PANAMACITY— Sharman Burson Ramsey will be a keynote speaker at the Books Alive! Local Authors event Saturday at the Bay County Public Library.
I have a friend in common with Sharman (her publicist, Kathie Bennett, daughter of Gerry and the late Barbara Clemons), but I was intrigued by her work because she also writes about the area my wife’s people are from — and actually knows something of the area’s genealogy.
“I’m always glad to find new connections and how they all fit together,” she said during a phone conversation this week.
“Connection” is a recurring theme. Her talk on Saturday, “Pit to Pinnacle: The Path to Publication,” will focus on the importance of networking for success in publishing.
“There’s a lot of pitfalls you can go through in the publishing process,” she said. “How you make connections and how you network are so critical to getting out there.”
Sharman credits some of her success to advice she got — including the name of an editor who was looking for her kind of book — by meeting Karen Spears Zacharias and other Books Alive authors.
“We all have our bucket list, and you want to get published so badly,” she said. “But then you get there and there’s another pinnacle you have to climb. … There is so much politics that goes on, even just marketing a book.”
Ramsey is a former radio host, freelance writer and adjunct professor who divides her time between Dothan, Ala., and Panama City. She writes about Southern culture, manners, etiquette and genealogy on her websites, Southern-Style.com and SharmanBursonRamsey.blogspot.com.
Newly released from Mercer University Press, “Swimming with Serpents” is the tale of star-crossed lovers of mixed Creek and Anglo heritage caught up in the massacre at Fort Mims, Ala., in 1813 and the Red-Stick wars. The sequel, “Nest of Vipers,” set during the First Seminole War, will be out next year.
Author Janis Owens, originally from Marianna and no stranger to these shores, called the new novel “a lush plunge into a forgotten corner of American history … a vivid, detailed story that reflects the passion and brutality of the day and gives insight to the nation we have become.”
Other local authors participating in Saturday’s event will include Anne Ake, Sherry Anderson, David Angier, Carole Bailey, François-Marie Bénard, Mark Boss, Bert-May Brady, Michael Brim, Jay Furr, Bruce Gamble, Michael Lister, Judy McCarthy, Nick May, Janet Nicolet, Pamela Peterson, Christopher Scharping, Todd Vandermolen, Linda Williamson, Greg Wilson, Marlene Womack, the Gulf Coast Woman’s Club “Heritage of Bay County, Florida” and myself.
Come out and see us, and make some connections.
Books Alive! Local:
- What: Morning presentations and afternoon book signings by 24 local authors; free admission, open to the public
- Where: Bay County Public Library Meeting Room, 898 W. 11th St. in Panama City
- When: 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday
- Schedule: 10 a.m. presentation by Sharman Burson Ramsey; 11 a.m. presentation by François-Marie Bénard; noon to 1 p.m. lunch on your own; 1-3 p.m. book sales and signings
- Details: 522-2120 or firstname.lastname@example.org