The Inspired Mic Returns!!!

Yes, The Inspired Mic is back and better than ever! We have secured The Europa in the European Village as our venue. The event will kick off Thursday, March 31st at 6:00pm. Ticket prices remain the same, $10.50 advance ticket sales (online here: Inspired Mic Tickets) and $15 at the door.

The Europa will be offering a $10 buffet meal for those who would like to eat and enjoy the evening. With the purchase of a ticket, you receive entrance into the event, a drink ticket which can be used for beer, wine, soft drink or water, and entry into the end of the evening raffle.

We are looking forward to our new digs. The atmosphere is perfect for The Inspired Mic ambiance. As we enter into our fourth year, we look forward to what our local talented folk have to offer! So come on out! Get your tickets now as seating will be limited!!!


Ashley Flores May 2015 Inspired Mic Presentation Video

The Inspired Mic draws on local creative people to present their creations to a live audience. Many incredible moments occur, often when you least expect. Only the presenter knows what the audience will witness. The variety of entertainment becomes so divergent as to cause surprise to be a common element of the evening.

Magicians, musicians, writers of all genres, artists, actors, motivational speakers, nine-year-olds, eighty-eight-year-olds. Diversity off the charts. The following video of Ashley Flores is a plucked snippet from an evening in May 2015 at The Inspired Mic. Enjoy…and get your tickets for November’s event here: The Inspired Mic


The Inspired Mic Recap – October 20, 2015

loglineWhat Went on Tuesday Night!!!

The Inspired Mic Tuesday night played to a full house. What a night! As always, we had tears, laughter, impressive presentations, good food and a great time! Evenings like this are difficult to find anywhere else. The entertainment began with Sh’mal Ellenberg’s touching, poetic ode to Linda whose battle with cancer looms large once again. His heartfelt presentation of her strength and gentle nature was at once sad and a testament to a wonderful woman. Sixteen-year-old Angelica Timothy brought something new and different, as she often does. This night she sang a song she composed. The lyrics amazed as they addressed a hypothetical person on the verge of suicide, with the eloquent a powerful refrain of “You’re not worthless, and they’re not worth it…” I continue to say our young people are much more talented and insightful than they are portray by our media.

Carol Welsh brought us a heartwarming real-life story of her adopted son having his birth mother come into his life. An incredible family bond between the three of them felt so warm and amazing, that is a story you would not want to miss. To this day, decades later, the bond remains strong as ever. This is the type of story we should all hear more often. Alexandra King delivered a sci-fi oriented piece that is part of a collaborative project. As always, she delivered vivid imagery and dark, laugh-out-loud humor. Another of our teenage presenters, she presented with poise and confidence.

Newcomer to The Inspired Mic impressed us all with his lengthy poem “Live On” which he recited from memory. The poem took us through many of the ups and downs of life, and sent the strong message that through everything, we still “Live On.” Eighty-eight-year-old Harvey Baron had us laughing and in awe of his touching ode to his heart and how they (he and his heart) have survived all these decades together. Harvey is a treasure, and anytime you get a chance to hear him recite a story, all I can say is – enjoy.

Surprise guest of the evening was Mr. Steve Boone of The Lovin’ Spoonful fame. He read a chapter from his book, “Hotter Than a Matchhead” about the ill-fated trip where he attempted to sail a load of marijuana to Jamaica back in December of 1980. His book truly is a must-read book. After our intermission, Mel Johnson broke out his karaoke machine and sang a Dylan tune. Mel has one of those voices that you just do not expect. He has great voice control and he tunes into a lyric as well as anyone. Heidi Tassone brought a humorous piece this time about a Jewish family who decides (at least the mother did) to celebrate Christmas instead. As extended family members arrived at the house, funny hi-jinks ensued.

David Kozba, another of our teenage presenters, and a first-time presenter at The Inspired Mic, brought his own brand of sci-fi to the audience. His enthusiasm was infectious and his story held interesting premises. Renny Roker brought a chapter from his book “Positivity” and delivered the story about Casey Kasem of American Top 40 fame. Renny always strives to deliver the positive message and this night was no different.

Tricia Culligan presented a touching ode to her son and her abiding love for him throughout the decades. I was choked up on this piece as it delivered sentiment on that level a parent truly loves to access with regard to their children. Tricia’s voice is soft and soothing but contains so much strength, missing this presentation would have been sad. Jim Farrell read from his book “Kiss Me Kate” and as always, brought smiles to everyone. Jim has a knack for getting the audience in tune with him and his stories are fun and easy to follow.

Mystic Mel Melvin finished up the evening with a hilarious take on social issues. Mel always delivers fun everywhere he goes, and he’s consistently brought fun and laughter to The Inspired Mic over the years. If you missed Tuesday’s event, you missed a special one. Then again, they’re all special, aren’t they?

When you put a collection of creative people in one room and give each of them six minutes to impress an audience with whatever they believe is entertaining, you cannot help but produce an evening of delight. The Inspired Mic, now in its third year, strives for this each month. The next performance is Tuesday November 17th. The way to remember the date is the third Tuesday of each month brings The Inspired Mic to town. Make plans now to come on out and enjoy the festivities in November before all that holiday hullabaloo. You’ll be glad you did!

Heidi Tassone – The Inspired Mic – October 20, 2015

The Inspired Mic is at Cypress Knoll Golf Course August 18th. The Inspired Mic boasts writers of all genres, magicians, musicians, mentalists, actors, motivational speakers, painters, just to name a few. The write-ups you read on this site were all written by the presenters as a way for you to get to know them. Pick your tickets up now, because they are $10 in advance, $15 at the door! You may get tickets in person at Change Jar Books, and at the Cypress Knoll Golf Course Country Club. You may also purchase advance tickets at The Inspire Mic

blobHeidi Tassone

Heidi Tassone grew up in the Bronx, New York and currently resides in Florida with her husband, Joe and her dog, Brutus. She’s won several writing contests for her short works, including Star of Wonder, Deadly Dating, Our Little Secret and Maxine’s Valentines Surprise, and has five tales published in an Anthology called, Mosaic, A Collection of Short Stories . She is also published in Gems Magazine. Heidi is a graduate of The Institute of Children’s Literature and The Long Ridge Writer’s Group where she successfully completed short fiction and novel writing courses. She enjoys her quiet life in Florida where she can freely write stories and novels that keep readers at the edge of their seat.
Heidi first aspired to write when having lunch with her now husband, Joe. He mentioned a dream he had which seemed very realistic. Heidi told him she always wanted to write a novel, but never tried. With encouragement from her husband, she took several writing courses online.
While driving to work, a thought came to her regarding a women living in New York having visions of murders, only the murders weren’t in New York. They were somewhere tropical. In search of the reason behind her visions, she discovers the murders are real, but taking place in Florida. Thus sets off a world wind of turmoil and intrigue for her protagonist, Lisa Martin. From finding out the truth about her family, to romance, to becoming the focal point of the murderer, Lisa Martin is in for a ride of her young life. Hence, “Behind Green Eyes.” becomes a reality.
Because of an online writing group,, one of the secondary characters becomes a favorite. So began a second novel, not yet completed, “Deadly Secrets”, staring a New York detective, Peter Sharpe searching for the killer of his former Captain.
Heidi enjoys writing to keep the reader surprised. She also loves short cliff hangers throughout her stories. Hopefully she will find the time to get “Behind Green Eyes,” published and “Deadly Secrets,” completed.

Jim Farrell – The Inspired Mic – October 20, 2015

The Inspired Mic is at Cypress Knoll Golf Course August 18th. The Inspired Mic boasts writers of all genres, magicians, musicians, mentalists, actors, motivational speakers, painters, just to name a few. The write-ups you read on this site were all written by the presenters as a way for you to get to know them. Pick your tickets up now, because they are $10 in advance, $15 at the door! You may get tickets in person at Change Jar Books, and at the Cypress Knoll Golf Course Country Club. You may also purchase advance tickets at The Inspire Mic

Jim FerrellJim Farrell

Jim Farrell moved to Florida in June of 2013. After he arrived here, he completed his first novel, Brooklyn Boy, a semi-autobiographical novel about a young boy growing up in the 1940s and 1950s in Brooklyn and Long Beach, NY. When you read it, you will find yourself falling in love with the young Puertoricana, Anita Sanchez, the hero’s young girlfriend. One person who does not love Anita is the hero’s mother. The conflict between the boy and his mother creates compelling reading. Who will win in the end? The most often heard comment from readers: “It brings me back to my childhood. I loved it!”

After publishing the novel, Jim published a second book, a collection of short stories, Kiss Me, Kate and Other Stories. KMK is set in a variety of locations and illustrates the depth of the human spirit, the importance of laughter and the miracle of love. Bill Reynolds, columnist for the Providence Journal, recommended the book in one of his columns.

This summer Jim completed his second novel, The Extraordinary Banana Tree, about the fall of Saigon in 1975. Again it is semi-autobiographical. The author was Manager of Flight Operations for Air America. The main character, Billy Dobson, is Manager of Flight Operations for Air America. The reader will also fall in love with Cheryl Flynn, the heroine, and a beautiful, amazing woman. Jim seems to fall in love with all his heroines. EBT was featured in the fall issue of the Air America Log.

Jim just took Michael Ray King’s Write a Book in Thirty Days course, and actually completed the first draft of his third novel, Mikey’s Quest for Father God, during the course. He has completed the first rewrite and is working on editing now. After final editing in Ohio, the book will be published this fall.

He is currently working on a second collection of short stories, The Committee and Other Stories. Anyone who has ever lived in a community with a HOA and the self-appointed enforcers of real and imagined HOA rules will love the title story. One story, It All Started One Saturday in Perth, is now one of the author’s favorites. If the author likes it, it must have a pretty heroine. It does, Sky Winters. She appears in two other stories in the collection.

Jim is a member of the Florida Writers’ Association, and recently published a short story in their magazine. He has had a few local book signings. His books are available at Change Jar Books in Flagler Beach and The Book Rack in Palm Coast. They are also available in the Flagler County Library in Palm Coast and the Volusia County Library. And, of course, on Amazon and B&N.

Tom Sisti – The Inspired Mic – October 20, 2015

The Inspired Mic is at Cypress Knoll Golf Course August 18th. The Inspired Mic boasts writers of all genres, magicians, musicians, mentalists, actors, motivational speakers, painters, just to name a few. The write-ups you read on this site were all written by the presenters as a way for you to get to know them. Pick your tickets up now, because they are $10 in advance, $15 at the door! You may get tickets in person at Change Jar Books, and at the Cypress Knoll Golf Course Country Club. You may also purchase advance tickets at The Inspire Mic

The Magic of Tom Sisti

Tom Sisti magicMy magic career began in the early 2000’s. I attended an Adult Ed class in Clifton, NJ High School. The class was entitled Introduction to Magic. The instructor was Dennis Telischak, a professional magician in northern New Jersey.

It was a 6 week class on Thursday nights. One night fell on the evening of Dennis’ “Magic Meeting”. Dennis belonged to the International Brotherhood of Magicians. His “Ring” or Chapter, #113, was for the Lyndhurst, NJ area magicians.

Most of the students attended the meeting. Just by chance, two popular magicians from northern New Jersey performed there; Rocco and Tony Hassini. I was extremely impressed with both men.

I was so impressed; I joined the Ring that night. Months later, I became the Secretary for two years, then the President for two years, then back to Secretary, and a second term of President. I am now in Ring #251, the Daytona Beach magicians. This Ring was inactive for four years. With the help of Harry Allen of Daytona Magic Shop, we now meet the second Thursday of each month for dinner at Bob Evans in Palm Coast.

I started with children’s’ magic, and did not enjoy it. I then turned to close-up, strolling, and walk-around magic. This is for a restaurant, cocktail hour type of setting. This caters to adults and families. I enjoyed this venue very much.

I still do strolling magic today, and have added parlor/small stage magic. This is a great venue for magic, also. I have come to enjoy parlor magic as much as strolling magic.

I can be seen performing at Grand Openings & Ribbon Cuttings. I also volunteer at Florida Hospital Flagler, and will perform at some of their events. I also perform monthly at Grand Oaks Nursing Home & Rehab.
Magic is an art. It requires lots of time and practice. Being able to perform the mechanics of a magic trick is a small part of being a magician. Redesigning the trick to your personality, and changing the “patter”, or verbal dialog is huge. Finally “acting” is a very large part of being a magician.

Harry Houdini once quoted: “A magician is an actor playing the part of a magician”. And finally practice, practice, practice is what keeps us as amazing as we need to be.

Aaannnddd We’re Off!!!

loglineTuesday, October 20th, The Inspired Mic rises again! Yes, we will be at the Cypress Knoll Country Club Bistro on Easthampton Blvd in Palm Coast. We have a great lineup forming. A magician has already signed on, as have a number of teenagers. It’s always an experience to hear what our young people are creating.

The Inspired Mic continues to bring local, talented people onto a public stage where they can reveal the fruits of their creative efforts. This event is something to support, as there are not many, if any, venues that allow for such a broad range of creativity. In the past couple years, we’ve laughed so hard we cried, blushed, been horrified, entertained, informed, motivated, inspired and many, many other wonderful life experiences.

Coming very soon, we will have the bios of some of our presenters. This will allow you some insight as to what they are working on as well as show a little of who they are. We do look forward to seeing you at Cypress Knoll on the 20th, and we hope you will support us by telling others about our unique event! Tickets are available now at Cypress Knoll Bistro, Change Jar Books, and online (simply click the link at the top of the page to purchase.

Remember, tickets at the door are $15!

We’re Taking a Month Off!

Michael Ray King 12 16Yes, The Inspired Mic is on vacation! I am entered in the “Senior Games” in Palm Coast, and I have a competition on our regularly scheduled evening. How I qualify for “Senior” I’ll never know, but I will be at FPC shooting hoops and going for gold!

The Inspired Mic will return on Tuesday October 20th at the Cypress Knoll Golf Course Bistro. We are looking forward to a wonderful evening of creativity. We do have a few spots open for presenters, so email me at: if you would like to present.

See you in October!

The Inspired Mic Recap August 18, 2015

loglineAugust 18th Recap

No matter who steps up to the mic, it seems we always have an enjoyable evening. Last night was no exception. In fact, I believe the presenters stood out as quite exceptional.

First up was Alexandra King who delivered high action, blood, tension, and all manner of anxiety. Her story jumped out of the gate running and didn’t slow down one iota throughout. Sh’mal Ellenberg followed with a poignant and revealing story about his decision to become sole caregiver for his father who was suffering from Alzheimer’s. His well-written narrative was delivered quite well.

Laura Federmeyer exercised her writer presentation wings with an excerpt from her newest book, “Mystery of the Old Mill.” This preteen reader came across well with lots of intrigue and action that kept us all engaged. Susan Slater brought us a Dan Mahoney Mystery excerpt from her new book, “Hair of the Dog.” The reading contained a murder, a fire, and a rescue all in the span of about five minutes.

Angelica Timothy, one of The Inspired Mic’s teenage readers, delivered an insightful look into the impending return to school and the hassles attached to that return. From lazy, education-phobic students to poor administration, Angelica delivered a somewhat blistering look at the reality of our school system. Her observations were met with much support from the audience.

After the break, Mel Johnson stood up to the microphone and segued us into the fact that he does not write poetry, but he DOES enjoy one form of poetry – music. Mel then proceeded to sing karaoke, a Kris Kristofferson tune, “Loving Her Was Easier.” We were all amazed at his voice and his ability to not only carry a tune, but cultivate it well for our ears. Bodil Haheim, aka Lady Love Rebel, followed Mel with an original song titled, “Sharing” from her upcoming album “…but Alive!!!” Lady Love brings passion and power with a voice that can be soft or gravel, loud or gentle, and lyrics she penned herself from her heart.

Ernest Gallo brought us some backstory as well as recent events surrounding the 1967 attack by the Israeli’s on the USS Liberty. Ernie is one of the survivors of that attack, and he is on a mission to overcome the governmental coverup of the incident. Renny Roker brought us quite the poignant story about his father making the decision to move his family from somewhat horrific living circumstances into a place the family could blossom and grow. This very moving piece of writing came from the first chapter of his book titled, “Positivity.”

Jim Farrell surprised us all with a very adult reading from his new book, “The Extraordinary Banana Tree.” This excerpt stood as incredibly hilarious, gross, shocking, and entertaining. Jim has such a way with humor even in the more vile circumstances of life, and this presentation was a true gem. The visuals he created will be in my mind for some time to come! Last, but certainly not least, Kevin Cox delivered another hilarious real life (wink, wink) piece of writing, this time about growing up in Red Hook, NY. Needless to say, hijinks were afoot. Suffice it to say things were blown up and Kevin, er, Shawn escaped unscathed. This man like Jim who read before him, has a wonderful way with humor.

I must say this. Last night our presenters filled two hours of our time with amazing stories, poems, and songs that entertained us at a very high level. Each presenter did themselves proud. The talent we have around us here in Flagler County is astounding. Please look these folk up and get hold of some of their work.

Susan S. Slater – Inspired Mic Spotlight August 18, 2015

The Inspired Mic is at Cypress Knoll Golf Course August 18th. The Inspired Mic boasts writers of all genres, magicians, musicians, mentalists, actors, motivational speakers, painters, just to name a few. The write-ups you read on this site were all written by the presenters as a way for you to get to know them. Pick your tickets up now, because they are $10 in advance, $15 at the door! You may get tickets in person at Change Jar Books, and at the Cypress Knoll Golf Course Country Club. You may also purchase advance tickets at The Inspire Mic

Susan SlaterSusan S. Slater

Finally! I’m being called a Florida writer! This is a big thing. If locale is almost another character in your novels (think snow in Fargo), moving is truly starting over. Leaving New Mexico after thirty-nine years meant no more mesas, adobe churches, mountains, Pueblo Indians, green chili vs. red . . . you get the picture. Writing about a new environment is always a challenge to get it right. And leaving the old is bittersweet.

But I was smart enough to make Dan Mahoney an insurance investigator—he could move with me! The series didn’t have to die, just imbed itself in new surroundings. And Hair of the Dog was born! Florida has over fifty per cent of all the working greyhound race tracks in the States—and one is just twenty miles from where I live. How could I pass up a setting like Daytona Beach Kennel Club and Poker Room?

Of course, half way through writing I’d wished I’d taken W.C. Fields advice: “Never try to act with a kid or a puppy. They’ll upstage you every time!” Writing is no different. It’s tough to include pets in your character roster. Trust me, if you feed the dog or cat on page twenty and haven’t taken it for a walk by page forty, your readers are going to let you know! And those furry critters have to have a personality—they can’t just appear and sit around.

And even though I write to entertain, it’s always nice to be able to use one’s writing to raise awareness. I’d like to think I never pass up a good cause and finding homes for retired racers is about one of the best. I’ve dedicated Hair of the Dog to two groups: Prison Greyhounds and A Ticket Home. The first highlights the training these track retirees receive before finding their forever homes. And a ticket to this new life can be purchased for just seventy-five dollars. There is, of course, if I do say so myself a pretty good mystery in the midst of all the dogs and racing.

So what’s next for Dan Mahoney on the Florida slate? Well, I’ve heard some relics have been stolen from the Basilica in St. Augustine . . . so a little tale called Epiphany is in the works.

*     *     *

Susan moved to Palm Coast from Taos, NM and has taught at the college level for over 40 years using degrees in theater, English Lit and Adult Education.

She has ten novels and one short story in print. Five mysteries in the Ben Pecos series: Pumpkin Seed Massacre, Yellow Lies, Thunderbird, A Way to the Manger and Fire Dancer. Two stand-alones: Five O’clock Shadow, a mystery, and 0 to 60, women’s fiction. Hair of the Dog is the third book in the Dan Mahoney series behind Flash Flood and Rollover. Susan’s short story, Eye for an Eye, was chosen by Tor for inclusion in the anthology of paranormal stories commemorating the fiftieth year of Rod Serling’s Twilight Zone. Susan would be the first to say that writing is just plain old hard work but she can’t imagine doing anything else!