I was asked yesterday what I was reading. Well, I just finished an old Lee Child novel called Tripwire. It’s an early volume of child’s fantastic, long-running Jack Reacher series. What else? The memoir by New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey, Wherever I Wind Up, and in the on-deck circle (baseball pun intended) is the latest Sarah Booth Delaney novel by Carolyn Haines, The Bonefire of the Vanities.

Which brings me to a great point: How important is a good title? For this reader, the answer is VERY. Oh, sure, if one of my favorite authors (James Lee Burke, Greg Iles, Lee Child, Dennis Lehane, Harlan Coben) comes out with a new novel entitled My Really Good Story, I’d probably chance it on the author’s credibility with me. For the rest of us who aren’t superstars, the title needs to be something the prospective buyer/reader will remember.

With that said, here’s the cover of my forthcoming Oakdale series novel, Last Chance Texaco!

I sincerely hope this intrigues you!

We’ll roll out Last Chance Texaco in my hometown of Starkville, Mississippi, at The Book Mart on Thursday, September 27 (3pm) and in Jackson at Lemuria Books on Saturday, October 6 (1pm). This is volume IV of a suspense series that began with Judgment Day in 2007 and continued with The Magnolia Triangle and The Long Road Home. This book rolls out a new protagonist (Chris Brantley), although you’ll find many familiar Oakdale folks from previous volumes as well as the usual stuff in these books: old money, lots of crime for such a small place, and a high concentration of crazy people!

Dogwood Press just published an e-book by my son, John! It’s called The Legend of Roger and is a fantasy and adventure novel with a lot of humor. It’s great for the middle schoolers in your life and holds together remarkably well, in my humble opinion, for a work written by a kid who was thirteen at the time!
If you have a Kindle, look up John Lee and The Legend of Roger and download it today!

A true Proud Papa moment!

In addition to Last Chance Texaco, Dogwood Press is proud to publish Deception, the fourth collection of John M. Floyd mystery suspense short stories, in April 2013. The last Floyd collection, Clockwork, was released in fall 2010, and I assure you this one is definitely worth the wait. John is the entire package: a great guy and a fantastic, versatile writer whose stories all have a Hitchcock-like twist at the end, not to mention his capacity to write well in genres ranging from police procedural, nostalgia, Western, romance, and more.

The new addition to the Dogwood Press team is Gulfport, Mississippi resident Michael Hewes. His novel, Watermark, is a legal thriller with the destruction and heartbreak from Hurricane Katrina as a backdrop. As a publisher, I’ve received a number of queries over the years from folks who’ve asked me to consider their Katrina-related projects, and while many were fine works in their own right, Watermark, treats the after-effects of The Storm in just the right way. We’ll launch the book in fall 2013.

Mark it down: Watermark is just over a year away!

Upcoming events: Valerie Winn will speak to the Friends of the Library in Moss Point, Mississippi, on Saturday, September 29 at 2pm. Valerie just completed a couple of appearances at Gulf South Art Gallery in her hometown of McComb, and there was a really nice write-up on her in the new edition of Pulse, a quarterly magazine published by the Enterprise-Journal newspaper in McComb.

Valerie made her own poster for her signings. I love the creativity!

Valerie, John, and I will all crisscross the region this fall selling our new books and old. Scheduling updates are always on the Dogwood Press website, which you can visit at www.dogwoodpress.com. We look forward to seeing you! And don’t forget to download my son’s e-book, The Legend of Roger!