Saturday, January 7, 2017

New format for updating your bio information for the NCWN-West blog


I would appreciate your help in updating your bio information for the NCWN-West blog. I would prefer members create a full bio in a word document. The member should then save the document as a file called  Bio for (add name).

Whenever there is a change to the member's bio, that person should update the bio information in the word document, and send it to me with a request that the bio be updated. This will enable the admin to cut and paste the new document over the old bio.

I have a couple of members that are already using this format, and it works very well. However, if the member cannot create their bio in this manner, than admin will surely help them.

Thank you for your assistance!

Joan Ellen Gage,
Admin for the NCWN-West Blog

Friday, January 6, 2017

Please check out the new page, A Day for Writers, on the NCWN-West Blog!

You will find A Day for Writers link in the right hand column of the blog, under pages. This event is a one day conference sponsored by the North Carolina Writers' Network-West and the Jackson County Public Library, in Sylva, NC at the library, 310 Keener St. Sylva, NC 28779.  Content for the event will include: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, YA and Children's Writing, Marketing and Publishing, something for all writers.

Here is the link:

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Amazon has a good deal for you on two of Tom Davis' books.

The R-complex and  Helloooo Vietnam 364 Days and a Wakeup, books by Tom Davis, NCWN-West member, are showcased in a recent Amazon E-Blast.

The books are FREE if you participate in the Kindle Unlimited and/or the Kindle Owners' Lending Library:
NOTE Amazon Prime members who own a Kindle can choose one book from each month with no due dates.

This eBook is the second chapter of the Tom Davis' memoir: The Most Fun I Ever Had with My Clothes On: A March from Private to Colonel. In his memoir the author relates his experiences during the thirty-one years spent in the US Army, rising through the ranks from private to full colonel. Twenty of those years he served with US Army Special Forces (Green Berets). This book chronicles his time in three combat zones: Vietnam, Bosnia, and Iraq/Turkey. Included are his experiences commanding Special Forces Operational A Detachments which specialized in Underwater Operations, High Altitude Low Opening Parachuting, Mountaineering, and Small Atomic Demolitions Munitions as well as two Special Forces Battalions and a Joint Special Operations Task Force. Each chapter covers his duties and responsibilities at the Army Installation where he served. Sometimes funny. Sometimes sad. Always interesting.

What could happen when members of an Atlanta car theft ring, in the process of stealing her car, kill the pregnant wife of an ex Special Forces demolition expert?
John Crown believed that his Special Forces training and missions existed now only as distant memories. But when his pregnant wife is killed in an “accident” at the hands of cold-blooded, professional car thieves and racketeers, something else dies too: John’s new life as a husband, soon-to-be father, and successful software engineer in Atlanta, Georgia. To track down his wife’s unknown murderers, John sets a series of ingenious–and deadly–traps for unwitting, criminal prey. John fast becomes the underworld’s worst nightmare: a Special Forces-trained vigilante who obeys no law except the one that will bring him peace–the law of revenge. What he doesn’t know is that some of his prey welcomes the challenge, anxious and willing to play his deadly game–to win.
The R-complex is a fast-paced action adventure novel packed with organized crime, drug cartels, terrorist groups, revenge killings, brutal murders, improvised demolitions, a man who proves to be the ultimate killing machine, a female assassin, and a Special Forces A Team infiltrating Colombia, South America, to bring two villains to justice.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Two Excellent Poets for A Day for Writers

A Day for Writers, May 6, 2017

Kathryn Stripling Byer
We are delighted that the first woman Poet Laureate of North Carolina, Kathryn Stripling Byer, widely published and highly praised member of NCWN-West, will teach a two-hour workshop at A Day for Writers, Saturday, May 6, 2017. 

 Her poetry, prose, and fiction have appeared widely, including  Hudson Review, Poetry, The Atlantic, Georgia Review, Shenandoah, and Southern Poetry Review.  Often anthologized, her work has also been featured online, where she maintains the blogs "Here, Where I Am," and "The Mountain Woman."  

Her body of work was discussed along with that of Charles Wright, Robert Morgan, Fred Chappell, Jeff Daniel Marion, and  Jim Wayne Miller in Six Poets from the Mountain South, by John Lang, published by LSU Press. Her first book of poetry, The Girl in the Midst of the Harvest, was published in the AWP Award Series in 1986, followed by the Lamont (now Laughlin) prize-winning Wildwood Flower, from LSU Press.  Her subsequent collections have been published in the LSU Press Poetry Series, receiving various awards, including the Hanes Poetry Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers, the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance Poetry Award, and the Roanoke-Chowan Award. She served for five years as North Carolina's first woman poet laureate.  She lives in the mountains of western North Carolina with her husband and three dogs.

Catherine Carter

Catherine Carter, poet and teacher at Western Carolina University, will be a presenter at the conference giving us two of the finest poets in the region.  

“Catherine Carter’s unique poems are a joy to read and hear aloud, and they yield more and more subtle satisfactions the longer you live with them,” said Elizabeth Addison, head of the WCU English department. “It’s been an honor to share her department.”

A resident of Cullowhee, Carter coordinates the English education program at WCU. Her work has appeared in Poetry, North Carolina Literary Review, Tar River, Main Street Rag and Cider Press Review, among others.

She had work in the Best American Poetry 2009 anthology, and has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her first book, “The Memory of Gills,” won the 2007 Roanoke-Chowan Award.

“The Swamp Monster at Home is a most valuable collection of poems. Catherine Carter treats the sometimes scary materials she addresses with poise and wit, humor and frankness. Her self-possession is not armor plate; she is as vulnerable as you and I, as the deer that come to drink at the darkest river. She speaks with the kind of grace that is gained only after facing daunting difficulties with resolute courage. I admire everything about this book. Everything.”—Fred Chappell

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Poet Maren O. Mitchell has work published in Pedestal Magazine Issue #79 with an audio link

Poet Maren O. Mitchell has had her poem "Camouflage Addict", published in issue #79 of Pedestal Magazine, an webzine of poetry, fiction, non-fiction and interviews. The poem is published with an audio link. You can access the poem here.

Maren O. Mitchell’s poems have appeared in Tar River Poetry, The Pedestal Magazine, Poetry East, The Crafty Poet II: A Portable Workshop, The World Is Charged: Poetic Engagements with Gerard Manley Hopkins, Chiron Review, Hotel Amerika, Iodine Poetry Journal, The Lake (UK), Appalachian Heritage, The South Carolina Review, Southern Humanities Review, Skive (AUS), The Classical Outlook, Town Creek Poetry, Appalachian Journal, Pirene’s Fountain, Wild Goose Poetry Review and elsewhere. Her work is included in Negative Capability Press Anthology of Georgia Poetry, The Southern Poetry Anthologies, V: Georgia & VII: North Carolina and Sunrise from Blue Thunder

Mitchell's poems are forthcoming in The Lake, Poem, Chiron Review and Appalachian Heritage. Her nonfiction book is Beat Chronic Pain, An Insider’s Guide (Line of Sight Press, 2012)  and is available on Amazon.

Mitchell has taught poetry at Blue Ridge Community College, Flat Rock, NC, and catalogued at the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site. In 2012 she received 1st Place Award for Excellence in Poetry from the Georgia Poetry Society. For over twenty years, across five southeastern states, she has taught origami, the Japanese art of paper folding.

A native of North Carolina, in her childhood Mitchell lived in Bordeaux, France, and Kaiserslautern, Germany. After moving throughout the southeast U.S., she now lives with her husband in Young Harris, Georgia, on the edge of the national forest.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016


A Day for Writers, one day conference sponsored by the North Carolina Writers' Network-West and the Jackson County Public Library.

When: Saturday, May 6, 2017, 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Where:  Jackson County Public Library, 310 Keener St. Sylva, NC 28779

Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, YA and Children's Writing, Marketing and Publishing, something for all writers. 

Presenters include: Terry Kay, novelist and short story writer, Catherine Carter, Poet, Tara Lynne Groth, freelance writer and journalist, Deanna Klingel, author of YA and children's books, Glenda C. Beall, poet, writer and teacher, and Gary Carden, playwright, storyteller and author. 
Terry Kay

We held such an event in 2014 that was highly praised and well-attended. The Jackson County Public Library with the meeting space in the beautiful old Courthouse, is a perfect place, centrally located for those who live in the NCWN-West Region. 

Watch this site for a list of more presenters. 

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Writers--what we are doing now

With everyone thinking about Christmas and shopping, we writers often put our wordsmithing on the back burner. In my area, we stop most of our writing events until spring warms us up. Coffee with the Poets and Writers in Hayesville, NC starts anew March 16, Moss Memorial Library at 10:30 a.m.

Writers Night Out is cancelled until spring also. Karen Holmes, who does such a great job with this event, will notify us when that popular gathering for writers will begin in 2017.

The NCWN-West Poetry Critique group continues to meet each month. See the events page on this site to see how to contact Janice Moore, facilitator for the group which meets at Tri-County College in Murphy, NC.

The Prose Critique group that meets at TCCC has gone on hiatus until spring.


The big news for our region is, A Day for Writers,  the conference on Saturday, May 6, 2017 at the Jackson County Public Library in Sylva, NC. Several presenters are on board, but you will hear more after Christmas. Mark the date on your calendar now.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Brenda Kay Ledford Received Paul Green Award

Brenda Kay Ledford received the Paul Green Multimedia Award from North Carolina Society of Historians for her blog:  Blue Ridge Poet.

NCSH held their Diamond Jubilee Celebration and Award Luncheon November 5, 2016 at the Stone Center in North Wilkesboro, NC.

For information:

Last Writers' Night of the Year, Nov. 11, Blairsville, GA

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Newton Smith featured at Coffee with the Poets and Writers in Hayesville, NC

Coffee with the Poets and Writers meets Wednesday, November 16, 10:30 a.m. at the Moss Memorial Library in Hayesville, NC. 


This month Dr. Newton Smith  retired professor at Western Carolina University will share his experience of walking El Camino de Santiago, the 500 mile pilgrimage in Europe. Smith wrote a poem a day reflecting on the physical body, nature, and the spiritual as he traversed the Way.

His book is Camino Poems—Reflectionson on the Way. "Because it was autumn, many days I gleaned blackberries, grapes, apples, figs, peaches and other fruit and chestnuts along the way. It meant that my attention was focused on the abundance of this earth instead of on my narrow self and its minor concerns. My attention often fell on butterflies, snails, ant hills and the abundance of rocks,” Smith said.

Poetry has been an essential part of Newton Smith’s life for more than fifty years. Wanting to write poems was what motivated him to leave Georgia Tech and major in English at UNC Chapel Hill. After a three-year tour in the Army as a Russian linguist, he returned to UNC for his Ph.D. 

In graduate school he was one of the founding editors along with Russell Banks and William Matthews of Lillabulero Magazine and Lillabulero Press, then one of the significant publications of the small press movement. His dissertation was The Origin of the Black Mountain Poets, one of the earliest studies of that movement. 

He has taught poetry to a wide range of writers, from second grade to retirees as well as undergraduates and graduate students. He has published widely in literary magazines beginning in the 1970’s, including Southern Poetry Review, Carolina Quarterly, Ann Arbor Review and others. His most recent poetry publications are in the Asheville Poetry eview, Rivendale, Main Street Rag, Pisgah Review, and Jonah. 

Bring a couple of original poems or a short prose piece for open mic which is a special part of the event. You will find a receptive audience. Join the group for lunch at Angelo’s on the square.