Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Coffee with the Poets and Writers July 8 at Joe's Coffee House

The NC Writers’ Network-West will hold the monthly Coffee with the Poets and Writers at Joe’s Coffee House, 82 Main Street, Hayesville, NC. This group will meet Wednesday, July 8 at 10:30 a.m..

Coffee with the Poets and Writers is open to the public at no charge. Bring a poem or short prose, 1000 words or less, and read at Open Mic. Joe’s Coffee House serves fine coffees and teas, as well as bagels and snacks. Cindy and Norma make all feel very welcome at Joe’s. Two local members of NCWN-West, Estelle Darrow Rice and Glenda Council Beall are featured on the program this month.
Estelle Rice
Estelle Rice is a North Carolina native who has lived in other states but came back to spend retirement in the mountains in Cherokee County. She holds a BA degree in Psychology from Queens University, Charlotte, NC and a MA degree in counseling from the University of South Alabama, Mobile AL.

Her short stories and personal essays have appeared in numerous anthologies and journals. Her book of spiritual poems, Quiet Times, was well received and highly praised. She has taught writing for NC Writers’ Network-West and for Writers Circle around the Table in Hayesville, NC.

Glenda C. Beall
Glenda Council Beall began Coffee with the Poets and Writers in 2007 and continues to facilitate the event. Her poetry and prose have been published in newspapers, anthologies, online and academic journals, and in her chapbook Now Might as Well be Then published in 2009. She published a family history book Profiles and Pedigrees, Thomas C. Council and his Descendants, in 1998. She is a Georgia native, a graduate of the University of Georgia and a former elementary school teacher. She now teaches writing for adults at Tri-County Community College in the community enrichment program and at her home studio, Writers Circle, in Hayesville. Beall maintains two personal blogs, and
Her poetry is inspired by memories of the past, her large family and her impressions of what she sees and hears in the world around her. She writes about everything from growing chickens to dealing with grief.

The community is invited to Joe’s to listen to the readers, to read, to mingle with the writers and poets, and all are welcome to join us for lunch across the street at Angelo’s. Contact NCWN-West Representative, Glenda Beall, at 828-389-4441 or  for information

This is a program of the state literary organization NC Writers’ Network.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Change of venue for Poetry Group July 2nd

The NC Writers' Network-West Poetry critique group facilitated by Janice Moore will not be held at Tri-County College in Murphy this month -July. The college is closed for the holidays.

The group will meet, however, at the Moss Memorial Library in Hayesville, NC at 6:00 p.m. Anyone who has trouble with steps 
can enter at the end of the library across from the Post Office. 

Observers are welcome.

Join the Beebes for Writers’ Night Out, July 10

Husband and wife writers, Jo Carolyn and John Beebe, will entertain the audience with their fiction, poetry, and memoir.

       An open microphone follows their reading for those who’d like to share their own writing. Writers’ Night Out, takes place at the Union CountyCommunity Center in Blairsville, GA on Friday evening, July 10. The event is free and open to the public. Food and drinks are available for purchase, but attendees should arrive by 6 pm to allow time to be served before the program starts at 7 pm.
John and Jo Carolyn Beebe have lived in Towns County, GA for twenty years. They recently celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary. They have three daughters, six grandchildren, and one great-grandson.
Jo Carolyn was born at the tip of the Appalachian Mountains in northeast Mississippi where oral family history was handed down to her by her grandparents and great-grandfather -- history rich in tales of the early settlers, Civil War encounters, and the hard life of the rural south. While studying creative writing at Miami University, she discovered those family legends provided material for short stories and poetry. Her publication credits include MainStreet Rag, Lonzie’s Fried Chicken, Lights in the Mountains, Heroes of Hackland, Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, Clothes Lines, Women’s Spaces Women’sPlaces, View from the Top, and Abingdon Press.
John Beebe comes by his personal essays naturally. His mother was a poet and journalist for local newspapers, and his grandfather also was a writer. John is a retired civil engineer having worked in the paper industry in Wisconsin, Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio. He has enjoyed choral music most of his life and sang with the Atlanta Symphony and the Cincinnati Symphony for a total of thirteen years. In recent years he sang with the Mountain Community Chorus. John was born in South Bend, IN, grew up in Zion, IL, and graduated from the University of Illinois

Writers’ Night Out, sponsored by the North CarolinaWriters’ Network-West, takes place on the second Friday of the month, April through November. Prose writers or poets wishing to participate in the open mic can sign up at the door to read for three minutes. The Union County Community Center is located at Butternut Creek Golf Course, 129 Union County Recreation Rd., Blairsville, Georgia 30512, off Highway 129 near the intersection of US 76, phone (706) 439-6092.  
For more information, please contact Karen Holmes at (404) 316-8466 or

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Brenda Kay Ledford to read at the Folk School in Brasstown, NC, on Thursday, June 18, 2015, at 7:00 PM

On Thursday, June 18, 2015 at 7:00 PM, John Campbell Folk School and N.C. Writers Network West are sponsoring The Literary Hour, an hour of poetry and prose reading held at Keith House on the JCFS campus. This is held on the third Thursday of each month unless designated otherwise.  The reading is free of charge and open to the public.  Brenda Kay Ledford, who is an accomplished poet, will be the featured reader.  In addition, members of NCWN West will be reading sone of their own poems.  This presents an exceptional opportunity to hear a favorite local reader and enjoy poems by other members of NetWest.


Brenda Kay Ledford is a native of Clay County, North Carolina.  She's a retired educator and earned her Master of Arts in Education from Western Carolina University.  She studied Journalism at the University of Tennessee and was Creative Writing Editor of "Tri-County Communicator."

Her work has appeared in many journals including "The Broad River Review," "Charlotte Poetry Review," "Asheville Poetry Review," "Town Creek Poetry," "Angels on Earth Magazine," and other publications.  Finishing Line Press published her three poetry chapbooks and Kelsay Books recently printed her poetry book, CREPE ROSES.

Ledford has received the Paul Green Award from North Carolina Society of Historians seven times for her poetry books and collecting Appalachian history.  She received the Royce Ray Award for her poem, "Velma," and "The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature," nominated her poetry for "Best of the Net," in 2009.

Ledford's  two blogs include: and  She also promotes authors on


NorthCarolina Writers' Network-West is a program of the North Carolina Writers' Network. It was created in 1992 with the mission of supporting writers in the nine westernmost counties of North Carolina, as well as adjacent counties in Georgia, Tennessee and South Carolina and to alleviate the isolation of writers living in this mountainous area by providing programs, resources, and community.  Local members are from the counties of Cherokee and Clay in NC and Union and Towns in GA.

NetWest does this by providing many free, open to the public monthly events, as well as classes and workshops intermittently throughout the year, and annual events, such as a spring writers' conference. Writers of all ages, genres and skill levels are invited to join us.  For more information or to become a member, visit our website at

Local members will be sharing some of their works, both poems and prose, during this month’s Literary Hour at John Campbell Folk School immediately following Brenda Kay Ledford’s reading.

Babes On The Beach Women’s 2015 Fiction & Romance Writer’s Retreat Emerald Isle, NC August 23-27, 2015

Wilmington, NC June 10, 2015: Holloway Literary, a NC-based literary agency that represents Women’s Fiction, Romance, YA, Thrillers and non-fiction authors is sponsoring Babes On The Beach 2015, A Women’s Fiction and Romance Writer’s retreat at the Trinity Center on Emerald
Isle, NC.


• Anna Michels, Sourcebooks
• Rachel Burkot, Harlequin
• Elizabeth Poteet, St. Martin’s Press

Literary agents:     

• Sarah E. Younger, Nancy Yost Literary
• Melissa Jeglinski, The Knight Agency
• Michelle Johnson, Inklings Literary

Published Authors:

• Jen McConnel, Bloomsbury Spark
• Jennifer McQuiston, Avon, HarperCollins
• Sally Kilpatrick, Kensington
• Kimberly Belle, MIRA/Harlequin
• Susan Bishop Crispell, Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press

Babes On The Beach 2015 will take place at The Trinity Center, an ocean-front retreat center

located on Emerald Isle’s Salter Path.

In addition to offering craft workshops and genre-specific seminars, retreat participants will discover

the best way to select and obtain a literary agent and how to write queries. Each retreat participant will receive a detailed critique of their query and first 15 pages of their manuscript. Writers will also have the opportunity to pitch story ideas to agents and editors.

Babes On The Beach 2015 is an all-inclusive retreat that includes 4 nights at the beach, three

meals a day, all workshops plus daily yoga classes. Registration for a double occupancy room is
$599.00 and single occupancy is $699.00. Currently, the website features an Early Bird! Discount of
$399.00. Residents local to the area, or writers who want to find their own lodging may purchase a
Daily Pass that includes lunch for $199.00.

The Babes On The Beach 2015 website is . You may also follow them


Holloway Literary ( represents Best-Selling Amazon author Katie

Oliver, RITA 2015 Best Nominee for First Book author, Alyssa Alexander and Buzz Books 2014
Featured Author, Kimberly Belle. Founder of Holloway Literary and Senior Agent, Nikki Terpilowski is a native of North Carolina and a military spouse. She divides her time between Northern Virginia and North Carolina.

Contact: Nikki Terpilowski

Holloway Literary

Monday, June 8, 2015

Atlanta Poets Featured at Writers' Night

Friday Evening, June 12

6:00: Social Hour (food/drinks optional)
7:00: Featured Readers 
7:45: Open Mic

This month Kathleen Brewin Lewis and Patricia Percival Thomas (Trish) will read from their chapbooks. Prose writers or poets wishing to participate in the open mic can sign up at the door to read for three minutes.

A two-time Pushcart Prize nominee and a Best of the Net nominee, Lewis was a finalist for the 2014 Ron Rash Poetry Award. She is senior editor of the online journal, Flycatcher. A graduate of Wake Forest University, she also has an MA in Professional Writing with a concentration in creative writing from Kennesaw State University.  Her chapbook, Fluent in Rivers, was published in 2014 by FutureCycle Press. Her poetry and prose have also appeared in Valparaiso Poetry Review, Yemassee, Still: The Journal, James Dickey Review, Heron Tree, The Southern Women’s Review, and The Southern Poetry Anthology Vol. V: Georgia, among others.  
Thomas is the author of the chapbook, Bargain with the Speed of Light, published by Kattywompus Press in 2015. The book tells the story of a box of poems left by her brother after his death and how the mysteries there led to her practice of poetry.  Her poems also appear in Sixfold, The Southern Poetry Anthology Vol. V: Georgia, Town Creek Poetry, Stonepile Writer's Anthology Volume II, and other venues. In what Thomas says, “seems like a past life,” she graduated from Duke University and the Emory University School of Law. 

Lewis and Thomas are both part of the Side Door Poets group originated by Karen Paul Holmes, who also hosts Writers’ Night Out, which is a North Carolina Writers’ Network-West program, open to the public. The Union County Community Center is located at Butternut Creek Golf Course, 129 Union County Recreation Rd., Blairsville, Georgia 30512, off Highway 129 near the intersection of US 76, phone (706) 439-6092. map here (note the Holiday Inn on the map is now a Comfort Suites). For more information, please contact Karen Holmes at (404) 316-8466 or

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Coffee with the Poets and Writers in Hayesville NC - June 10

Last month there was barely enough seating room for all who attended Coffee with the Poets and Writers, a monthly event held at Joe’s Coffee Shop, 82 Main Street, Hayesville, NC. NC Writers' Network-West sponsors this event that meets Wednesday, 10:30 a.m. June 10.

Two local poets, members of NC Writers' Network-West, Joan Ellen Gage and Mary Ricketson are featured on the program this month. Coffee with the Poets and Writers is open to the public at no charge. Bring a poem or short prose, 1000 words or less, and read at Open Mic. Joe’s Coffee shop serves fine coffees and teas, as well as bagels and snacks. Cindy and Norma make all feel very welcome at Joe’s.

Joan Ellen Gage recently moved to Warne in Clay County from Florida where she worked as a dental hygienist. She says that much of her writing was inspired by her patients and their stories. Joan has published three books, A Redhead Looks at 60, Embracing Your Inner Cheerleader and Water Running Downhill!, both motivate and inspire middle-aged women, and women in general.

She writes on her two blogs, Traveling at the Speed of Now: and A Redhead Blogs at 60: .  

Joan enjoys photography, creating unique pictures and uses her own work in her books and on her blogs. She serves as an active administrator for the NC Writers' Network-West blog  and stays busy publishing good news from our members.

Mary Ricketson has been writing for many years and publishes a monthly column, Women to Women, in the Cherokee Scout newspaper. She is a Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor and an organic blueberry farmer. She writes to satisfy a hunger, she says, to taste life down to the very last drop. Mary is inspired by nature and her work as a counselor.

Her poetry has been published in Wild Goose Poetry Review, Future Cycle Press, Journal of Kentucky Studies, Lights in the Mountains and other anthologies. She published a chapbook I Hear the River Call my Name and most recently, a collection of her poems, Hanging Dog Creek. She is a Cherokee County Representative for North Carolina Writers' Network-West and president of Ridgeline Literary Alliance.

 She won the gold medal for poetry in the 2011 Cherokee County Senior Games/Silver Arts and silver medal for 2012 and 2013, and first place in the 2011 Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest 75th anniversary national poetry contest.

Come early for a good seat and plan to go to lunch with us after the reading. 
Contact NC Writers' Network-West Representative, Glenda Beall, at 828-389-4441 or  for more information.

Friday, June 5, 2015

City Lights Bookstore, Sunday June 14 - Byer and Krawiec Reading - You are invited!

Kathryn Byer & Richard Krawiec Joint Poetry Reading--City Lights Bookstore

Former North Carolina Poet Laureate Kathryn Byer and Richard Krawiec will be reading from their new collections of poetry on Sunday, June 14th at 1 p.m. at City Lights Bookstore. 
Kathryn’s new chapbook from Jacar Press, The Vishnu Bird,  a finalist in the 2014 Frost Place chapbook contest, "is both a memorial and memoir in lyric poetry. This clean-spoken, deeply-felt chapbook remembers the poet’s dear friend by tracing his vocation of anthropology, and honoring his spiritual depth through vignettes from the speaker’s own past."  David Baker, contest judge. 
Richard Krawiec will read from Women Who Love Me Despite. Krawiec is the author of two other collections of poetry, two novels, short story collection and four plays. He has been awarded fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and twice with the North Carolina Arts Council.  He is the editor of Jacar Press in Durham, NC. 
A wine and appetizers reception will follow the reading. 
 We invite you to come spend your Sunday afternoon with us.  

The crows wake up early,
claiming the day
with their black wings
and hungry beaks.

Dare you walk out
to claim your own morning?
Shield the sunflower sprouts
from their pillage?

What in the garden
is yours?  What in the forest?
If only, you say,
you could pitch your tent

amid green shoots
and blue shadows,
renounce the roots
holding you fast. 

Why do you let
the crows taunt you?
Throw down your toothbrush.
Let fall your nightgown

and walk out the back door. 
The grass blades will never
again feel so whetted, 
the earth underfoot so forgiving.
from The Vishnu Bird                                                                

                                               (cover painting, Suffusions, by Elizabeth Ellison)


cool air flowing through the screen
a curious cardinal tipping its head
at me from the empty feeder
as if to moor me to this day, as if aware 
that I drift still in that day our kisses
slid us down the grassy bank 
towards the reflection of a sky 
we didn’t feel we had to embrace
to own those breeze-rippled clouds
swaths of bright blue descended
to surface yes love there are things
we can’t claim a familiar table
with years of scars drawers
where my socks might hide beneath
your black lace underwear mindless
routines of coffee-making rubbish
but look at the heron circling
its wings bent in gray-blue welcome
landing in the shallows by the shaded bank
look at those clouds rising with the sun
from the shoreline to cover us like a quilt
look at how our fingers and mouths find 
ways to craft tightly what we do have
this boat drifting away from all moorings
from  Women Who Loved Me Despite

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Author Jack J. Prather’s tour to present personal and career life stories of 18 NC ‘Notables’

The 18 Notables in Jack Prather’s two books of biographies are exemplary North Carolina residents who made their marks anywhere in the state, nation or world. 

Each was selected after extensive research and recommendations from their peers; and for their record of giving back to the community. Each bio includes a photo-array that shows the Notable in various stages of her or his life.

The in-depth personal and career life stories of these men and women from North Carolina portrayed by Jack J. Prather will be the focus of discussion during his upcoming statewide speaking and book-event tour.

 Six Notable Women of North Carolina (238-pages/81-photos) published in January was Prather’s sequel to Twelve Notables in Western North Carolina (400-pages/134-photos) that was nominated for the NC Literary & Historical Association 2012 Ragan Award for Non-Fiction. Prather’s books are available at, online book sites, and bookstores and libraries by request.

The Hendersonville author founded the Young Writers Scholarship at Warren Wilson College in 2012 to honor the Notables in his books. He donates a portion of proceeds from sales to the fund, and asks fellow authors, writers and avid readers to lend their support. The next book in the ongoing series planned for 2016 will be Young Notables of North Carolina.

Favorable reviews of Twelve Notables in Western North Carolina appeared in the NC Libraries Journal and the NC Genealogical Society Journal; and for Six Notable Women of North Carolina in NC Woman magazine and The Hendersonville Lightning.

Information about scheduling an author appearance in your area can be obtained by calling 828-808-0660, or by emailing

Testimonials about the Notable series have come from TV icon Katie Couric, noted reviewer Rob Neufeld, writer and director of Writers Circle around the Table, Glenda Beall, music legend Doc Watson, former Governor Jim Hunt, former Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, former Supreme Court Chief Justice Jim Exum, biographer Bruce Chadwick, and educator Ron Partin, et al.

The Six Notable Women of North Carolina are :

Kathy Reichs of Charlotte: novelist and inspiration for the Bones TV series; certified forensic anthropologist.

Sharon Decker of Rutherfordton: former Secretary of Commerce; first female Duke Power VP; founder of Tapestry Group.

Jennifer Pharr Davis of Asheville: Appalachian Trail record hiker; National Geographic Adventurer of the Year.

Millie Ravenel  of Raleigh: Director Emerita Center for International Understanding; Friendship Force founder.

Kathryn Stripling Byer of Cullowhee: Poet Laureate 2005-9; Literary Hall of Fame; author of five poetry books.

Anne Ponder of Asheville: Chancellor Emerita UNC Asheville; Collegiate Honors Council fellow and president.

Kathryn Stripling Byer, first woman poet Laureate of NC

The 12 Notables in Western North Carolina are:

Judge Harry C. Martin of Biltmore Forest: former NC & Cherokee (EBCN) Supreme Court Justice.

David Holt of Fairview: Grammy winning musician; Doc Watson’s performing partner; storyteller.

Billie Ruth Sudduth of Bakersville: first woman named NC Living Treasure, basket art in Smithsonian.

Doug Orr of Black Mountain: president emeritus of Warren Wilson College, musician, singer, author.

GlenisRedmond of Piedmont: Hall of Fame Performance Poet; Kennedy Center Teaching artist; author.

Julyan Davis of Asheville: British Southern Art master oil painter; work shown in international galleries.

Joe Epley of Tryon: global public relations leader; PRSA Lifetime Achievement Award winner; novelist.

Dr. Olson Huff of Black Mountain: founding Medical Director of Mission Children’s Hospital; author.

Dr. Matt Hayes of Hendersonville: emergency physician pioneer, co-founder Emergency Dept. of Nurses.

Capt. Ray West, USNR-ret. of Flat Rock: Moldova World Children’s Fund founder; UNCA Alumnus of Year.

Richard Q. Ritter of Bakersville: NC Living Treasure studio glass artist; Governor’s Award as Fire Chief.

Jack J. Prather                                                


Friday, May 29, 2015


Submission Guidelines for the Thirteenth Annual Dogfish Head Poetry Prize
The thirteenth annual Dogfish Head Poetry Prize for the winning book-length manuscript by a poet residing in the Mid-Atlantic states (DE, MD, VA, PA, NJ, NY, WVA, NC and District of Columbia) will consist of $500, two cases of Dogfish Head Craft Brewed Beer*, manuscript publication by Broadkill River Press, and 10 copies of the book (in lieu of royalties).

The rules are: Manuscripts must be received by midnight, September 7, 2015 (Labor Day). Manuscripts received after Labor Day will not be considered. Eligible poets must reside in the above listed states and be twenty-one years of age or older by the date of the award. * The manuscript is to be submitted electronically in one MS Word document attachment. Send to Prize coordinator Linda Blaskey at Snail mail submissions will not be accepted.*

Send two title pages with each submission: one with the title of the manuscript, author’s name, address, phone numbers and e-mail address; the second with just the manuscript title. No manuscript is to have any author-identifying information other than the one title page and will be rejected if it does. The manuscript should have an acknowledgement page of poems previously published, and in which publications and/or websites they appeared. Judging is blind and double-tiered.

The manuscript must be book-length (between 48 and 78 pages of original work – no translations) and no more than roughly thirty lines to a page, including the poem’s title and two line-spaces between the title and the body of the poem. A poem may be more than one page. The book’s dimensions will be 8.5 inches by 5.5 inches, with a minimum of half-inch side margins, and printed in 12 point type, so avoid very long lines.

The award will be presented to the winner on Saturday evening, December 12, 2015 at the Dogfish Head Brewery in Milton, Delaware or at the Dogfish Head Brewpub in Rehoboth, Delaware (venue to be decided). The winner must agree to attend this event and to read from their winning book at a reception honoring the winner. The prize will be officially awarded by Sam Calagione, Founder and CEO of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and Distillery, or by another company official.

The author of the winning manuscript also agrees to provide, within ten days of notification, a color head-shot photograph for the back cover and a dedication for the interior of the book. The winner agrees to travel to Delaware at the winner’s expense for awarding of the prize. Dogfish Head will provide the winner one night’s lodging at the Dogfish Inn in Lewes, Delaware.

Dogfish Head Craft Brewed Ales retains the right to use any of the winning work in promotional materials.

For questions and more information contact Linda Blaskey, Prize coordinator, at

*North Carolina  Writers and Poets are under no financial obligations to Dogfish Head Brewery, and are not accepting gifts from Dogfish Head Brewery.