A Formal Book Release Announcement

        I guess after all these years of yapping about it a formal book release announcement is last Tuesday’s news, but ta da! -today is my day.

        My book is now officially released. I was gonna tell you last week, but my agent made me wait. There were a few glitches in the Amazon link and the publisher wanted all the corrections to filter through the Internet before we went live and activated our website link.

        Somehow people found it anyway, though. Felix Miller bought the first copy. After just a few days the Amazon rank of “The Mandolin Case” went from 3 million to just over 100,000 in the world. I’m not sure how they found it, or who else bought it. This Internet is pretty big, I guess. I figure if I can get inside the top 100K and someday sell 3,001 copies that’s a hit for this country boy.

        Boy Scouts honor, my agent called last night to say it made it to number 56 in Amazon’s “country” book category before it was released. Beats anything I’ve ever heard of.  

        No one is an island, and this is more true for me than anyone. I can’t name everyone I should thank, but a short list includes my wife and kids, office staff, patients, agent, editor, picking pals, and blog buddies. It takes a community to make a writer out of a doctor and y’all did it.

        My folks weren’t too involved in this process; I felt like at their age they didn’t need the drama, but my Dad taught me to work hard and my Mom instilled my love of books. She put me in speed reading as a kid when I wanted to play baseball instead. I owe her all. I dread her reading the cuss words; it’s just not her style. I had to show the truth, though. (I’d rate my book PG-13 for language and tangential references to sex.)

        My book will not make everyone happy. Along the way some folks didn’t understand me. Without fail they were the rich and powerful. My wife said it was the plaid shirts and the mandolin. One big shot said, “You tell him I don’t negotiate with a hillbilly.” 

        He has since retired. I do not know the circumstances.

        I had to write it. After a lifetime in medicine I’m not the least bit cynical. I live by the 80/20 rule. I believe most people in medicine (and likely other walks of life I don’t know as much about) are good and want to do right. They fall in the eighty percent category.

        The trick is how to deal with the other twenty percent. All you have to do is figure out what motivates them, be it power, money, etc, and push the right buttons. Then you can put them in a position where they have no choice but to do right. They won’t like it, but they’ll go along because they have to.

        You remember Tom Cruise in “The Firm?” In the story he managed to get the Mafia positioned where it was in their best interest to stay at arm’s length. I didn’t deal with devious behavior of that degree, but it was the same dynamic nonetheless. At the end of the movie Cruise responded to someone who semi-apologized and said something like, “No, you did me a favor. The rest of my life I gotta look over my shoulder and worry every time I turn the ignition key my car might blow up, but you made me remember why I got into law to start with.”

        I am what I seem, a simple country boy who just wanted to raise a family, help a few people, and play music on my weekends off. I never forgot why I went into medicine, but I gotta admit a few people along the way did things that forced me to examine my position to a greater depth. 

        When you run into a bully, remember me. I’m like a bullfighter. I know that old bull is a lot bigger and stronger than I am. The brute is about half-testosterone poisoned and could kill me with one head-butt. I have to out-smart him. So, I’ll use a cape to obscure the brick wall behind it. I’ll wave it like a red flag and smile. “Please don’t charge through that cape, pal. I know you are big and strong, but I don’t think you can do it.”

        He’ll snort around and paw the ground in a fury. “No matador in a plaid shirt’s gonna tell me what to do.”

        Then he’ll charge headlong into the cape, and I’ll whisk it to the side at the last second. Of course, the bull crashes into the brick wall and gets knocked out. When he wakes up, he’ll ask what happened.

        What I never understood is the next time he’ll do it all over again. You can count on it.

        So, with “The Mandolin Case” and the series to follow I hope to show how to not let the bull (or bullies) run over you, just like Indie taught me. Who knows, it might come in handy for you someday.

        By definition if you enjoy my book, you are in the 80 group and not the 20. All I want to do is help you stay there. Perhaps you can enable your people to thrive too. What the bad guys don’t understand is that all of us who long for grace and dignity depend on each other, and we’re thick as thieves. To this day they still don’t know what hit ’em. (They ran into a brick wall!)

        So, now my book is out there. You can order it via my website. The link is www.themandolincase.com  If by some chance that link fails you, go to Amazon.com, check out the books category and search for “The Mandolin Case.” I’ve been told it is all operational now. 

        As always, any feed-back is appreciated. If you find errors, I’ll correct them. Doc’ll take all the help he can get in life. I appreciate all of you and thank you for sticking with me.

        All the best,

Dr. B

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40 Comments on “A Formal Book Release Announcement”

  1. Mrs. Chili Says:

    YAY!!! I’m going to order my copy this very afternoon!!

    Congratulations, Doc! YAY!!!

    • drtombibey Says:


      Bless your heart I was just getting ready to cruise over to your blog and let you know.

      I never forgot your words of encouragement when I found my agent. I wasn’t sure why the guy latched on to me.

      You said something like agents were a tough crowd and you were sure he’d decided I had the chops to make it to the finish line.

      Someday I’m gonna sign it for you.

      God bless you, chili. Tell all your students old Doc said you were right, and to never give up on their dreams.

      Dr. B

  2. newt221 Says:

    YIPPEE!!! Wow…If I had a way I would have the computer throw confetti and blow horns when you read this. Since I am not a magician….Just imagine it… WOW! Deep breath, you made it! Now, no resting on your laurels or any other part of your body for that fact! On to the next one!

    • drtombibey Says:


      It is a humbling day. I made it to the starting gait. Maybe they’ll let me write another one! (I’ve got no give up in me.)

      Tell you what friend. If any bullies ever get after you tell ’em they better watch out. That Tommy Bibey and all those crazy bluegrass brothers and sisters of his might come through town and give ’em a fit.

      Dr. B

  3. Karen Collum Says:

    Dr B., I’m so excited for you! Congratulations and what a wonderful day it must be for you. After all that hard work and dedication, you’ve earned it! Enjoy the knowledge that your book is being read and enjoyed by eager readers. (If they don’t enjoy it, they’re definitely in the 20 part of your 80/20 rule.)

    Blessings from the wonderful land of Oz

    • drtombibey Says:


      To me art is to toss your heart out there and see what happens. So far they haven’t stomped on it!

      Thank you so much for your help along the way. You helped me a lot with the MS and we won’t forget ya.

      For those of y’all who don’t know Karen she’s a fine writer of children’s books in Australia.

      All the best, Karen.

      Dr. B

  4. “You tell him I don’t negotiate with a hillbilly.” That’s a great line.
    He subsequently retired. I don’t know the circumstances. Concrete boots?

  5. Carmen Claypool Says:

    ‘Tia a proud day for the bluegrass family.

  6. Kathy Waller Says:

    Congratulations! I agree–unique is good enough. My copy is scheduled to arrive this Friday.

    • drtombibey Says:


      I hope you enjoy the story. I have my heart and soul in it.

      If by chance you find it ain’t your thing how ’bout telling Amazon John Smith really wrote it.

      Dr. B

  7. Felix Miller Says:

    Congratulations, Doctor B.,

    You need a Publication Party, Official. I bet the party music will be true bluegrass.

    Tomorrow I will be looking for the UPS truck all morning.

    • drtombibey Says:


      Well, forever and ever you have the first copy. That and fifty cents might get you a cup of coffee, but I am proud a man who knows true bluegrass got it.

      My goodness for some reason I didn’t plan a party but you are right on target about the music we’ll have.

      Dr. B

    • Felix Miller Says:

      Hooray, UPS delivers, a day early. Barbara and I are taking turns holding the book. I am interested to see that the publisher is listed as a Chattanooga outfit. Tickles me no end.

      I even took a picture of the book, which since everybody knows what it looks like already I won’t post here. But the link is:

  8. junebugger Says:

    OHH WOW! Congratulations! I’ll be giving you and your wonderful book (which I plan to get a hold of as soon as I can!) a shout out on my blog today

  9. […] If anyone has any other research experiences I try out, feel free to leave a suggestion in your comment. And I would also like to ask the writers reading this post why you write in a certain time period, be it the medieval or the present era. P.S. A shout out to our dear fellow blogger, Dr. Tom Bibey for the publication of his book, The Mandolin Case. […]

  10. Hey! It says on Amazon that it was released on May 25th!

    Congradulations, Dr. B, from all my heart. I can’t tell you how excited I am and how truly happy I am for you, because you fulfilled the ambition and dream and need to write this book.

  11. Kim Justesen Says:

    Yea Dr. B!!!

    I’m so incredibly proud and excited for you! I have already ordered my copy, and I am looking forward to having it signed in person. Go celebrate, and enjoy this achievement!

    Your friend,


  12. Ponder Says:

    Count me among that number of friends and fans both excited for and appreciative of you Doc!

  13. Randy Says:

    Wow! Already got my book from Amazon, now that’s service! Thanks Doc 🙂

  14. drtombibey Says:


    It has been a wild day today. My son and I were scheduled to play a golf tournament long before we knew this would be the official release day. (Amazon did get it May 25 buy my agent wanted to be sure all the glitches were out before we linked to the website and annouced.)

    I got a shipment of books to get ready for the Red White and Bluegrass festival. Word got out in Harvey County and I signed sixty books at the golf course.

    All of you have been so gracious. I need to respond to each one of you personally and I will before long. All of a sudden a lot is coming at me, but ya gotta dance with who brung ya and y’all will always be the folks who were there first. I’ll not forget you, you can be sure of that.

    Dr. B

  15. Randy Says:

    I’ve read 48 pages in the last 2 hours, so far…GREAT!

  16. Laura Says:

    Congratulations. Like birthing a baby, huh!
    I’m going to order mine this evening

    • drtombibey Says:


      I’ve always said men couldn’t ever quite be as important as women because we couldn’t have babies. Birthing a book is the best old doc could do, and it does give a fellow some tiny inkling of it. Ain’t nothing like the kids though.

      Dr. B

  17. ninakillham Says:

    Congratulations, Dr. B. Love the bluegrass/doctor combo! all the very best to you.

  18. danny fulks Says:

    Congratulations, Tom. My first book, the publisher risked 1,000. Within a week, he called the printer for more. Dan

  19. The Turning Point Says:

    Been following your book making since I met you in front of the Tivoli. Been an inspiration to me.

    Your agent buddy in Chattanooga is “poppin his buttons,” and grinning from ear to ear.

    He showed me a copy of your book the other night.
    Gotta get it.

    Love your postings along the way.

    • drtombibey Says:

      The Turning Point,

      Thanks so much. I hope to be back to Chattanooga soon.

      Today it got to #1 in the Amazon country book category. Unbelievable.

      I guess if Charlie Brown can marry the red-haired girl and make it to number one, even if the rank is fleeting, we all can have hope the impossible can happen.

      Dr. B

  20. My agent wants me to srat a blog for my book, which is almost finished. Do you think all the time you’ve put in this blog has been the most effective use of your witing time.

    • drtombibey Says:


      My case might be somewhat odd, but I think the blog and my readers taught me how to write over time. I would have finished my project without it, but I believe the constant feedback took it to a higher level than I could have done alone.

      The best thing about the blog was the connection with a lot of cool people. I am gregarious by nature and took to the blog because I enjoyed the sense of community so much.

      I guess the answer is for me the blog was like playing music; pure fun. I never thought too much about the time involved.

      Dr. B

  21. Baby Bibey Says:


    Hey Dad! You’re on sale at Barnes and Noble too! Pretty cool.

  22. Melissa Says:

    Congrats! That is truly amazing. Your blog has truly been an inspiration for me as a writer trying to achieve this dream of mine. 🙂 I know that it’s possible and one day, I look forward to announcing my book release! 🙂

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