74th Arkansas Writer’s Conference

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I love going to the Arkansas Writer’s Conference. I meet other authors who share so much information about writing and marketing. Some of us set up tables of our books. Its fun to see the covers and artwork on everyone’s newest offerings. I been to a couple years in a row and its becoming liken unto a family reunion, seeing old friends and catching up. Ideas of what we are each doing to share our stories are fascinating and very helpful. I always learn something fresh and leave with new energy.

This year I was one of the presenters. I shared about my first story “Military Mommy” about my daughter who entered the United States Army. The update was she had been gone to Iraq for the past 10 months and we were awaiting her soon return to America. They were ready to board the plane to come home weeks before but a sudden scary illness had them in quarantine at the time of the conference. I am happy to say even though it was a nasty stomach bug, the soldiers returned safely this week. We had a fun family get together this past weekend and she got to see her children. As a mother, I am relieved and thankful beyond words that she is home. God bless America.

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A simple poetic story about military families.  “Military Mommy” about my daughter Melissa Dabney. The little book has photographs of the military base at bootcamp in Jacksonville, South Carolina and her first duty station in the Hawaiian island.

That story led to a biography of my father who was a Navyman during WWII. It was to be a short essay but turned into his whole life’s journey. A military love story  “Dance Me Home” took three years and became a 70,000 word book.  I shared a song I wrote for my dad called “Soldier”

Dance Me Home

Dance Me Home 2012 is a military love story biography written by Carol Dabney

My writing turned a corner after dad’s book and I started writing children’s books. I started working as a music teacher at St. Mark’s Day School in Little Rock. I love children. Raised five of my own. They are grown now and having children of their own.

I wrote a whimsical Christmas story about a mouse. “Twas The Mouse before Christmas” I spent a year learning how to illustrate. That was harder then it sounds.




After that, I was asked to illustrate some animals parables for another author. Attorney Everett Martindale. Presently we have 12 storybooks. At the writer’s conference I shared about how my music students help me in the development of songs to go with the stories.  I featured “Wisdom, the Elephant Used by God”


My sister-in-law Cindy Reyes translates the animal books into Spanish.  I discovered a talented musician in Rod Ragsdale and we found a recording studio and started producing audiobooks of these wonderful stories. Rod is the voice of many of the stories. We add background sounds and have a lot of fun. I recommend Blue Chair Recording Studio in Austin, Arkansas. The engineer Darian Stribling is fabulous.



I think at the end of my writer’s conference I share a song I recorded when I was just 17. I had been awarded a recording contract with Paradise Records in Nashville, Tenn after winning the national talent award as “Miss Arkansas Teen” The song “Arkansas” really describes my young life being raised on a 40 acre farm in the Ozarks. Southern roots.

Now I live and work in Little Rock and its been an amazing journey. Thank you to all at the conference for so much encouragement. I’m also thankful for the support in buying my storybooks online at Amazon and local bookstores and festival.

Oh and I am happy to announce that Rod and I will be married at the end of summer 2018.


Carol and Rod Patriotic

Rod and I will be reading and singing at the Hillary Clinton Children’s Library and Learning Center Saturday July 28th at 10am. Hope to see you there.



Thank you Arkansas Writer’s Conference for letting me share my personal journey.



Veteran’s Day Programs – music and story

America. The flag. Soldiers. We are thankful to all our service men and women who have served this great nation that is our home. We salute the military who are serving now at home and across the sea. This week Rod Ragsdale and myself are singing at several Veteran’s Day programs for schools. We were asked to do more programs, but unfortunately, did not have time for all.

God and country is our musical passion. We also sing at nursing homes and always thank the good folks of that generation for all they have done. Rod’s father was shot during the WWII and his brother was injured in the service of our country as well. Rod served in the navy on a submarine for 6 years, where he learned to play the guitar and harmonica during the quieter moments. My father was in the navy in WWII and was on an air craft carrier. My sister is retired recently, but was a nurse and served as a Lt Col. in the Air Force over in Iraq, Turkey and Germany. and my daughter is a captain in the army serving now.

This year I was honored to sing the national anthem for the annual Alzheimer’s Walk in Little Rock.

This week every year we get to share some things about veteran’s and our personal stories and we sing patriotic songs. Here are some pictures of some of our programs honoring American soldiers. Plus some photos of my books: a children’s book called “Military Mommy” and my father’s biography called, “Dance Me Home.” These books are available on amazon.com



For children to read: fun and poetic


For adults to read: a military love story. Inspiring.



God Bless America

Summer fun at the Library

I salute our wonderful libraries. The local libraries are always creating new ways to interest kids in reading. Reading can take you places real and imagined. Reading can ignite and inspire.

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Rod and I enjoyed singing and reading our stories at the libraries this summer and taking part in getting children excited about music and showing them some golf adventures.

Reading can change the way you think about your life. When I was young I lived on a goat farm and my sister read Heidi to me. You know the one about a little girl living with goats on a mountainside. What a wonderful story.

The libraries have a theme every summer. A couple years ago the theme was Pause to Read and they had a poster of a puppy reading through a stack of books. Too cute. I enjoyed reading my animal series I had been working on at the time. Well since its a series I guess you could say I am still working on this with my co-author Everett Martindale. I told him The Animals Used By God series would never be finished. There were so many bible stories and animals that I supposed we could just write from now on. That year I traveled to read at the Amador County Library in Pioneer California.

I read my Military mommy book when I read to Sgt Yano Library program at Schofield Army barracks when my daughter was stationed in Oahu. The children and I marched and saluted as I read the pages.

I always like to sing a few songs too. In fact I get asked to sing at the libraries as much as read these days. Libraries are just fun places to go to anytime of the year, but they really work overtime during the summer.



This year the theme was based all about Sports. Perfect to read Rod’s adventures on golf books. Rod brought his golf club, golf balls, and let the kids try it out first hand. He read his story and sang a couple song with his guitar and the kids loved it. we went to the Children’s Library downtown Little Rock. Maumelle Library. and Nixon Library in  Jacksonville so far this month.


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Its fun to do a Hawaiian program for the kids. Show a bit of hula and tell them about whale watching, and sea turtles. I let them play my ukulele, rain stick and bamboo sticks,  and of course they want to see pictures of the volcano.


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I use to take my children to the library all the time when they were little. They would sit on the floor and look at pictures. They would read some and took great care in each picking out books to bring home. And they were Free books too, what a plus. How can you beat that?  My kids read a lot of books and they all did well in school. I think it really helped to have joined in on fun programs and reading challenges at the library. I just love the library. A great way to spend the summer. So just wanted to say Thank you.

my books can also be found on Amazon …



Tee Time

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It’s summer time, the kids are out of school. What to do? Let play some golf and start them young says Rod Ragsdale, author of “The Adventures of Andrew on the Golf Course”… its a great outdoor sport for the whole family.



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A fun short story for young children to inspire them to get out there and learn the game of golf. In this series of golf stories Rod tells about how there is a lot more going on on the golf course then you’d think. There are amazing trees and flowers, lots of small animals, insects and wonderful birds.

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There is nature all around for families to discover. In his first book he tells the true story about how Andrew saves a little duck, and how golf brings out a person’s character.

Its a tender Go-Ask-Dad story line in each book as Andrew learns how to be a better golfer and about being a better person all around.  golf pictures 027

Golf is a game you can challenge yourself or your friends.

It’s summertime. Let play a game of golf!

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Rod Ragsdale has been in the golf industry for 40 years. Now he is retired and plays golf every morning for fun.


Reading and singing at schools


I have enjoyed reading and singing for schools. Military Mommy was my first book. This is a wonderful true story about a military family. We salute the American soldier and their families.



The second storybook was The Happy Pumpkin, Patch. I have read this fun holiday book at the the Good Earth Garden Center Pooches and Pumpkins Festival for 3 years now. They have my books displayed.



We had lots of fun with Twas The Mouse Before Christmas. Reading at the Arkansas State Capital annual Christmas Tree Lighting and for Holiday House in Little Rock, as well as many schools. We are scheduled to read again in 2016.




I now have audio books with songs for my stories with the help of Cindy Reyes and Rod Ragsdale. We make a great team and love the work we do teaching children.




Singing at Nursing Homes, a great generation part 2, Jan-April 2016

Singing at nursing homes and for assisted living residents is so rewarding. They seem to appreciate the music we share from the oldies, country, patriotic, gospel, soft rock, Disney, Hawaiian, and folk. We take pictures of where we have been but do not take pictures of the their faces, however it is their faces that touch my heart when we sing a song and I see them go from sitting half asleep in their wheel chairs to their eyes lighting up and begin to clap and sing along. There is something wonderful in those faces when they start to remember through a song. It makes me wonder what kind of life did they have? What war, what work, what love, what families they had? My father had Alzheimer’s and forgot so much, but when I sang a song he remembered he could sing every word. Those songs would lite up in his eyes and he would say, “You made my day” so I found music reaches a part of our heart, music goes to the soul like nothing else can. It’s amazing and God has blessed me with the passion of music. I teach music to children at school during the mornings and the afternoons I sing at nursing homes. It is my gift, so I sing.

Rod Ragsdale and Carol Dabney

Rod Ragsdale and Carol Dabney play music for the very young and the very old.

January at Elmcroft in Maumelle Arkansas with our one small speaker and one microphone we shared.

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snow and nursing home humor

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in a bigger room at Elmcroft a few weeks later with a bigger speaker and two microphones.

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Elmcroft asked if we would twice a month. Rod likes to tell a joke or two …sometimes he is funny!

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in February we went to Lakewood Nursing Homer in North Little Rock  for their Valentines Program

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Mardi Gras program at Pleasant Valley Nursing Home

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we sang Oh When the Saints Go Marching In, Mardi Gras Time, and Proud Mary

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oh below is my son Josh… he plays the ukulele too. I lived in Hawaii for 15 years and all my children are musical and we would often play music as a family at the nursing homes on the Islands. This is Joshua’s senior photo. He attends UCA now.

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March and the St Patrick’s program at Lakewood… I love that they have the same white tree up for Christmas, then change to hearts for Valentines and then add the green hats for St Patrick’s celebration.

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In March and April we also went to Valley Ranch, Stonehaven, Brairwood and Andovere nursing homes in Little Rock.

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Got hula… got Hawaiian luau music

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Love to sing patriotic programs… Rod and my dad were in the Navy…my sister is a retired Air Force Lt Col. and my daughter is a Army captain.

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in April there was more Hawaiian fun. Looking forward to more. We are working on recording a album of our own music for a summer time release 2016 Nothing Better Than You… of songs we have composed.

other music available at Amazon



Radio Show -call host 516-387-1637 March 7 interview


People have asked where to call during radio interview this Saturday night March 7… Through the Looking Glass radio show with Kinia is out of Atlanta and is a family program. I will be interviewed about my books and music. Call in at 7pm Eastern Time (6pm Arkansas Time) to talk to host Kinia Colbert to comment or ask questions during interview 516-387-1637 Thanks for your support.

author, illustrator and composer Carol Dabney

author, illustrator and composer Carol Dabney

author - illustartor  - composer Carol Dabney library reading and music programs

author – illustartor – composer Carol Dabney library reading and music programs


Through The Looking Glass with Kinia

Through The Looking Glass with Kinia. She will be interviewing Carol Dabney about children's book Saturday March 7, at 7pm Eastern time out of Atlanta.

Through The Looking Glass with Kinia. She will be interviewing Carol Dabney about children’s book Saturday March 7, at 7pm Eastern time out of Atlanta.

Kinia and her radio program Through the Looking Glass will be talking with Carol Dabney

Kinia and her radio program Through the Looking Glass will be talking with Carol Dabney

Radio interview with Carol Dabney by Kinia Colbert out of Atlanta Through The Looking Glass Saturday night program March 7, 2015  at 7 Eastern time

Radio interview with Carol Dabney by Kinia Colbert out of Atlanta Through The Looking Glass Saturday night program March 7, 2015 at 7 Eastern time

Growing Bows and Butterflies  - new 2015 children's story book about butterflies  by Carol Dabney

Growing Bows and Butterflies – new 2015 children’s story book about butterflies by Carol Dabney

Why WE Walk written to help children understand  the Alzheimer's Disease by Carol Dabney... New book 2015...

Why WE Walk written to help children understand the Alzheimer’s Disease by Carol Dabney… New book 2015…

author, illustrator and composer Carol Dabney

author, illustrator and composer Carol Dabney

I am so excited to be as to a guest on Through The Looking Glass radio show this coming Saturday night with Kinia Colbert. I have some new children’s books in the works: “Growing Bows and Butterflies” about a caterpillar named Carlos who has lots of personality and big dreams. We watch Carlos go through the many stages of a butterfly’s life from egg to the beautiful winged creature migrating to Mexico for the winter. This story has a wonderful song that goes with it, written by wordsmith Donna Watkins and composer Rod Ragsdale called “On The Wings Of Dreams” We have all become a team this past year working on several stories about winged creatures such as honeybees, birds and butterflies.

Also new this Spring is “Why We Walk” a book for young children to help them understand the Alzheimer’s Disease. Many of my stories are bilingual translated by Cindy Reyes, which adds an enriching cultural experience to young children. We read all fall and straight through Christmas all around the Little Rock area and the children enjoyed our interactive programs which now has stuffed animals and puppets and of course music.

With Spanish teacher Cindy Reyes

With Spanish teacher Cindy Reyes

I am very excited to be working at Blue Chair Recording Studio with musician Rod Ragsdale who has helped composed several songs for our Animals Used By God Series created by Everett O. Martindale and myself. These books will be audiobooks with songs. Rod adds guitar and harmonica as well as vocals to our presentations.

musician Rod Ragsdale

musician Rod Ragsdale

with Musician Rod Ragsdale

with Musician Rod Ragsdale

One of our most exciting events was presenting Christmas music and Twas The Mouse before Christmas at the Arkansas State Capital at their annual Christmas Tree Lighting in December.

With Spanish teacher Cindy Reyes

With Spanish teacher Cindy Reyes

Twas The Mouse Before Christmas

Twas The Mouse Before Christmas

Events coming up is a children’s writers workshop at the children’s library Monday afternoon March 23.
Saturday March 28 is the Central Arkansas Fiction Writers meeting. Other authors such as Heather Sutherlin and others in this writers group have pulled together sharing ideas and helping each other. I love Indie Publishers writers and illustrators.
Saturday April 11 we will be presenting a story and song for the Junior League Little Readers Rocks at the Children’s Library.
I will be attending the Craighead County Author Fair in Jonesboro April 18 and NEA Writers meeting with Linda Nance and Donna Watkins. So many people helped me learn along the way.
St Paul Public Library has invited me to read for their summer reading program June 13.
and a Meet the Author event Saturday June 20 at the Hillary Clinton Children’s Library in Little Rock

I received a contract from Mockingbird Lane Press this week, to look over for them to become my publishers, for my father’s biography “Dance Me Home.” It was endorsed by the Alzheimer’s Association last year and featured in Senior Moments Magazine. Editor Dustin Hood introduced me at a Barnes and Nobles meet the author event last August.

Northeast Arkansas Writers Linda Nance and Donna Watkins  supportive writers at Barnes and Nobles meet the author event hosted by editor Dustin Hood Senior Moment magazine

Northeast Arkansas Writers Linda Nance and Donna Watkins supportive writers at Barnes and Nobles meet the author event hosted by editor Dustin Hood Senior Moment magazine

I illustrated pictured for children’s author Dale Black for his Amanda Adventures and then Donna Watkins asked me to illustrate for honeybee book while we were recording the song for her project. I love illustrating for my author friends. I have a fun time getting to know the characters to their stories this way. They become apart of me. I have cute little bees and butterflies and a bunch of stuffed animals that go with my stories all over my apt. It makes my life colorful.

We loved reading for school assemblies

We loved reading for school assemblies

I returned from my trip to Hawaii in August. I Read for the military children at Schofield Barracks and Sgt Yano Library on base and then at the Amador County Library “Paws To Read” summer reading program in California on my journey home. Great trip. My family sisters and children have been such an inspiration to me and helped me with photography and promotions and editing and losing weight. Hugs to you all. My daughter was deployed and I brought back and kept her two year old daughter Aliyah Jane while she was gone overseas for 3 months. What a kick that girl is!!! That’s when I began writing those stories about a little girl named Jane in the storybook “Growing Bows” All those adorable girls at school wearing huge bows in their hair. Southern Bells who wear bows. I could not resist a story.

Hula and song at Amador County Library  Califonia

Hula and song at Amador County Library Califonia

My grand daughter Aliyah Jane and I at St Mark's School where I teach music

My grand daughter Aliyah Jane and I at St Mark’s School where I teach music

hula is for everyone

hula is for everyone

Cindy, Rod and I had a few birthday parties and luaus along the way as well and a couple more recording sessions to finish our work for Spring. Everett is still coming up with animals. Rod is a sweetheart and has some great ideas of his own that we have started putting together. More to share later. The end of 2014 and beginning of 2015 has been an exciting time so far and now looking forward to my interview with Kinia.

You can find all my books and music on http://www.amazon.com


I would love it if you listen to THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS radio show with Kinia Cobert this Saturday March 7, at 7 and call in…

If you have read one of my books please leave a review on amazon for others readers


Thank you so much Carol Dabney

Nov 8, 2014 Alzheimer’s Walk Little Rock 8am Clinton Park

Nov 8th at 8am Meet at the Clinton Presidential Park in Little Rock, Arkansas and walk with thousands of others to make a difference. Alzheimer’s Walk 2014

Alzheimer's Walk 2014 is November 8th in Little Rock Arkansas. We walk to make a difference.

Alzheimer’s Walk 2014 is November 8th in Little Rock Arkansas. We walk to make a difference.

My dad Navy Man Robert Jones Junior in his later years at Three Rivers Nursing Home in Marked Tree Arkansas.

He might have forgotten yesterday, but he never forgot his days during WWII

He might have forgotten yesterday, but he never forgot his days during WWII

I wrote my father’s biography while he lived in the nursing home, and altho Alzheimer’s made life difficult, he had a lovely story and remembered the details of the past. I am glad I got a chance to listen and write about his life in the book “Dance me Home” a military story, a love story, an American family story… My dad is the reason I walk.


Carol Dabney author of Dance me Home, endorsed by the Alzheimer's. Walk to make a difference.

Carol Dabney author of Dance me Home, endorsed by the Alzheimer’s. Walk to make a difference.

Afterwards linger to enjoy food and music and story time. Find me at the KIDS ZONE. Bring the kids and I will have candy bag for the first 100 kids. A story and song for all.