Introducing Thomas W. Spann, author of The Learning and the Burning

“My author representative was extremely help. She was prompt and knowledgeable. It did not seem to matter if my question was major or minor, she gave the same professional attention to each question. The total process was followed as it was originally explained to me. There were no surprises. I had a pleasant experience.”

The Reverend Dr. Thomas W. Spann is an ordained Baptist minister who earned his Bachelor of Arts at Bishop College, Master of Divinity at Princeton Theological Seminary, and Doctor of Ministry at Southern Methodist University. A preacher and former Air Force Reserve Chaplain, he also served as a college instructor in Arkansas and Texas. After thirty years at Perkins School of Theology at SMU, he retired in 2018 as the Director of the Perkins Intern Program. He is the author of When Theological Reflection Goes to Church; First Sunday: Reflections on Ministry Experiences in the Black Church; A Necessary Transition: A Book of Sermons; I Feel My Help Coming: A Volume of Sermons, and Sing to the Lord a New Song: Prophetic Poems of Praise, which are available at He and his wife, Cynthia, live in Dallas.

Book description…

Whether a preacher is just starting out in ministry or has been in pulpit ministry for several decades, this book is filled with creative ideas for enhancing this sacred oratorical art. Thomas Spann writes from the perspective that any preacher’s current method or approach to preaching is fine, but can be enhanced. In this sense there is no judgment on any preacher’s current method. Drawing on over fifty years in the gospel ministry, this offering is an attempt to provide insights and ideas to aid in next level preaching. Ideas in this book range from the use of poetic flair to social messaging of the gospel. With care and concern, Thomas Spann addresses unusual topics in the field of preaching, including: disavowing the joke about seminary/cemetery; progressive celebration; preaching as a physical act; perspiration and inspiration; and avoiding common errors in English. Using his African American religious experience as a broad background, Thomas Spann believes that this book is useful in a variety of denominational settings. The book concludes with four original sermons.

Introducing David D. Bernstein, author of Voices of the Heart

“From the beginning, and throughout the process of publishing my first book, I felt that I was in the hands of a pro. My author representative always took the time to answer my questions in detail and swiftly. If she didn’t have 100% confidence, she researched the question and got back to me. I was very pleased with her and I am also thankful that I was paired with her as an author rep”

David D. Bernstein was born in Moscow and immigrated from the Soviet Union in 1981. He has been writing poetry from the heart since high school. Several of his poems have been published in anthologies and magazines, and David has been the recipient of five Editor’s Choice awards. He has hosted several open mic events in bookstores and in college was the co-founder of The Poetry Society. He is the author of two picture books, The Enchanted Rope and Peanut. His middle grade book The Portal won a CIPA Envy Merit award in Juvenile Fiction in 2018. He also authored Spirral and Rebirth in The CORT Chronicles. David is the proud uncle of two teenage boys.

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Book description…

Take an emotional roller-coaster ride through a ten-year snapshot of one man’s life in this compelling collection of poetry. The poems will not only inspire you but guide you on your life’s journey. Voices of the Heart combines beautiful photography with powerful words in a collection that also serves as a memoir.

Introducing Barbara Drinkwine, author of Lima Beans for Breakfast

“What a blockbuster learning experience I had being a part of self publishing with Outskirts Press! I felt empowered to the next challenge.”

Barbara is a retired Elementary Principal from Wisconsin. Motivating and inspiring children to love learning defined her career. She began her career teaching Kindergarten. Convinced all children can be successful life-long learners, she was a fierce advocate for mastery learning through theme teaching.

Some of her accomplishments were

• Teacher of the Year

• Summer School Coordinator

• Middle-School Assistant Administrator

• Elementary Principal

• City committee for Menasha Wetlands Education Center

• City committee for construction of new Menasha Library

Today she lives with her husband in her childhood hometown. They have two sons and two grandchildren. She is the author of Writing for the Kingdom: Praise and Glory.

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Book description…

Are you yearning for do-overs? Are you looking back and wondering how you got to where you are now? The finish line is a part of everyone’s journey. Should our successes and failures define us, or rather that we reach the finish line? In my journey, the Reader will know I have not come to this stage of my life easily. I have been strong-willed, impulsive, wrong thinking, disobedient, defiant, and finally broken.
A journey from early childhood through adolescence, motherhood, friendships and finding the finish line on a very narrow road was a lifetime adventure. Sometimes it was a humorous journey, but other times an arduous climb up the mountain of mistakes in search of answers.
This is my story.

Introducing Paul E. Kotz, author of Start Late, Finish Happy

“My author representative is a consummate professional who is responsive, timely, provides great recommendations, knows her craft, and she communicates clearly, while remaining firm and fair.”

Paul’s books address seeing the good through every day stories and facing adversity with hope and compassion. He is a lifelong learner with education and business expertise. This includes working as faculty and advisor with undergraduate as well as graduate students and since 2013, in a doctoral program in leadership. He has taught and served as an executive/life coach to graduate students and business professionals and has assisted high school students in navigating adolescence.
Paul E. Kotz is a resident of Saint Paul, Minnesota and continues to collect new experiences that shape and challenge his perspectives.
Contact him at or

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Book description…

Those who make an impact leave a mark on us. Hopefully, a positive one, by those who bring us joy or those who inspire and motivate us, giving us a vision of how we can live our own lives better. Each of us has only so much time. There are plenty of people who have opened my eyes. Often the realization comes unexpectedly. Sometimes, we may even have a dream as a reminder of how our lives need to change and grow.
I am not going to tell anyone exactly what to do in these stories of Starting Late and Finishing Happy. They are everyday tales of unexpected surprises, and learning lessons… accounts of those who make an impact and observations of people who help us realize our gifts. They assist us, consciously or unknowingly, to change for the better.
You can give back to society. You can bring your community together. You have relevance. You only have to Start… to Finish Happy. – Paul E. Kotz

Also by Paul E. Kotz: The CIPA Award Winner and Reader’s Choice Award nominee Profiles in Kindness – Stories of Inspiration & Everyday Leadership (2020). Stories that call us to take charge of each day and positively seize it for what it offers.
Dr. Kotz also wrote: The CIPA Award winning Something Happened Today – A Collection of the Unexpected (2018) – Stories of mentorship and keeping our eyes and ears open to the present and the positive.

Introducing Bob Fedell, author of Poetic Jazz

“My author representative did such a wonderful job on both of my poetry books that– even though I am a poet– it is hard to express in words how invaluable she has been.”

Bob Fedell graduated from Mount St. Mary’s College (now University) with a B.A. in English, received his masters from Rollins College, and spent a summer in 1983 studying Modern British Poetry at Exeter College, Oxford. He lives in Orlando, Florida where he taught English for 41 years (he also coached tennis and golf and helped direct several Shakespearean plays).

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Book description…

New masterpieces from (until recently) the best unpublished poet in America! Polish up the Pulitzer!

Introducing Hector R. Valenzuela, Ph.D., author of Contextualized Mathematics

“My author representative was wonderful throughout the whole process.”

Dr. Valenzuela has 16 years of experience teaching mathematics to college and university students in face-to-face classrooms, and for 11 of the 16 years he has taught online mathematics to university students. Having been formally trained in the area of mathematics both in undergraduate and graduate school, he spent 15 years working in the applied fields of Management Information Systems, Business Finance, and Business Development (all for the same company). Dr. Valenzuela has a Ph.D. in Math Education with a specialty in college contextualized (applied mathematics) curriculum. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mathematics and a Master of Arts degree in Mathematics. His love of mathematics teaching extends to writing and researching mathematics where he is a published author in mathematical research on college curriculum research topics.

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Book description…

What is contextualized mathematics? What are the foundational research underpinnings of contextualized math curriculum? What have we learned about contextualized math curriculum that will improve math education in the future? These questions build the foundation for a reader to begin a journey with Dr. Valenzuela on this crucial topic for math education and for our society.

Introducing Macey Embrey, author of Pago the Trustworthy Stallion

“This book went so smoothly and quick!! I’m looking forward to completing the next four books!”

Macey Embrey is a middle school English teacher and high school volleyball coach in the North Kansas City School District.

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Book description…

The Little Falabella is a heartwarming tale about fitting in even when you feel different. Follow Hera as she struggles with her spotted coat making her feel different from the other Falabellas. She longingly gazed at the other Falabella’s and their seemingly perfect coats every day. However, one day, another Falabella, Cashana, notices Hera and compliments her coat, and introduces her to the other Falabellas. Cashana helps Hera realize that her spotted coat is what makes her unique and special. Hera realizes that being different isn’t always a bad thing, and she learns to love her uniquely spotted coat.

Introducing David “Bill” Verhines, author of Super Thunderbird

“I can see where Outskirts Press really knows their business and that they have done this for quite a while. They know how to cater to the author in a responsive and responsible way. I plan to keep on publishing my passion with Outskirts Press.”

David, or “Bill,” Verhines had experienced academic success, journalistic success, and even Charismatic success. In this single, powerful volume he devises a way to understand everything in terms of a life-satisfying worldview. Now, having drawn the attention of a startling cryptid companion in the process, “Bill” now wishes to share his perspective with the church, family, friends, neighbors, and any companion who might listen — be that companion cryptid or otherwise.”

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Book description…

I am not the sort of person who goes out of his way looking for encounters with cryptid creatures. I have no interest in believing they are real. I never had any desire to encounter one. Until something appeared right in front of me on an Interstate highway. After experiencing several plateaus in my life, the truck-driving rhythm of the road has afforded me a lot of time to reflect on my life, my experience, and how to understand reality. My hours of contemplation led me to construct a worldview that emphasized the importance of a “bipedal” existence as a tie-in with all of life — Christian life, in particular. I had a “driver’s seat, front-row” experience with the largest bipedal event in all of human history. Applying my endeavors to this newfound-jet-airliner-winged dinosaur has led me to several startling new insights. The purpose of this book is to share these insights with you.

Introducing Dr. John (Satchmo) Mannan, author of The Pearls of Love

“My author representative was great. Plain and simple.”

John “Satchmo” Mannan is the nom de plume or nom de guerre, if you will, of Dr. Mujib Mannan retired Professor of the American Experience law, literature and history at the College of New Rochelle, University of the Virgin Islands and other university venues for nearly 30 years. The author is an educator, lawyer, historian, poet, short storyteller, essayist, jazz musician, marketing consultant and executive director of an affordable housing initiative in Harlem. Born in Harlem, the author has written several books, including Cultural Imperialism, The History of the Harlem Mosque, The Legend of Lute, Tales of the Nightingale, The Arabic Words in the English Language. His poetry is in several anthologies, but under an earlier nom de plume John McRae, including Ghetto 68, We Be Word Sorcerers, Three Hundred Sixty Degrees of Blackness, etc. and on other venues such as the African Sun Times, Living City, The Thinker. under the name Mujib Mannan. His peace Haiku have been chosen for inclusion in the city of Philadelphia “Peace Project” and his Jazz C.D. “Ten O’clock Jazz” was released December 2014 by New Savoy Records.”

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Book description…

Those who love. Those who have loved. Those who will love and for all who dare to dream of love. The poems in this book were born on nights when the eyes of my beloved were like songs, and the perfume of our love pursued the midnight air. When the rising sun embraced the moon and our love did not disappear, we discovered that our kisses had become stories and stars in the Land of Nod. Nod is where music retires after it is played, and where night calls a moment of its passing a day. Here, dreams recline on chaises waiting to whisper their tales into the hearts of readers and nightingales.

Introducing Forest Riggs, author of GALVESTON: Memories & Related Stories

“My Author Representative listened to my ramblings with genuine concern and compassion.”

Forest Riggs is one of the original co-creators and contributors to OutSmart Magazine. He has contributed to numerous other publications including This Week in Texas, The Houston Press, Ranger Rick Magazine, The Texas Triangle, Catholic Herald and Guideposts Magazine, as well as many newspapers and journals in Texas, California and the U.S. Virgin Islands. His popular column Reflections and Recollections, appeared monthly for many years in Houston’s holistic magazine The Uptown Express. Since 2015 he has written a twice-monthly column in Houston’s Montrose Star. “Across the Causeway” has become a popular and well-received chronicle of life on Galveston Island. Mr. Riggs, a wildlife biologist and educator has taught for the National Wildlife Federation and in both public and private schools in the U.S. and abroad. He has presented programs in educational settings, libraries and civic meetings as well as participating in several theatre projects. Mr. Riggs currently resides in Galveston, Texas where he keeps busy writing, gardening, fishing, home restoration, cooking and entertaining friends. Cover Photo: Billy G. Hill

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Book description…

A galloping romp through the memories and stories of a man who has held a colorful relationship with Galveston Island since his very early years. From first-hand stories told to him by the direct descendant of an enslaved woman bought and sold in Galveston, and the heart-wrenching memories of a 1900 storm survivor, to the hilarious adventures he and his brother shared while spending summers on the island with paternal grandparents. Raconteur Riggs has woven a rich tapestry of tales and memories of the magical island, including early history, pirates, slavery, gambling, natural history, hurricanes, love, loss, ghosts and a myriad of other topics. Sharing from his personal adventures, Riggs takes the reader on a roller coaster journey through emotions that run the gamut of human experiences, and all associated with the tiny island in the Gulf of Mexico. A must read for those who enjoy adventure, romance and pure fun, as told through the memories of a young boy, adolescent and adult who has held strong to every piece of a Galveston story that became part of his life.