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The Dansville Online
  • From Express to anthology

  • Dansville columnist Kay Thomas released her first book last month, and already has a demand, and material, for another.


    Thomas has compiled some of her most popular columns into a book, “And One More Thing – I brake for squirrels and other thoughts I have no doubt about,” in which, a handful of those columns have been published in the Express.

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  • Dansville columnist Kay Thomas released her first book last month, and already has a demand, and material, for another.
    Thomas has compiled some of her most popular columns into a book, “And One More Thing – I brake for squirrels and other thoughts I have no doubt about,” in which, a handful of those columns have been published in the Express.
    Thomas got her feet wet as a freelance writer for the Express in 2009 and ‘10, and has since gone onto freelance for other publications.
    Thomas had two book signings last week – at Macfadden’s Cafe, and at Wayland Free Library where she also spoke to the Trust in the Lives of Older Women group.
    “I was trying to write fiction,” she said of her start, “and it wasn’t going anywhere.”
    When DJ Smith took the helm as Express editor in the summer of 2009, he wrote a column asking readers for contributions. That’s when Thomas sent in some of her work, and Smith immediately encouraged her to write a feature.
    “He really put me in place and showed me that my voice was in the essays that I was writing,” she said about Smith.
    Thomas then became a regular contributor to the Express for the next year.
    “Pretty much that whole year, we talked about every piece that I was going to write. When we were finished, he told me the good points, the things I needed to pick up for the next time; so the Express was a learning period.”
    From there, Thomas has gone onto write for Life in the Finger Lakes, The Lake Country Weekender, Livingston County News, and Explore the Finger Lakes.
    While she is still regularly writing columns and features, she plans on releasing a second anthology of her work next year, and is has a novel in the works.
    She describes her columns as a collection of ideas on the little things in life, and are not necessarily local in nature, but as she puts it 'evergreen,' meaning it's stuff anyone anywhere can read and enjoy.
    Thomas said she thought she was writing for a female audience, but has learned that both male and females of all ages have enjoyed her writing.  
    Thomas, a Long Island native, was a Dansville K-6 classroom teacher from 1975 through 2000; and a gifted coordinator for Wayland-Cohocton from 2002 to 2007. Now retired from teaching, she lives in Dansville, Steuben County, with her husband Larry.
    Her book can be found on lulu.com or amazon.com.
    Page 2 of 2 - Thomas will be speaking to a book group at noon on Nov. 28 in Cohocton Library. The public is invited.
     
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