And just like that, the tour for my new novel, Director’s Cut, is underway! The excitement never goes away when I launch a new book. It’s as much of a thrill as it was over a decade ago when my first one was published. And yes, it’s a relief to see my name and the book title spelled correctly, and the front cover look like it’s supposed to when that first box is opened.

Know something all authors go through? WILL PEOPLE LIKE MY BOOK? You find me one author who is so utterly self-confident in that new book–he or she is as convinced readers will like it like he knows the sun will come up tomorrow morning–and I’ll find you scads of authors who have the jitters to at least a degree. WILL THE REVIEWS BE ANY GOOD? I go through that. So do the authors I publish. And, I suspect, any writer with a pulse. I’m not sure we’d be human if we didn’t.

The marketing is done well in advance, of course, and designed to roll out all at once, from television and radio interviews to newspaper and magazine features and book reviews. Not everything always goes as planned (“Mr. Lee, I’m sorry, but the producer who booked you for that date no longer works here, and we already have a guest scheduled today on Midday.”), but hey, things happen. And one of the best parts of launching Director’s Cut was being interviewed by Marshall Ramsey on Mississippi Public Radio. He’s a good guy, as talented as they come, and has a huge following–meaning a lot of folks heard our 20-minute visit several days ago. That’s a good thing!

Me with Marshall Ramsey, the award-winning editorial cartoonist for The Clarion Ledger.
Opening Night at Lemuria, where my running friends cleaned up just like I did to make that evening very special!


We’re also launching John Floyd’s fantastic new collection of humor, Fifty Mysteries, this month. Remember how enjoyable those 6-8 stories about the retired small-town sheriff (Charles “Chunky” Jones) and his retired elementary schoolteacher, Angela “Angel” Potts were in the first four collections? We’ve had such good feedback we decided to publish an entire book of 50 of them, all in a puzzle/solution format with the answers in the back…a little bit like the Encyclopedia Brown books John and I (and so many others folks) loved back in the day. Plan on getting your copy at Lemuria on Wednesday, October 29!

These are great fun!

These are a hoot! The sheriff’s former fifth-grade teacher helps him solves crimes whether he wants the assistance or not, and she makes a big point of correcting his grammar along the way! And if you need some new Floyd right away, drop by Books A Million, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you buy magazines and pick up the current edition of The Strand Magazine. John has an excellent suspense story in there called “Molly’s Plan,” which sides just pages away from a fun slice of Michael Connolly short fiction!

John Floyd and Michael Connolly in the same mag? Hard to beat!


 What I really enjoy is traveling to different towns and meeting members of Friends of the Library groups and book clubs. You talk about finding loyal readers…it’s hard to argue that the best book promotion is word of mouth, because when these folks like a book, they make sure their friends know!

I had the honor of speaking to the Lucky Ladies book club at Corner Bakery of Madison.
Me at the Pontotoc County Library. There were either people on the other side of the room who couldn’t be seen in this picture or the rest of the library was on fire.
Valerie Winn with Shereen Kostmayer, who recently opened Southern Bound Bookshop in Biloxi.

Randy Pierce takes questions about Magnolia Mud at the Choctaw County Library at a talk put together
 by Jan Ballard and the Yarn Spinners book club.


And a shout-out to two friends with new books. I had the privilege of serving as editor on both: Emily Jones, a retired newspaper columnist, has just launched a really neat collection of humorous columns (and wonderful recipes) called Love, Laughter, and Losing My Keys. Pick up a signed copy at The Book Mart & Café in Starkville, among other places, and just try to stop reading the columns once you’ve started! Also Anthony Kalberg is just days away from launching his excellent literary mystery, A Chasing of the Wind, on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Look both of them up on Facebook, and visit Emily at and Anthony at

You won’t be able to put it down!

Funny, poignant, and filled with beautiful artwork!


UPCOMING APPEARANCES: Really looking forward to Saturday, November 8, when John, Randy, Valerie, and I will team up for what we think of as Dogwood Press Day at Pass Christian Books on the Coast! On Thursday, November 20, John, Randy, and I will be together at Flynt Memorial Library in Flowood for an author seminar at 6:00 p.m. at which we’ll discuss researching our books, how to fine-tune writing skills, and how to go about trying to get published. On Sunday, November 23, John, Randy, and I will join a number of authors at The Book Mart & Café in Starkville for the annual Christmas Open House, and John and I look forward to the annual Christmas Author Extravaganza at Main Street Books of Hattiesburg on Monday, December 1.


RANDY PIERCE – Magnolia Mud
VALERIE WINN – Forsaking Mimosa
JOHN M. FLOYD – Deception
JOHN M. FLOYD – Clockwork
JOE LEE – The Magnolia Triangle
JOE LEE – The Long Road Home
JOE LEE – Last Chance Texaco
JOHN LEE – The Legend of Roger

Note: Both Director’s Cut and Fifty Mysteries will be available for Kindle download in just days!

Thanks for your time. For a complete list of Dogwood Press author events (and available books for purchase), visit And stop in and say hello if you get a chance!

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