Meeting Minutes

June 2023

AGT Monthly Meeting for June 2023

The Authors Guild of Tennessee held their monthly meeting on Thursday, June 1, 2023, at the Faith Lutheran Church, Knoxville. Social time and book exchange began at 10:30 a.m. with the business meeting starting at 11:00 a.m.

The following members were present:

Stephen Lyn Bales, Bill Barbour, Linda Best, Sam Bledsoe, Randy Carpenter, Patricia Crumpler, Gayle Curtin, Dave Curran, Laura Derr, Danita Dotson, Sonja DuBois, Linda Fitzpatrick, Kaye George, Jim Hartsell, Wes Hibbert, Mark Hicks, Morris Hudgins, Ernie Lancaster, Jerry Morton, Angela Newland, Cheryl Peyton, Art Stewart, Cyn Taylor, and Victoria Winifred.

Guests: Caroline Everett, Robin and Ralph Montserrat

Welcome – Cheryl welcomed all in attendance and asked guests to stand to be acknowledged. Ralph Montserrat is the newest member of the Writers’ Circle and has made an application to AGT. New member Mark Hicks introduced himself as a psychologist who has written a book on relationships. Our other new member, Angela Newland, introduced herself as a retired engineer who wrote The River House, a non-fiction book about a retired couple who fought their home insurance company for over two years to get their hurricane-damaged house repaired.

May minutes: Minutes of the May meeting have been approved online.

Treasurer’s report:  – Cheryl

Balance as of May 1, $2,686.97.  Balance as of May 31: $2459.66. Book sales: Preferred Pharmacy – $42.00. Winsome Stroll – $25.18. Donations: anonymous – $100, Jerry Morton – $50.00. Payments: Chili’s – $19.38. Amazon (projector) $74.11, Author payments – $13.99. Pending transactions: Author payments – $67.18, Writing Contest expense – $241.45.

Report on Committee Activities:

Committee Chairs:

Shows, festivals: Cheryl noted that the Lenoir City Art & Crafts Festival is this weekend. 10,000 – 20,000 attendees expected. Ten of us will be working shifts in two tents.

Library: Laura explained our check-out and check-in system for new members, encouraging reading and reviewing one another’s books.

Retail:  Linda Best reported on her visit to Sweetwater Valley Farm (Mayfield Dairy) in view of placing our books. She will determine an appropriate list. She also went to Ft. Loudoun visitor’s center that is interested in selling books set in the Colonial period in Tennessee, children’s books, and books on nature.

Training:  Sam Bledsoe advised that they have had three seminars on Twitter prior to meetings.  He is looking for a location that is convenient for members to meet for a longer session. Future training sessions include training on the website. Gayle added that it would be good to have a you-tube video on our website.

Membership: Cyn Taylor reports that eleven people have applied since January, nine being approved and one having to back out of her acceptance. A 14-year-old girl is the most recent applicant. Cyn asked for responses to her potential membership. Some felt that she wouldn’t fit in and we should have an age restriction of 18. Jerry suggested that we have a junior category. Cheryl advised that she should be held to the same standard as adult applicants.



AGT member Jerry Morton talked about recently having his first trailer video made by Books Mojo to promote his latest book, Finding My Way. The cost was $275 for a 60-second film. He then showed it to the group. The you tube link is: The video captured the essence of the book with its stirring music and photography that captured the themes of the book in one’s journey through life, including the diversity of people in this country, the evolution of society, the different belief systems, life’s truths, the unexplainable phenomena, self-discovery, and the human condition.

Everyone thought it was a beautiful presentation and an inducement to buy the book. Linda Best said she has contracted for a trailer from booksmojo and negotiated a better deal than their first price. Also, she advised that there are coupons available to reduce the cost.

Jerry told the group about a deathbed statement made by the mother of a friend. She came out of her coma and said “Life is in our stories,” and then closed her eyes and died.

Victoria Winifred suggested that these trailers would be excellent posts on Instagram and Twitter.

Jerry thanked everyone for their contributions and played the video one more time to leave us with this last impression.


Cheryl adjourned the meeting at 12:23 p.m. The next meeting is scheduled for July 6th at 10:30 a.m. at the Faith Lutheran Church.