Sunday, April 24, 2016
Video excerpts from April 20, 2016, NCWN-West's Coffee with the Poets and Writers, with Brenda Kay Ledford and Nancy Simpson
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
NCWN-West's Coffee with the Poets and Writers to feature Brenda Kay Ledford and Nancy Simpson, on Wednesday, April 20, 2016, at 10:00 AM at the Moss Memorial Library, Hayesville, NC
Ledford's prose and poetry have appeared in many publications including: "Angels on Earth Magazine," "Our State Magazine," "Asheville Poetry Review," "Appalachian Heritage," and 30 anthologies printed by Old Mountain Press. Finishing Line Press published three award-winning chapbooks. Aldrich Press printed her poetry book, "Crepe Roses," that received the 2015 Paul Green Multimedia Award from North Carolina Society of Historians. She has received the Paul Green Award seven times for her literary works and collecting oral history. Ledford blogs at: http://blueridgepoet.blogspot.com.
For more information, please contact Glenda C. Beall at 828-389-4441.
Friday, December 4, 2015
|Brenda Kay Ledford and her mother, Blanche Ledford|
The picture above was first posted on Brenda's blog, She gave me permission to share it with all of you. Brenda Kay Ledford has been a member of NCWN and therefore, a member of NCWN-West for as long as I have been here, about twenty years or more. She lives with and cares for her mother, Blanche, also a published writer.
Brenda Kay's poetry books have won the Paul Green award from the North Carolina Society of Historians several times. She began writing poetry in Nancy Simpson's writing classes and began publishing her work very soon after. She is dedicated to promoting her community in various ways and we often see articles by Brenda Kay in the local newspaper. 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."
Blanche Ledford has not been able to get out much lately due to a fall and a broken hip earlier this year, and we have missed seeing her at our writing events, but she is doing better. Several of Blanche's stories of growing up in Appalachia were published in anthologies by Old Mountain Press. She and Brenda Kay co-wrote a book, Simplicity, about their lives here in Clay County NC. She won the Paul Green award for that book.
The new anthology edited by Celia Miles and Nancy Dillingham, It's All Relative, Tales from the Tree, includes one of Blanche's stories, Planting by the Signs. Curiosity Shop Books in Murphy, NC carries this book.
Brenda Kay and her mother preserve the old ways of the mountain people by writing about them.
Brenda Kay's most recent book of poetry is Crepe Roses published by Kelsay Books. This book also won a Paul Green Multi Media Award.
Besides posting photography that is a feast for the eyes, Brenda writes on her blog about interesting places to visit. Read about this goat farm right down the road from where I live in Clay county.
The Christmas picture of Brenda Kay and her mother, Blanche, warms my heart because I know they have the same loving relationship I had with my mother.
Visit Brenda Kay's blog to learn more about them.
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
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's two blogs include: http://blueridgepoet.blogspot.com and http://historicalhayesville.blogspot.com. She also promotes authors on www.linkedin.com/in/brendakayledford.com.
Thursday, April 2, 2015
|Brenda Kay Ledford|
April is poetry month and there is no finer way to celebrate than attending Coffee with the Poets, a monthly event held at Joe’s Coffee Shop and Trading Post, 82 Main Street, Hayesville, NC. North Carolina Writers Network-West sponsors this event which meets at10:30 a.m., Wednesday, April 8, 2015.
Recently a visitor to our area said, "This should be on a list of things to do here!"
Two widely published local poets, members of NCWN West, Brenda Kay Ledford and Nancy Simpson, 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, and snacks can be purchased.
Brenda Kay Ledford is a well-known poet and native of Clay County, NC. She holds a Master of Arts in Education from Western Carolina University. She has done post-graduate work in Appalachian Studies, and the theme of most of her writing is her Appalachian heritage.
Brenda received the Paul Green Multimedia Award from the North Carolina Society of Historians seven times for her books, her collections of oral history, and her blog Historical Hayesville. Her work has appeared in Our State, Carolina Country Magazine, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Appalachian Heritage, Wild Goose Poetry Review, Journal of Kentucky Studies, Asheville Poetry Review, Country Extra Magazine, Blue Ridge Parkway Silver Anniversary Edition Celebration, and many other journals.
Finishing Line Press published Brenda’s poetry books: Shewbird Mountain, Sacred Fire, and Beckoning. She co-authored Simplicity with Blanche L. Ledford. She is also an outstanding photographer as you can see on her blog, Blue Ridge Poet.
Nancy Simpson lives in Hayesville, NC. Through 2010 she served as Resident Writer at the John C. Campbell Folk School. She taught many of the poets and writers in this area in her classes there and at Tri-County Community College. She also taught poetry for ICL at Young Harris College.
Nancy is the author of three poetry collections: Across Water, Night Student, and most recently Living Above the Frost Line, New and Selected Poems (Carolina Wren Press, 2010). She also edited Echoes Across the Blue Ridge (anthology 2010). She holds an MFA from Warren Wilson College and a BS in education from Western Carolina University. She received a NC Arts Fellowship and co-founded NC Writers Network-West.
Simpson’s poems have been published in The Georgia Review, Southern Poetry Review, Seneca Review, New Virginia Review, Prairie Schooner and others. Her poems have been included in anthologies, Word and Wisdom, 100 Years of N.C. Poetry and Literary Trails of N.C. (2008). Her poems have also been featured in Southern Appalachian Poetry, a textbook anthology published at McFarland Press.
Visit her blog, Living Above the Frost Line to learn more about her.
Friday, November 14, 2014
See the complete interview here.
Congratulations, Brenda Kay.
Thursday, June 5, 2014
Monday, October 21, 2013
Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway sponsored this book project to celebrate 25 years of service to the Parkway. The silver anniversary commemorative edition included photographs, poetry, and prose by 47 writers.
The photography of Dr. Nye Simmons, a physician from Knoxville, TN, was featured. He photographed the Parkway for 10 years. This book brought the best images of his portfolio to the pages, paired with selection of the region's leading authors.
According to John Muir, "Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play and pray in, where nature may heal and cheer and give strength to body and soul."
For millions of people, the Blue Ridge Parkway is such a place. The 469-miles, carved across the Blue Ridge Mountains between 1935 and 1987, connects two national parks-Shenandoah in western Virginia and Great Smoky Mountains in western North Carolina.
Today there are 10,000 members of Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway and over 2,000 volunteers. For more information about Friends, contact: 800-228-PARK (7275), www.BlueRidgeFRIENDS.org.
Thursday, June 20, 2013
Brenda Kay Ledford will read from her poetry chapbook, BECKONING, published by Finishing Line Press, at the John C. Campbell Folk School on Thursday, June 27 at 7:00 PM. This event is sponsored by the North Carolina Writers’ Network West and the public is invited to this free event.
She’s former editor of Tri-County Communicator at Tri-County Community College and previous reporter for the Smoky Mountain Sentinel. She received an award from North Carolina Press Association for her feature on the John C. Campbell Folk School.
Ledford belongs to North Carolina Writers’ Network, North Carolina Poetry Society, Georgia Poetry Society, and a charter member of the Byron Herbert Reece Society. She’s listed with A Directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers, North Carolina Literary Map, and Who’s Who in America.
Her work has appeared in many journals including “Lyricist,” “The Broad River Review,” “Pembroke Magazine,” “Asheville Poetry Review,” “Main Street Rag,” “Charlotte Poetry Review,” “Wild Goose Poetry Review,” “Town Creek Poetry,” “Appalachian Heritage,” “Journal of Kentucky Studies,” “Our State,” “Byron Herbert Reece Society Website,” and many anthologies.
Her latest poetry chapbook, BECKONING, was endorsed by Glenda Beall, director of Writers Circle, and Robert King, publisher of FutureCycle Press.
Says Beall, “Brenda Kay Ledford’s collection sings with color and harmony. She lets us take a peek into her world as she shares her Appalachian roots in verse. We relate to the constancy of seasons in nature and in our lives. Digging in the dirt as her mother does each spring preparing her garden, lifts the spirit, and decorating graves of loved ones on Memorial Day perpetuate the love of generations. Throughout the snow, first greening of spring, summer’s roses, autumn’s harvest, and star-studded asters, the images in the book offer the reader the opportunity to feel, see, hear, and taste the beauty as well as the inevitable sadness of life.”
Ledford’s book, BECKONING, is available at the Clay County Chamber of Commerce and online at: www.finishinglinepress.com and www.amazon.com.
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Join us for Coffee with the Poets, 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, April 10. Blue Mountain Restaurant on the corner of Hwy 141 and Old Hwy 64 hosts this event each month. The restaurant is between Murphy and Hayesville, NC. The public is invited to attend.
|Brenda Kay Ledford, author of Beckoning|
Our featured reader for the month of April is Brenda Kay Ledford, author of a new poetry book, Beckoning, published by Finishing Line Press.
Her book is available locally at the Clay County Chamber of Commerce; Hayesville, NC; and online: www.amazon.com and www.finishinglinepress.com
Brenda Kay’s work has appeared in many publications including Yesterday’s Magazette, Our State, Pembroke Magazine, Appalachian Heritage, Broad River Review (Gardner-Webb University), Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, The Reach of Song, and other journals and anthologies. Ledford co-authored the book, Simplicity, with her mother, Blanche L. Ledford.
She’s listed with A Directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers and is a member of North Carolina Writers’ Network West, North Carolina Poetry Society, Georgia Poetry Society, and Byron Herbert Reece Society.
Ledford received the Paul Green Award from North Carolina Society of Historians for her three poetry chapbooks.
April is poetry month and there is no finer way to celebrate than attending Coffee with the Poets, now in its seventh year. Open Mic is for anyone who brings a poem or short prose piece.
This program is sponsored by NCWN West. For more information contact Glenda Beall, 828-389-4441.
Monday, March 4, 2013
a problem or entertain the reader.” Hope Clark
Hope Clark is someone I greatly admire. Her blogs and her newsletters are food for writers, in my opinion. So when she says a blog must either solve a problem or entertain the reader, I know she is right.
My Writers Circle blog is designed to give writers information about workshops and classes and the writers who teach at my home studio. At times, I throw in a post on the craft or my opinion.
Writing Life Stories has been all over the place since the beginning. It has changed in theme and content, but that is because I have changed since the blog was started in 2007. Many of my readers manage a blog or many blogs on various subjects. I understand that a blog concentrated on a theme like quilting, chicken farming, or single mothers raising kids, that discuss the problems and offer solutions is going to have a large audience. Those blogs require a concentrated schedule and plan I think. That might be too much work for me at this time in my life.
How I became a blogger and Netwest Writers was BornIt was fall of 2007 at a panel discussion at a writers conference that I realized what a blog was and what it could do. A young mother had written a book on stay at home moms working from home and she found out she could sell more of her books on a blog than by going through a New York Publisher. On the panel were three other writers who had found success from writing a blog.
I came home and told my husband I was going to learn how to blog, not for myself, but for the writers and poets in our chapter of NCWN. I had taken the job of Program Coordinator for NCWN West. Nancy Simpson and I had often talked about the problem of getting the voices of mountain writers in our area over the ridges and past the ranges into the rest of the world. I believed a blog was better than a website. A website at that time was static and unchanging. A blog gave us freedom to share new material everyday if we wanted. And the blog was free!
I was scared. After all, I didn't know anything about this new technology. Would our members accept this and use it? Would it do what I hoped it would? Soon I was holding classes on blogging and some of our members, Brenda Kay Ledford, Nancy Simpson, Carol Thompson, and Sam Hoffer began their own sites. What pleased me the most was that all of us were beyond the young stage. We were all over fifty. It wasn’t long before Netwest member and Poet Laureate of North Carolina, Kathryn Stripling Byer created a blog. When she became Program Coordinator for Netwest, she brought readers from everywhere to the Netwest blog.
I have been disappointed that more of our members have not used the Netwest Writers blog. We have a number of authors listed who have the capability to write posts and other members can ask for and get permission to post on the blog. It was created for our members.
I am so thankful, however, that Netwest Writers blog has been successful in promoting our writers and helping them reach across the state and around the world. We have readers from many different countries every day.
Nicki Leone, president of the NCWN Board of Trustees at that time built a website for the state organization and plopped our Netwest blog right on the front page. Since they have thousands of visitors every single day, those visitors saw us here in the mountains, clicked on our blog with little effort and read about our writers and our poets and playwrights. The voices of our writers have indeed reached beyond the mountains.
Where do we go from here?
I hope that other members of Netwest will post articles that appeal to readers. One of our members said the blog had simply become a bulletin board of upcoming events. We need to change that. We need posts that will keep us worthy of exposure on the home page of the NCWN website. We need an administrator who will help keep the blog on the radar of the search engines. Who out there is ready to do that?
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
The reading begins at 7:00 PM at the Keith House. Everyone is invited to attend and we hope you will.There is no admission charge.
Glenda Council Beall lives in Hayesville, NC. Glenda finds memories come to surface in her writing. Many of her poems, such as Clearing New Ground, from her poetry chapbook, are narratives that tell stories she remembers from childhood.
She is a multi-genre writer, but she first began publishing poetry in 1996, shortly after moving to the mountains. Her poems have appeared in literary journals such as Main Street Rag, The Journal of Kentucky Studies, Appalachian Heritage, Red Owl Magazine, and online in Wild Goose Poetry Review. One of her poems was chosen for Kakalak, North Carolina Poets, 2009.
Glenda’s poetry can be found in numerous and various anthologies including the recently released, Women’s Spaces, Women’s Places, and in From Freckles to Wrinkles from Silver Boomer Books. In 2009, her poetry chapbook, Now Might as Well be Then, was published by Finishing Line Press. Two poems from that book were recently re-published online by Future Cycle Press. Her poems will also appear in the Poetry Hickory anthology for 2010.
Her short stories have been published in online journals, Muscadine Lines; A Southern Journal and The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature. Her personal essays have been published in Echoes across the Blue Ridge, Reunion Magazine, and in Cup of Comfort for Horse Lovers.
Breath and Shadow, an online journal will publish a non-fiction article, Pass it on, in their July issue.
Glenda is past Program Coordinator for North Carolina Writers Network West, and now serves as Clay County Representative for Network West.
A graduate of the University of Georgia, she earned her BS degree in education. She began studying writing in 1996, attending classes taught by teachers in the writing program at the Folk School. She has attended workshops and writing conferences through the North Carolina Writers’ Network for fifteen years and has learned the ends and outs of writing and publishing. When she isn’t working on her own poems and stories, she enjoys teaching others the joy of writing. She is on faculty at John C. Campbell Folk School and will teach a writing class this summer, August 21 – 27. She is Director of Writers Circle, a writing studio at her home.
Brenda Kay Ledford is a native of Clay County, NC. Her work has appeared in many publications including Yestersdays Magazette, Our State, Pembroke Magazine, Appalachian Heritage, Broad River Review (Gardner Webb University), Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, The Reach of Song and other journals and anthologies. She is listed with A Directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers and is a member of North Carolina Writers' Network West, North Carolina Poetry Society, Georgia Poetry Society and Byron Herbert Reece Society.
Ledford received the Paul Green Award from North Carolina Society of Historians for her three poetry chapbooks. She co-authored the book, "Simplicity," with her mother, Blanche L. Ledford.
Ledford's readings are performances. She is a story teller as well as a poet and writer and you never know what surprise she has for her audience.
Thursday evening, June 16, promises to be an evening of fun for those who enjoy writing and writers. .
Friday, May 13, 2011
Nancy Simpson was presented a painting and plaque from the Clay County Historical Arts Council which read: To Nancy Simpson in appreciation for her years of devotion to the creative and cultural development of student and adults in Clay County.
painting by Reba Beck.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
The store is located one block south of the Blairsville Square on Hwy. 19/129. Jeff Hansen, owner of the Book Nook recommends calling the store at 706-745-7076 to reserve copies of this popular book.
Bettie Sellers, former Poet Laureate of Georgia,
Carole Thompson, published author and poet, from Blairsville
and Jo Carolyn Beebe of Hiawassee, Georgia, will be there.
Nancy Simpson, who is well-known for her years of teaching poetry and mentoring writers, and Brenda Kay Ledford award-winning poet from Hayesville, NC will be there.
Many people are purchasing the book to leave in their vacation cabin or condo for guests to enjoy. Others like the price of only $16.00 and they buy several for Christmas gifts.
A photo by Philip Sampson of Blairsville was chosen for the cover from a large number of submissions by artists and photographers throughout the southern Appalachians. Inside pictures are by Tipper Pressley of Brasstown and Seth Russell, formerly of Murphy.
Echoes across the Blue Ridge has something for every reader from short stories or non-fiction and poetry with subjects as varied as hunting dogs to reclaiming and restoring rivers.
Other well known writers with work in Echoes across the Blue Ridge are Steven Harvey, essayist and professor at Young Harris College, Kathryn Stripling Byer, former Poet Laureate of North Carolina, Gary Carden, storyteller and legendary playwright, and Thomas Rain Crow who has written and published more than twenty of his own works, including Zorro’s Field.
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Friday, December 12, 2008
C. Shirley Uphouse
The event is sponsored by Friends of the Library and Netwest.
Brenda Kay Ledford is one of the authors in the new anthology, Christmas Presence, published by Catawba Publishing. Brenda Kay, a poet and writer with two poetry books, Shew Bird Mountain and Sacred Fire, recently published by Finishing Line Press has been published in numerous magazines and literary journals such as Pembroke Magazine, Asheville Poetry Review, Main Street Rag, Appalachian Heritage, and Our State Magazine. Her first poetry chapbook, Patchwork Memories, received the 2005 Paul Green Multimedia Award from North Carolina Society of Historians.
Glenda Barrett's poetry chapbook, When the Sap Rises, was published earlier this year by Finishing Line Press. Her poems and stories have been widely published in magazines such as Woman's World, Yesterday's Gazette, and most recently accepted for the Journal of Kentucky Studies. Her story, The French Harp, one of the holiday stories in the anthology Christmas Presence, has been reprinted in The Georgia Magazine.
Shirley Uphouse, past Program Coordinator for Netwest, is author of a memoir, My Friends, My Dogs, and her work is widely published in magazines such as Dog Fancy, Smoky Mountain Living and others. One of the stories in her memoir can be read online in The Show Ring, http://www.blogger.com/. Shirley has been a professional dog show judge for over 25 years.
This event is a warm and inviting way to start the season each year. The audience gets involved by reading their own original poems and stories. While enjoying a table laden with a variety of refreshments served by Moss Library staff, attendees enjoy socializing with the writers and others from the community. Bring something to read or come and listen. Authors will be happy to sign their books.
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
The signings are listed below--jus ignore the first two. We're hoping for an Osondu signing in Waynesville and one in Marshall.
10-12:00, Oct. 25, Highland Books, 277 N. Broad St., Brevard, NC ( 884-2424)---in conjunction with the college's homecoming, Celia with Nancy Purcell (and Lana Hendershott read) and former dean/author E. Roberts (sold 12 books and the store kept 8, plus sold 10 of my two novels)
10-3:00, Nov. 1, Sanctuary of Stuff, Farm N Art, Woodfin, NC---a first time, long-day event; come and see us
11-1:00, Nov. 7, AB Tech, Holly Library (254-1921)--refreshments
10-12:00, Nov. 8, Curiosity Shop, 48 Valley River Ave., Murphy (835-7433)---with Nancy Sales Cash; Carole, Barbara, Brenda, others in the area, please come and join us; also 1:00-3:00 in Andrews, Curiosity Shop.
6:00, Nov. 19, Accent on Books, 854 Merrimon Ave., Asheville, (252-6255)--Byron Ballard arranged this; all who wish to read, please let us know
1-5:00, Nov. 29, Mountain Made, Grove Arcade, downtown Asheville (350-0307)--come by and visit; we'll be outside the store--and at Mountain Lore in Hendersonville 10:00-11:30)
2-4:00, Dec. 2, Hendersonville Library--Sherry Austin will be moderating this event; refreshments offered; all you H'ville writers, let us know if you wish to read; a two-hour slot but an hour or so of readings should be sufficient. Susan Snowden is doing publicity in Henderson County.
12-3:00, Dec. 6, Book Fair, McDowell Public Library, Old Fort--this event was formerly held in the historic Carson House; Julia N. Duncan will read; others welcome
10:45, Dec. 10, Givens Estates, 2360 Sweeten Creek Road (274-4800)--Mary Lou Welther arranged this event; we're hoping those authors/storytellers nearby will participate
Authors' bios reveal they have more than 45 published books among them.
This article by Nancy Purcell, Netwest Rep from Transylvania County, Brevard, NC
Monday, November 3, 2008
Brenda discusses her mountain heritage and how Nancy Simpson started her on the road to writing her award winning poetry. The cover design of Brenda Kay's collection, Sacred Fire, published by Finishing Line Press, comes from her own photograph of the historical courthouse on the square located in Hayesville.
This show on Common Cup will be shown several times each day for a week. Readers in north Georgia mountains and in Clay County can see it if they subscribe to Windstream Cable TV.
Sacred Fire on sale at Phillips and Lloyd books in Hayesville, NC and the John C. Campbell Folk School gift shop. Order online from Finishing Line Press.