The Ink Penn

We are fortunate in Metro Atlanta to have too-many-to-count talented authors and a wealth of events where we can meet them. And, we authors are fortunate to have an increasingly supportive community of interested readers.

The Decatur Book Festival is probably our best-known book event, followed by the Book Festival of MJCCA. At both events, everyday people can meet renowned best-selling authors and local indie authors, and discover and purchase books. I’ve never made it to the Decatur Book Festival because I take an annual trip that weekend, but I’ve enjoyed several sessions at the November MJCCA event.

I’ve also had numerous other opportunities to connect with our local author community. I first met author Doug Dahlgren when he visited a book signing event connected with Dunwoody’s Lemonade Days Author Booth.

His most recent book, “The Traveler,” is the seventh in his “Son” series and earned him a 2018 nomination for Georgia Author of the Year in the Detective/Mystery category. That’s an accomplishment in itself, but there’s more to his story. While continuing to pursue his passion for writing, he came up with an idea to provide an opportunity for both authors and readers. Haven’t you always wondered what inspires writers to write or how they dream up plots and characters?

The weekly Doug Dahlgren Radio Show, started in March 2014, gives you a window into the minds of authors. In one-hour internet broadcasts, Doug interviews fellow authors and poses the questions we’d all like to ask. Since its inception, Doug has met and talked with more than 200 writers. You can listen to the show live Friday mornings at 11 a.m. Eastern time on the website artistfirst.com/ dahlgren.htm, and you can hear more than 18 months of past shows any time.

When the Georgia Center for the Book discovered Doug’s internet radio program this year, the organizers talked with him about a monthly live stage production. The result of that collaboration is “An Evening with Authors You Should Know.” Doug brings four writers to the Decatur Library Auditorium stage at 7:15 p.m. on the first Friday of most months and hosts a lively discussion about their work, who they are, and why they write. A brief Q&A session follows the discussion, offering attendees the opportunity to address the authors directly.

Because the Decatur Book Festival consumes all of Labor Day weekend, there wasn’t a September show. The next opportunity to enjoy the live production is Oct. 5 when Doug’s guests will be award-winning authors Linda Sands and Jameson Gregg, both past Georgia Author of the Year winners, and Mary Anne Edwards, author of five traditional mysteries featuring Detective Charlie McClung. Mary Anne, a member of Sisters in Crime, is currently working on number six in the series. Rounding out the October panel will be author and journalist Jedwin Smith, a two-time Pulitzer nominee and author of “Our Brother’s Keeper.”

Visit georgiacenterforthebook.org for more information on “Authors You Should Know” and other events at this venue, and check out Doug’s radio show to see who else you can get to know.

Meanwhile, did you know that Dunwoody has a monthly book event, “A Novel Idea,” held at Crema 6:30-8:30 p.m. on the first Tuesday of the month. The event features memoir and nonfiction authors Oct. 2 and Science Fiction and Fantasy authors on Nov. 6. Look for installment No. 2 of It’s All About Authors to learn how “A Novel Idea” got its start.

P.S. Please join me at A Novel Idea at Alpha Soda in Alpharetta on Sunday evening, Oct. 14, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. I’ll be among the guest authors that night.

Kathy is a Sandy Springs resident. Find her books, “Lord Banjo the Royal Pooch” and “The Ink Penn: Celebrating the Magic in the Everyday,” at the Enchanted Forest, Amy’s Hallmark at the Forum and Mansell Crossing, and on Amazon. Contact her at inkpenn119@gmail.com, and follow her on Facebook, www.facebook.com/KathyManosPennAuthor/.

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