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Porter has book signing

Demopolis native Dee Porter came home from Mobile to kick off a book-signing tour of her first novel, “In and Out of Madness.” The event took place as part of the Demopolis Public Library’s “Lunch at the Library” program on Thursday, Nov. 12.

The book, published under her pen name, Nina Lee Snowden, has its basis in Porter’s own struggles with bipolar disorder.

It is the story of Lee Thames, who seems to attract violence — both physical and emotional — throughout her life. She seems to find solace in the arms of her first husband, but that does not last, as his actions and inactions push her into a series of affairs, which contribute to the demise of her marriage.

Her second marriage becomes her undoing, as she gets entangled in a web woven by her husband, Joe, a smooth talker who lies, cheats and exploits her in every possible way.

The book opens with Lee’s escape from a mental facility after an unsuccessful suicide attempt. She decides to take revenge on her husband, Joe, planning the perfect murder.

“This book is R-rated because it’s an R-rated life,” Porter told those on hand for the book signing. “It’s somewhat autobiographical and somewhat fiction. I took a basic story and I created a lot so it would work as a novel, but you’ll recognize some people in this book. Everybody’s name is different, and it takes place on the eastern side of the state, but there will be a lot of people you’ll recognize.”

When she lived in Demopolis, Porter ran “The Art Colony,” an artist studio at the corner of Washington and Commissioners in Demopolis. An avid painter at the time, Porter said she just woke up one morning and had the itch to write.

“I was just less and less happy when I finished a painting,” she said. “I had a studio to die for that my husband helped get for me, but I just told him that I’m going to start writing and that I wasn’t going to paint any more.”

Porter, now single, said she got her pen name from members of her family.

“Nina is my father’s cousin’s name,” she said. “Lee is my middle name, and Snowden is my mother’s maiden name.”

Porter said she has two other novels in the works that will utilize characters from her first novel.

Those wanting an autographed copy of “In and Out of Madness” should send $18 to cover the cost of the novel as well as shipping and handling costs to: Dee Porter, 8719 Court South, Mobile, AL 36695.