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Showing posts with label NCWN. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NCWN. Show all posts

Sunday, October 4, 2015

The Rain, a Poem by Martha O. Adams



  This Rain

Listen
This rain
Warmed before bonfires of stars
Rides on night’s black tides
Ghostly, flows slowly into day

Cycles in circles through time
Singing of morning’s shine
And the night’s cold shoulder

Old gray gown
Tailored for sleep
And the dreams of seeds

1.22.13

Friday, September 5, 2014

Ellen Schofield will be missed as Program Coordinator

We are all sorry that our Program Coordinator resigned, but happy that she accomplished so much in the year that she served.
From the beginning, Ellen Schofield reached out to our entire Netwest region, the nine counties of NC and the counties in bordering states. She had to get on a fast track to learn the ropes and meet the members. Being a person who is well organized herself, she organized and set up a website and streamlined our blog and other features. The membership page she created for us is the only online presence some of our members can claim.

In May, a short time after Ellen came on board, we held the first Netwest Conference since 2006 with a large attendance, good faculty and fellowship for writers from all over western NC and north Georgia. By using the funds accumulated in our Netwest treasury, Ellen set the registration fees well within reach of our members. By holding the conference in the beautiful Sylva Library, for free, the event drew members from the north end of the region, Henderson County, to the far south, Cherokee County in NC and Fannin, County in Georgia.

Karen Paul Holmes who facilitates Writers’ Night Out in Blairsville, GA said, “Ellen jumped right in with two feet and was dedicated to the job. She was always pleasant to work with on matters regarding Writers' Night Out and fully supported my choice of a new venue. She also knew the importance of good communication, both in general announcements to the full membership and also in quick responses to individual emails.”

Although Ellen was not well-known to many members when she accepted the PC position, she endeared herself to all she met and was open to helping writers in any way she could. Having served as Program Coordinator for two years, 2007, 2008, I know the job requires hours of time that the average member doesn't realize. Much of the job is done out of the public eye.

Bill Ramsey of Hendersonville said, “Writers can be contentious at times. Incidents of contention like the role of Netwest relative to the Network, the governor's naming of a new NC poet laureate and lesser skirmishes could have been real setbacks. Ellen is a peacemaker and some of that was needed during her term. We need more peacemakers.”

Along these same lines, Bob Grove said, “Ellen has had a positive influence on maintaining a complementary relationship between Netwest and the Ridgeline Literary Alliance. Her openness in dialog, warmth toward fellow writers, and follow-through with the challenges and responsibilities of her position set an example that will be hard to replace. Ellen will be missed.”

I asked Ellen what she enjoyed about being Program Coordinator for NCWN West and she said, “I appreciated the trust placed in me, and I particularly enjoyed traveling and meeting many of the members. Writers are always interesting people, and I made many good friends in my short tenure.”

When asked the reason for her resignation, Ellen responded, “My job description called for me to spend 10-12 hours per month for a compensation of $200, which seemed appropriate. However, I quickly realized that I could just barely cover the minimum responsibilities of the PC job in that amount of time. I came to believe that in order to be fully engaged, and effective, a Program Coordinator needs 10-12 hours per week - at a minimum. Unfortunately, my circumstances do not allow me to do the job as it is now without more compensation, and my work ethic does not allow me to do the minimum.”

Ellen said she hoped that until a new Program Coordinator, who has the same dedication as those who came before her who asked for little or no compensation, can be found, her hope is that the NetWest members will see themselves as members of an influential state-wide organization and follow the lead of its capable Executive Director, Ed Southern. 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Revised Website For NCWN

The North Carolina Writers' Network, of which NetWest is a chapter, has a newly revised website: www.ncwriters.org. This is a good time to familiarize yourself with it, because a guide for using it appears on the home page. And don't forget to bookmark it while you're there!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Four Writing Contests to Enter Now

Visit these sites and read the guidelines. Some are for North Carolina residents only and some are open to all. Get your work in now before the deadlines.  


1.       The Rose Post Creative Nonfiction Competition encourages the creation of lasting nonfiction work that is outside the realm of conventional journalism and has relevance to North Carolinians. Subjects may include traditional categories such as reviews, travel articles, profiles or interviews, place/history pieces, or culture criticism. The first-, second-, and third-place winners will receive $300, $200, and $100 respectively. The winning entry will be considered for publication by Southern Cultures magazine. The deadline is January 17.

2.       The Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize honors internationally celebrated North Carolina novelist, Thomas Wolfe. The winner receives $1,000 and possible publication in The Thomas Wolfe Review. The deadline is January 30.

3.       The Doris Betts Fiction Prize awards the first-prize winner $250. Up to ten finalists will be considered for publication in the North Carolina Literary Review. The deadline is February 15.

4.       The Randall Jarrell Poetry Competition awards the winner publication in storySouth and $200. This contest opens January 15 and run through March 1.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Imitation – the greatest form of flattery

Recently I listened to leaders of three organizations, all similar in their work, discuss their passion for what they do. All three have become successful by helping others. All three said they are not in competition and actually work together when they can.

This brought to mind my own work as teacher, mentor and writer. In recent months I have seen bitter conflict, ugly accusations and even have fallen prey to my own fears from those who imitate what we in NCWN West have accomplished in the past twenty plus years.

Many, many writing events have been held and sponsored by NCWN West including all day conferences from Lake Logan in Haywood County to Blairsville, Georgia. We have held three-hour workshops at the Senior Center in Hayesville, at church fellowship halls, and in the libraries. Netwest has sponsored visits from some of the best writers and poets, all who have added to the success of local writers.

Netwest sponsors four events every month in the Cherokee, Clay and Towns County area. Two counties, Henderson and Transylvania, have begun free open microphone events for writers, set up by Netwest Representatives and sponsored by NCWN West.

I think of the North Carolina Writers Network, our state literary agency, as the parent of all of us and NCWN West (Netwest) as the oldest child. Beginning with Marsha Warren, Nancy Simpson, Kathryn Byer and others, models were set up that served writers in the southwestern part of North Carolina and neighboring states.

Under the umbrella of the state, Netwest organized events for local poets and writers. Although this was not so long ago, it was a time before the Internet and instant messaging. Thank God for the telephone and newspapers.

In the past decade, communication changed and with these changes, our world as we knew it changed. Suddenly writers found other writers in their own towns, in their own neighborhoods, and even around the world. Writing groups began to form such as the Winston-Salem Writers. They began holding events within their region similar to what we had been doing in the mountain area. With the opportunity to go online, create a website, an organization could quickly be born. Some of them last, some don’t.

Because NCWN supports and serves all writers in North Carolina, it doesn’t deny any group and even promotes their events when asked. Small groups of like-minded writers have discovered each other through Facebook, Twitter, and other online systems.

Where do leaders of these groups get their ideas? Often from NCWN and from Netwest. Netwest has been called, in the past, the star of the Network. Ed Southern, Executive Director of NCWN, admits he liked the way Netwest appointed county representatives to reach writers throughout the region. He used that concept when he began appointing regional reps for the Network and found it to be an excellent way to serve members and non-members.

Now it seems we have other imitators setting up in the Netwest region. Again, we should be flattered. It shows we, our leaders in Netwest, have done a great job and continue to do good work in the far western mountains.

Recently a woman in another town told me she was thinking of copying my idea of holding writing classes in my home studio. She needs a chemically free environment as I do, so why shouldn't she?

Our first inclination when we hear of people usurping our ideas, our successful ventures, might be anger. “How could they?” We might resent the way it is done. But on more careful thought, we have to realize that through unity we can reach more people, do more good and be more successful ourselves.

Competition has never come between us in Netwest. As J.C. Walkup said in a recent post on our former website, this group of writers does not compete against each other. Instead we help each other to succeed. In my opinion, it is wrong to bash an organization, or try to undermine it, especially if you are a member. Far better to simply drop out or never join.

Thankfully, the reputation of inclusiveness of NCWN West precedes us throughout the region and the state. We are here to serve writers according to our mission statement. If you haven’t read it, please visit our website: www.ncwriters-west.org and learn all about us. If you live in a far away place, feel free to copy our concept and serve writers in your area.
Imitation is, indeed, the sincerest form of flattery. 

These opinions are those of Glenda C. Beall, former Program Coordinator for NCWN West. She holds writing classes at her home studio. Read more at www.glendacouncilbeall.blogspot.com 


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Are You Feeling Isolated? You Don't Have to

As writers in this modern world, we have many opportunities online to read and reach out for information we can use. Our Network site, www.ncwriters.org is filled with places we can visit with a simple click. Many writers have their websites and their blogs listed. You would be surprised at how much you can learn by reading what these writers post.

As writers in North Carolina it helps us to read about what is happening in our government that affects us and our parent organization, North Carolina Writers Network. We have an active and supportive Arts Council which needs our support as literary artists. 

As writers we often become self-absorbed and expect to receive much but don't give much back in return. I enjoy visiting the website of the NC Arts Council and the site of NCWN. I learn about other writers in our state and what is happening in the literary world.

Here in the mountains we sometimes feel isolated, but we don't have to be. We can reach out to writers across the state. I enjoyed a recent email exchange with our former Haywood County Rep, Al Manning who is on the Board of Trustees for NCWN. He lives in Pittsboro now and we discussed how the writing world has changed no matter where you live. He holds Writers Morning Out in his area to keep everyone connected. We all yearn for those good times we have when we like-minded people can gather and talk about writing. We learn from each other and how nice it is to help another writer if we get the opportunity.

I urge everyone to visit our writing sites and connect with a writer who lives in another part of the state. In the world of cyberspace today we don't have to ever feel isolated. We simply have to reach out.

LET NCWN ANNOUNCE YOUR GOOD NEWS ON THE NCWN WEBSITE


For Hat’s Off!, Book Buzz, member readings/events for the Member Readings e-blast and website calendar, workshops/classes/literary events for the Literary Calendar e-blast and website calendar, and submission opportunities (including job opportunities), e-mail:


For Book Buzz, be sure to include the following:

  • a paragraph description of your book
  • author bio
  • ISBN#, price, publisher
  • title and author
  • a jpg image of the jacket

When submitting workshops or literary events, please include all the above information, including the address of the venue.


Here’s a sample of an event in our Literary Calendar e-blast:







ASHE COUNTY


WEST JEFFERSON

NEW! JOSEPH BATHANTI CREATIVE WRITING WORKSHOP
When: Saturday, April 20, 2:30 pm
Where: Ashe County Public Library, 148 Library Dr.
Website: www.arlibrary.org
Contact: Karen Moll at kandr@skybest.com or 336-384-4255
Dr. Joseph Bathanti, professor of creative writing at Appalachian State University in Boone and North Carolina’s Poet Laureate, will conduct the workshop for adults and high school students interested in developing their writing skills. The workshop is part of a daylong celebration of events at the library.


For Hat’s Off!, it’s nice to include a link to the publication or contest website.



Friday, April 5, 2013

Blue Ridge Writers Conference in Blue Ridge Georgia - Friday Night Reception


Tonight I sat with Robert S. King and Carole Thompson at a book table upstairs in the Blue Ridge Mountain Arts Center in Blue Ridge, Georgia. The room was small, but besides our long table loaded with Robert's many poetry books, copies of Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, Now Might as Well be Then, my poetry chapbook and Carole’s new book, I think 8 other writers were displaying their novels.
Glenda Beall, Scott Owens (standing in back) Robert S. King

I found that several of them were new in the area. I used this opportunity to tell them about NCWN and NCWN West. I gave out brochures with the application form on them, but the phone number for NCWN on the brochure is incorrect. We need to update our literature.

I feel sure we will soon have three new members. One of them is an author who lives in Macon County NC. I had friended her on Facebook. (Friended- what a weird word) Her name is Linda Rue Quinn, author of The Cyrano Game and another book soon to be in bookstores. She is trying to get some writing events started in Macon County, and I hope she will soon be a member of NCWN West.

Linda Rue Quinn and her husband
Another lovely author who is new to our region, only been here a few weeks, is Sharon. She has a novel and I’ll tell more about it tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I am in bed trying to get rid of the terrible headache I developed from sitting near someone who wore perfume. Having MCS makes it very difficult to attend writing conferences.

I am also ready to get back to Southern Fried Lies by Susan Snowden. So far, I am really enjoying this novel.

Monday, March 4, 2013

What makes a good blog? Hope Clark has the answer,

“Every piece of content you write on a blog has to either solve
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 Born

It 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?




Saturday, September 22, 2012

Congratulations to Susan Snowden

Atlanta native, mountain writer, Susan Snowden's novel,  Southern Fried Lies is on shelves at your local bookstores.





Southern Fried Lies (a novel)

Author: Susan Snowden
Publisher: Archer Hill Publishing
ISBN: 978-0-9853301-0-1
266 pages; soft cover
$16.95

Available in bookstores and from online booksellers


Told in the clear, strong voice of Sarah Claiborne, a precocious teenager who reads Kafka and Camus, Southern Fried Lies is the story of a well-to-do Atlanta family in crisis.
The Claibornes appear picture-perfect: Edward, a successful architect; Catherine, active in the church and community; four model children. But life at “Tara” is not what it seems. Catherine’s sole focus has always been her oldest son, Ben; it is as if her other offspring and husband are invisible. When Ben suddenly moves away and refuses to communicate with his mother, Sarah becomes the target of Catherine’s wrath. Her father is too busy to help, and when Catherine’s behavior threatens the safety of all her children, Sarah takes on the task of “fixing” her.
The novel is set in Atlanta and New Orleans in the early 1960s.


About Susan Snowden:
An Atlanta native, Susan Snowden has lived in the Asheville area since 1995. Her work has appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies. A grant from the NC Arts Council
supported this project.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Summer Writing Residency ARE YOU INTERESTED?

>From July 23–25, the North Carolina Writers’ Network will offer the 2010 Squire Summer Writing Residency, a full weekend of intensive workshops at Peace College in downtown Raleigh. The Residency is an intimate, affordable alternative to large conferences, and a rare opportunity to create bonds within the writing community.

Sam Ragan Award-winner David Rigsbee, a prolific and erudite NC poet and professor who has been mentored by such luminaries as Carolyn Kizer and U.S. poet laureate Joseph Brodsky, will work with poetry registrants on the problems of “Passion and Restraint in the First-Person Poem,” using examples of persona, authenticity, form, and authority from contemporary poets. This workshop gives registrants the time and focus to pay attention to the details in their work and to stay concrete and clear with language.

Past attendees have said the following about the Residency:

"The entire group brought a sense of community to my writing that I hadn't had before."—Ivy Rutledge

"I found an open, welcoming community of people who immediately accept anyone who has a desire to write."—Karen Price

More information about the Squire Summer Writing Residency can be found at www.ncwriters.org or by calling 336-293-8844.



--
Virginia Freedman
Administrative Director, NC Writers' Network
PO Box 954, Carrboro, NC 27510
(919) 251-9140

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Ed Southern meets with writers in Sylva NC

Photos by Barry Beall


Ben Eller, author of Children of Sherlock Holmes and Gary Carden, Jackson County Representative for Netwest, meet with other writers at City Lights Books in Sylva to discuss how NCWN and Netwest can best serve members in the area.
On the right above, John Quinnett who writes haiku, lives in Bryson City, NC.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Meet Ed Southern in Netwest territory October 16


Anyone interested in writing is invited to meet Ed Southern, executive director of the North Carolina Writers' Network when he visits the Netwest area on Thursday, October 16. His first stop will be at City Lights bookstore at 2:00 PM in Sylva, NC.


Netwest county representatives and Glenda Beall, program coordinator for Netwest will also be there. Come out and learn what NCWN and Netwest can do for the literary community.




At 6:00 PM, Ed Southern will be at the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC to meet with writers in Cherokee, Clay, Graham, and north Georgia. This is the first time a director for the NCWN has made the trip over this far west to speak with members and others interested in the writing community. Ed Southern has said Netwest is a model for what he'd like to see all over the state.






Sunday, September 7, 2008

Top Ten Reasons I Have Enjoyed Being Program Coordinator for Netwest

1. I was able to bring onboard a corporate sponsor, United Community Bank, Inc..

2. I have been delighted to give something back to Netwest. We are steadily increasing our membership.

3. I’ve met and discussed Netwest with people throughout NC, and I’ve participated in exciting writing events and spoken to eager audiences of writers.

4. With the addition of Henderson County to our membership, I had the opportunity to meet the writers there, appoint a county representative and play a part in helping them build a writing community.

5. Working with our past and present leaders we revised a set of guidelines, drafted in 2003, which makes Netwest more independent without breaking from the North Carolina Writers’ Network. This was sorely needed.

6. One of the goals I had as Program Coordinator was to reach out to all the counties included in the membership of Netwest and let them know they are Netwest members just as much as members in Cherokee and Clay County.

7. For many years I had heard “we get nothing for our dues” from some members. I was able, in this past year, to give our members several low cost workshops by top writing instructors, to promote the work of deserving writers, to give computer classes to members at low or no cost, to start a Netwest blog and give our members’ work an outlet to the world.

8. I worked as a volunteer at the Spring Conference in Winston-Salem and found that NCWN needs volunteers and will offer an incentive to members who help out. I appreciate Ed Southern and Virginia Freedman giving me the chance to help with registration.

9. I’ve found working with Nicki Leone, President of NCWN, to be a joy and I admire her for her dedication to writers and to writing.

10. In my position as Program Coordinator, I now realize this is indeed a position which requires dedication and commitment. A PC must be visible, be active, and must respond to every phone call and email from members, possible members, writing instructors, from those who have published books, from those who want to publish books, from those who need the address of a fellow writer, from those who failed to check the calendar or just think it is easier to call the PC.

Part of the Program Coordinator’s job is to welcome new members, writers from out of town, make flyers, publicize and set up readings, contact and remind writers of the dates they read. Beg for volunteers to help when needed, work closely with all newspaper editors so they will happily print our news and calendar announcements, raise funds for special projects, and get to know our Indie book stores who are important to us as writers. And do all this with a smile. To many, the Program Coordinator is the face of Netwest.

10. The best part of being a Program Coordinator for Netwest is seeing our image, a mountain writer’s group, become respected and admired throughout the state of NC and beyond.
To see our members succeed and grow as writers, to see their work appreciated by others, to be their voices when they want to share good news, and know that I had some small part in making this happen, this is the best part.

Glenda Beall

Friday, July 18, 2008

Netwest Honors Nancy Simpson




A surprised Nancy Simpson was honored at the Celebration of Books and published authors and poets on Thursday evening, July 17. After a day at John C. Campbell Folk School where Nancy presented to the North Carolina Arts Council Board along with Kathryn Byer, she found herself acclaimed by award winning poets and recently published poets who began their writing in her classes at the Folk School, or in one of her many classes at Tri-County Community School. Glenda Barrett, whose chapbook, When the Sap Rises, was published by Finishing Line Press, brought a painting of mountains and Lake Chatuge that she had done for Nancy. Kathryn Byer, Poet Laureate of North Carolina and Debbie McGill, Literary Arts Director for the NC Arts Council spoke about when they first met Nancy. "I met Nancy when I came to read in Hayesville at the library when my daughter was a babe in my arms," Kay said. She went on to talk about her admiration of Nancy as a poet. She wanted us to realize that Nancy Simpson, while a wonderful teacher and leader, was first and foremost, a poet.


Debbie remembered how tenacious Nancy had been about Netwest and would not take "NO" for an answer when it came to getting what was needed for writers here in the rural mountains of North Carolina.


Brenda Kay Ledford, award winning poet, spoke about her first class with Nancy and how so many of us who were present Thursday evening, met in Nancy's classes. Glenda Barrett and Mary Ricketson expressed gratitude for Nancy's encouragement to those of us who call her our mentor. Mother and daughter, Dorothea Spiegel and Linda Smith, both met Nancy in one of her classes. Dorothea is likely one of the best poets in the area. She is in her 80's now and still writes excellent poems.


Netwest presented Nancy with a check to add to her computer fund. She is saving for a much-needed new Mac, and we want her to continue to write poetry and finish the historical novel she has begun.


Also, she will need it for her work on the proposed new Netwest anthology she will be editing.


There is no financial value we can put on the dedication and generosity Nancy devoted to NCWN West for thirteen years. Without her constant efforts to obtain funding, to maintain interest in all the counties represented, and keep mountain writers connected to each other and to Raleigh and Chapel Hill, we would not have continued as a program of NCWN.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Hendersonville Writers met with Ed Southern


At lunch, Ed and Glenda Beall met with Lana Hendershott, Susan Snowden, Nancy Purcell and Bob Greenwald to discuss writing in Henderson
County.

Ed Southern, Executive Director for NCWN, gave the Network a face for writers in Henderson, Transylvania, and Haywood Counties at a meeting at the Henderson County Library on June 16.
Everyone appreciated his answering the many questions members and non-members asked about NCWN and his vision for the future.
Some quotes from those attending are " This was a good meeting. Maybe we can have another, maybe quarterly."
It was an excellent way for local writers to meet each other and make plans to form groups, readings and other events in the area.
Nancy Purcell who has been a Netwest Rep in Transylvania country for a couple of years, was delighted to meet possible leaders for Netwest in Henderson County. Her hope is to hold a couple of big writing workshops each year in Brevard and in Hendersonville.
What do you folks in those towns think about that idea?
Just click on comments at the bottom of this post and let us know.

Photos by Barry Beall

Monday, June 16, 2008

Thank you, Hendersonville Writers. It was fun meeting many of the Netwest members I've been conversing with by email. Thanks also to Nancy Purcell from Brevard, JC Walkup and John Malone from Haywood county, Gary Carden from Jackson County and Bob Greenwald from Henderson county who shared with our guests.
Today was a good day, not only for me and for NCWN and Netwest, but I know the writers who came, connected with other local writers will find their lives enriched in the future.
As writers we all need community. We need to talk with other writers, share with other writers and bounce ideas off each other. I see the writers in Henderson county coming together in future writing events. Netwest will be there to help make this possible.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

As I think back on the NCWN Fall Conference, I think it was a mixture of learning the craft of writing and helping those who are ready to find agents, publishers for that book they want to get out there. Nancy Sales Cash said it seemed more of a conference for learning how to write, but to me, it seemed geared toward all serious writers who want to be published someday. I have noticed many writers get to a point where they have had something published, and then think they know all they need to know about writing. I never tire of learning and always glean something from a workshop with a good teacher.



In my newsletter from the Tennessee Mountain Writers Ms Penners asks what were you doing ten years ago with your writing. I had been a member of the NCWN for two years and I had won a first place in one poetry contest and third place in another. I had four poems in magazines and I was beside myself with joy. Before joining the NCWN I had only published one article in a newspaper and I had edited two newsletters. I had no one to share my writing and didn't know if I had written anything anyone else wanted to read. For me, having a community of writers changed my life. I decided not to settle for hiding my poems and stories away in my desk drawers and file cabinets anymore.

My first Fall Conference was in Asheville at the Grove Park Inn. I was in awe of all the accomplished writers, authors of books, and names I knew from book covers. But that event was such a special thing and a special time for me, that I knew I'd go back when I had another chance. I hope all our Netwest writers will go to big conferences when you have the opportunity. The writers I've met have been warm and giving people who share their difficulties and their successes. I think the NCWN is a terrific organization and Netwest is the most special part of it.