The East Texas Book Fest set for Sept. 13 in Tyler is going to the dogs — dogs who are published authors no less.

About 60 authors (not counting canine celebrities) are scheduled to present workshops and sign copies of their work 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Tyler Junior College West Campus, 1530 SSW Loop 323. Kathy Murphy, founder of the Pulpwood Queen Book Club, is the honorary chairwoman and guest speaker.

Carrie Custer, one of Book Fest's promoters, has the scoop on the scruffy scribes — Elvis, Foxy and Rhythm. She sent out the following information.

"Elvis, a handsome blond golden retriever, is a therapy and reading education assistance dog. He encourages kids to read to him. He also recruited kids at Beckville Independent School District to illustrate his first book, ‘Elvis Wants to Know —- Did I Ask You?'

"In his spare time, Elvis can be found working at a local hospital or school, showing off at a dog show or just lounging by the swimming pool with friends. Elvis will bring his human companion, Gina Mills, with him to the Book Fest and they will both be available to chat with attendees and sell his book.

"Rhythm is a beautiful white Labrador retriever. He has just written his first book, ‘Reading with Rhythm.' It is a story about his job as a library dog, which he performs with the help of his human companion, Janet Mills. The illustrator is Paul Howell, a young man with autism whom Janet and Rhythm befriended while spending time with his high school class.

"Janet and Rhythm live in Glen Rose, where Janet is a substitute teacher and Rhythm is a therapy dog who does good work by visiting with sick or lonely people who benefit from the presence and personality of a loving, patient dog.

"Foxy is a very different kind of dog. He is feisty, small and red. He and his friends, Mike and Donna Metke of Tyler, travel to fifth-grade classes in East Texas to encourage children to think about going to college.

"Every child receives a free copy of Foxy's book, ‘My Story' by Foxy Metke!

"At the Book Fest, Foxy and the Metkes will present a special demonstration of their work. Each child in attendance will receive a free book."

Book Fest is sponsored by SALT, an organization of Smith County Libraries, and TAP for Literacy, a coalition of organizations that work to enhance literacy throughout East Texas.

For more information, go to or send an email to




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