VOICES FROM HOME

The Mississippi Book Festival, in my humble opinion, is one of the best things our state has going and a true feather in the Magnolia state’s cap. Festival organizers deserve an enormous amount of credit for putting together such a first-class display of authors and literature and love of reading, from the panels in the state capitol that included luminaries like John Grisham, Greg Iles, and Jerry Mitchell to the exhibitor booths and the writers in Author’s Alley that dotted the landscape. Even the weather cooperated! Sure, it was hot. But it was dry, and what truly authentic summer event in Mississippi isn’t steamy as the tropics?

As a small but traditional publisher, I’m especially proud that two of my authors, John Floyd and Susan Cushman, were on author panels. In fact, both were on the VOICES FROM HOME panel, which was moderated by Tracy Carr. Nothing better than talented Mississippi authors talking about their Mississippi roots and influences on their work!
Tracy Carr, Johnnie Bernhard, Julie Cantrell, Susan, and John 
Susan’s Cherry Bomb is off to a great start! A very successful launch kick-started the book all the way to #2 on the August 20 Mississippi Reads top ten list in The Clarion Ledger! Susan checked in right behind John Grisham and ahead of Ace Atkins! I’d say that’s pretty good company!
A fun night at Lemuria, a truly wonderful bookstore.

Susan with fellow author Susan Marquez

The long-awaited reading from Cherry Bomb in front of a rapt audience

One of my favorite aspects of doing what I do — both as a book publisher and a published author — is visiting with folks in stores, libraries, and festivals … like the Mississippi Book Festival. Sure’s it’s some kind of hot. But we all stay hydrated, and all of us with Dogwood Press spend time in the tent and do what we Mississippians do well: we visit with folks. It’s not only a way to move a few extra books, but you never know who you’ll see for the first time in many years, or who might ask you to speak to their writing group or civic organization. 
The whole gang. Nothing forced about the smiles. We’re all friends.

With my friends Renee Greene and her daughter Caroline. Enjoy your visit to Oakdale!

We’ll all look forward to next year’s festival, which will be held in steamy mid-August! In the meantime, I look forward to the Mid Mississippi Writer’s Guild’s annual conference, which is THIS FRIDAY AND SATURDAY (August 25-26) at the Holiday Inn adjacent to Trustmark Park in Pearl. Lemuria owner and legend John Evans will accept a lifetime achievement award at lunch on Saturday, and I’m honored to be one of the presenters Saturday afternoon — I’ll give a pair of talks about the publishing business, and it will be very audience-involved and hopefully a lot of fun. Look up the conference on Facebook and at www.mississippiwritersguild.com. It isn’t too late to register!
And if you haven’t yet picked up a copy of Cherry Bomb, come meet Susan at Turn Row Books in Greenwood this Saturday (12pm-2pm), and grab a signed book at The Book Mart and Cafe in Starkville, Pass Christian Books on the gulf coast, Burke’s in Memphis, Lemuria in Jackson, Square Books in Oxford, Page and Palette in Fairhope, Alabama, and Novel in Memphis! 
A hot topic of discussion, as we visited with folks at the festival, was downloads vs. actual books you can hold in your hands and enjoy. Lots of folks love reading via their Kindle, and with that in mind, here’s our list of available downloads. Load up, and start reading in less than a minute!
SUSAN CUSHMAN – Cherry Bomb (coming in September)
JOHN M. FLOYD – Dreamland
JOHN M. FLOYD – Fifty Mysteries
JOHN M. FLOYD – Deception
JOHN M. FLOYD – Clockwork
VALERIE WINN – Forsaking Mimosa
JOE LEE – Director’s Cut
JOE LEE – Last Chance Texaco
JOE LEE – The Long Road Home
JOE LEE – The Magnolia Triangle
JOHN LEE – The Legend of Roger (PERFECT for your middle-schooler!)
RANDY PIERCE – The Peter Bay
RANDY PIERCE – Pain Unforgiven
RANDY PIERCE – Magnolia Mud

Thanks so much for your time! A complete list of book signings and author talks is on our web site, www.dogwoodpress.com. Come see us and say hello!
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