Dalton Middle Teacher Wins Author’s Award

Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Mitch Doxsee
Mitch Doxsee

Dalton Middle is now home to an award-winning author. 

Dismal Key, the novel written by Mitch Doxsee, a seventh-grade literacy teacher at DMS, recently won the 2013 Florida Authors and Publishers Association (FAPA) President’s Award. The book is also in the process of being published.

Mr. Doxsee, 40, started his teaching career in 2001 at the Center for Creative Arts in Chattanooga. There, he taught AP English, Journalism, and Creative Writing.

In 2005, he made the transfer to Dalton Middle.

Mr. Doxsee began writing Dismal Key three years ago when his homeland of Florida began tugging at him.

“The first reason I wrote that book is that I’m from Florida, and I grew up around the Ten Thousands Islands,” Mr. Doxsee said. “I just started writing the book, and it grew from that.”

Mr. Doxsee said he really wanted to capture the natural beauty of the area.

“It started from glimpses and visions in my head, and it wrote itself from there,” Mr. Doxsee said.

The book is set in the Ten Thousands Islands in Florida and focuses on human trafficking in the islands.

“I worked in Amsterdam,” Mr. Doxsee said, “which is known for its prostitution, and you see all these women get stuck in the Red Light District. What if these girls that disappear are being trafficked?”

Mr. Doxsee said writing the book itself has not been the hardest part of the process—the hardest is getting the book published.

“Thirty-five percent of writing is the actual writing. The other is trying to get it published. It’s a hard process. You have to find someone who’s interested in the book, and you have to try to get people to read the book.”

In March, Mr. Doxsee made his novel into an eBook and put it on Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

In June, Mr. Doxsee entered Dismal Key into the eBook category for FAPA. On Sept. 14, he found out that he had won gold for his work.

Mr. Doxsee then attended a banquet in Daytona, Fl., where the awards were presented. At the banquet, a publisher also approached Mr. Doxsee.

Mr. Doxsee signed a contract with Southern Yellow Pine Publishing, and the company is in the process of publishing Dismal Key.

The novel has been taken down from the two sites as of now, but will be available once the book is published.

Mr. Doxsee is writing the follow-up to Dismal Key, and he says he sees the book ending there.

“I write in any spare moment,” he said. “Whether I pour out 1,000 words or 500.”

He also said he sees other novels in his future, but wants to stay with the Dismal Key route while there is promise and interest in the content.

“It’s such a thrill knowing your book will be in print,” Mr. Doxsee said. “It will be properly edited and published. It’s wonderful.”



CGLA Takes Advantage Of The Total Solar Eclipse As A Learning Day

On Monday, Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy students will have their eyes to the sky.  To capitalize on this historical and educational opportunity, both middle and high school students are putting their safety glasses on and are viewing the solar eclipse from points in the path of totality. “All 350 girls will take part in various educational activities that directly ... (click for more)

GPS Plans Schoolwide Eclipse Viewing

Recognizing the opportunity afforded by the total solar eclipse on Monday, August 21, students at Girls Preparatory School will celebrate the natural wonder of the event from campus.   GPS Eclipse Day has been months in the making. Tracie Durham, science department chair, says the event has been a part of students’ summer reading and beginning-of-year curriculum. And ... (click for more)

Opposing Sides Expected To Show Up For Coolidge Park Rally Thursday Night; Some Urged To "Bring Your Guns"

Chattanooga Police said they will be closely monitoring an organized rally at Coolidge Park on Thursday that may draw some of the same opposing sides that clashed - with deadly result - in Charlottesville, Va. The rally is set for 7:30 p.m. and initially was  in memory of a woman who was killed in the angry Virginia confrontation that initially began over a decision to ... (click for more)

As Eclipse Approaches, Residents Urged To Get Full Tank Of Gas, Leave In Plenty Of Time For Watch Destination

As the heralded solar eclipse approaches, Chattanooga residents are urged to get a full tank of gas and to leave early for their watching destinations.   The total/partial solar eclipse on Monday afternoon will be visible in Hamilton County as well as surrounding counties. Viewers who gather in the Spring City (Rhea County) area will experience the longest period ... (click for more)

Shame On Anyone Planning A Protest At Coolidge Park Thursday Evening - And Response (4)

Whether you're Alt-Left or Alt-Right, Coolidge Park isn't the place to showcase your hate and indifference with one another. Just because it's your right, that doesn't necessarily mean that you should do it. Many have this misconception that this park is named after a President, Nope. It's named after a great man, a true patriot, and Medal of Honor recipient from right ... (click for more)

A Tale Of 3 Properties

Here in Lookout Valley on the far southwest edge of Chattanooga and Hamilton County, trees and rocks are plentiful but sidewalks are as rare as unicorns. It’s a land the governments forget – until tax collection time.  The recent county reappraisal spoke about ‘comps,’ recent sale prices of comparable local properties. But the assessors defined ‘comparable’ to suit themselves, ... (click for more)