Frequently Asked Questions

Because I often get the same questions from many of my readers, I’ve created this area as a sort of catch-all. Before emailing me a question, you might want to check below to see if the answer is there. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, email me your question/questions and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.


Contacting, Contracting, Inviting, Interviewing or Mailing Donny Bailey Seagraves

How do I contact you? Use my contact form or email me.

How can I buy a signed copy of Gone From These Woods? Visit my online store, Junebug Books and Collectibles.

Who is your agent? Andrea Brown.

How can I get permission to use an excerpt from Gone From These WoodsGo here.

How can I get you to make an appearance at my school, writer’s conference, convention, trade show, or other event? Email me or visit my school visits page. Note: I am presently not doing any in person appearances due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

How do I get information on optioning the movie rights for Gone From These Woodsrandomrights@penguinrandomhouse­.com

About Donny Bailey Seagraves

Are you really a native of Athens, Georgia? Yes! I was born in the original Milledge Avenue location of St. Mary’s Hospital in Athens, Georgia. I’ve lived in the Athens and Winterville area my entire life, with the exception of three and a half years in Cleveland, Tennessee. You can read more about me on my About Me page.

Advice to Authors

How did you sell your first book to Random House? I attended a SCBWI SpringMingle Writers conference in Atlanta, GA in February 2007. One of the editors there was Michelle Poploff, VP and Editorial Director of Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books. As a result, I was able to sell the manuscript that would eventually become Gone From These Woods to Michelle without an agent. Note: This almost never happens. But it happened to me. To read exactly how it happened for me, read my breakthrough article from the October 2011 issue of The Writer Magazine.

How can I get published? Study your craft by reading books on writing, attend conferences where you can listen to and meet editors and agents and published writers, and never give up. 

What are your tips on writing and rewriting? For me, writing is rewriting. I realized after going through the eight month rewriting and editing process with my editor that I had never gone far enough in my rewriting on the nine books I wrote before Gone From These Woods

Books, and Other Published Writing


Why did you write this book? I wanted to tell a story based on a real life event that had haunted me since my childhood.

Is it based on a true story? Yes. Gone From These Woods was inspired by a real life event that happened in the family of my second grade teacher many years ago in Athens, Georgia. Even though my story is based on a real event, it is not a retelling of that event. My characters, plot, and setting all are fictional.

Is Gone From These Woods just a retelling of the real story? Nope. It’s a totally fictional novel. In the real event, there was no hunting, woods, alcoholic dad, etc. I made my characters, setting and story up. Really.

How did you come up with the setting for your book? It came from my early morning exercise walks around my rural neighborhood in Winterville, Georgia, where I lived while writing this book.

How did you create your fictional characters? I used memories of my uncle who died young for the uncle in my book. I combined parts of my son, brother, nephew and neighbors down the street for the main character, Daniel. Many of the other characters also were inspired by real life people I knew or know.

Is Gone From These Woods a kid book or an adult book? It’s a children’s middle grade novel for young readers aged 9 – 12. It also appeals to some young adults and adults.

What research did you do to write Gone From These WoodsI had to learn how to shoot a gun and I had to learn a lot about hunting. I also had to make sure all the details in my book fit with the 1992 era my book is set in, meaning no cellphones, computers etc. I also researched the stages of grief.

Do you have a book trailer for Gone From These WoodsYou’ll find one here.

Do you have lesson plans and/or study guides for Gone From These WoodsYes. Discussion questions/guide here.

Is there a paperback edition of Gone From These WoodsYes. The Yearling paperback edition of Gone From these Woods was published February 8, 2011. Both the Delacorte Press hardback and the Yearling paperback editions of Gone From These Wood are now out of print but you may find copies on my Junebug Books and Collectibles website on other websites including The Kindle e-book version is available here

Is there a sequel to Gone From These WoodsNot yet, but hopefully some day.

Is there a movie of Gone From These WoodsNot yet, but hopefully some day.


What did you write before Gone From These WoodsI wrote nine other books that are not yet published and hundreds of magazine articles, newpaper columns, poems, and short stories, many of which are published. Visit my About Me page to read some samples of my published writing.

Tell me about your next book? I am working on several different books, some fiction and others non fiction; some for children and others for adults. You can find information on some of my forthcoming books on the books page.

Didn’t find the answer you were looking for? Send me a question or comment using my contact form.


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