Words from a member

You and the entire membership of Netwest have been an inspiration to me in my writing life. The group is a welcoming & encouraging gathering of like-people. Thank you for all you've done for others. It does not go unnoticed.
Nancy Purcell

Sunday, August 2, 2020

We meet virtually in the fall for a writers' conference

Virtual Conference instead of Fall Writing Conference in Durham as planned by the NC Writers' Network.

I expect this conference to be a great experience for those of us who sign on to participate. 

I thoroughly enjoyed The Cabin Fever Conference in the spring, held on Zoom. I met the presenters and was able to ask questions and receive the recorded workshops for later perusal. 

Registration for this conference will be opened in September. Stay tuned to be sure you get included.


Thursday, July 30, 2020

Carol Crawford and Glenda Beall hold a conversation at Writers' Night Out August 14

NCWN-West sponsors Writers' Night Out Friday evening, August 14, 7:00 PM. 

Carol Crawford

We will meet on Zoom for this reading and conversation with a published writer, a poet and editor, Carol Childers Crawford. Our guest lives in Blue Ridge, Georgia where she runs her own business. 

More about Carol:
Carol Crawford is the owner of Carol Crawford Editing and author of The Habit of Mercy, Poems about Daughters and Mothers.

Carol has led workshops and taught creative writing for the John C. Campbell Folk School, the Dahlonega Literary Festival, The Red Clay Writers’ Conference, Writers Circle Around the Table, the North Carolina Writers’ Network, and the Carrollton Writers’ Club. She has been a volunteer with the Blue Ridge Writers’ Conference since it began more than twenty years ago.

Carol's essays and poetry have been published in the Southern Humanities Review, the Chattahoochee Review, and the Journal of Kentucky Studies among others. Originally from Texas, she holds a journalism and English degree from Baylor University. She loves to help people tell their stories.
She spends her free time doing needlepoint and badgering county commissioners about library funding.

Carol and Glenda will talk about editing and other things. Carol will read a couple of her personal essays. 

 Open microphone will follow for those who’d like to read their own poetry or prose with a time limit of three minutes.

Those wishing to participate in the open mic can sign up to read  by emailing Glenda Beall, glendabeall@msn.com.

Zoom invitations will be sent out again to NCWN-West members the week before the event. 
  For more information, please contact Karen Holmes at (404) 316-8466 or kpaulholmes@gmail.com or contact Glenda Beall.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Conversation with Carroll S. Taylor, novelist

We are pleased to have as our guest today, Carroll S. Taylor, novelist and author of a new picture book for children.

Carroll, thanks for taking time to answer some questions.  First, let me say how much I appreciate your being an active member of NCWN-West and for your assistance to me over the past couple of years.

Chinaberry Summer began in the summer of 1978. I was in grad school, and I enrolled in a fiction writing class with poet Bin Ramke as our instructor. We primarily wrote short stories, and I wrote a story entitled “Chinaberry Summer.” It was basically what is now Chapters 22 and 23  in my book. 

I retired (the first time) from teaching in 2004, and I felt it was time for me to stop grading essays and focus on my own writing. I thought about that lost story, and I began to reconstruct and rewrite it. I had never written a book before in my life. What was most important was to get my ideas on paper. Suddenly the characters started taking on lives of their own, and the story morphed into a book. Some may or may not understand this process, but I learned to get out of the way and let my characters write their story.

When it was time to publish Chinaberry Summer, I received many rejections. My novels are quirky Southern literature, and they don’t fit into every publisher’s desired genre. The narrator is Sissie Stevenson, an outspoken fifth grader who questions everything. 

By happenstance, or maybe by divine guidance, I discovered that a colleague at Columbus State University has a small publishing press in Auburn, AL, New Plains Press, and he agreed to read my manuscript. From there, the long process of publishing began.

When I finished my first book, I realized that my characters Sissie and Spud had much more to say, so my second book, Chinaberry Summer: On the Other Side, focuses on the other side of Sissie’s family and Sissie’s grandmother who has “the gift.”

I remember my first poem, written for my grandfather. I hadn’t started first grade yet and there was no such thing as kindergarten where I lived in Harris County, Georgia in the 1950s. First, second, and third grade at my school met in the same room with one teacher. The character in my book, Mrs. Clara Sue Martin, is my tribute to the remarkable teacher who taught me for three straight years. 
For my grandfather’s birthday,  I wanted to write a poem. I asked my mother, “How do you spell when? She misunderstood what I said and spelled it w-i-n-d. So the first line of my poem began “Wind you…” I still think back on that little poem over sixty-five years later and laugh!
I wrote some poetry and short stories when I was older. I remember my poor, patient ninth grade choral teacher. I admired her so much, and she read my poetry, which was, I remember, about loneliness, lost love, and teen angst. I would hand her my poems and leave the room, too shy to stay while she read them.
My students paid me back later when they asked me to read their poems. But the beauty of all that is trust. Poetry is highly visceral. A poet lays bare a portion of his or her soul for others to see. When a teenager hands a poem over to a teacher to read, that is a highly vulnerable moment in that teen’s life and a great compliment to the teacher.
Much of my writing went into the years I taught high school journalism, newspaper, and yearbook classes. I was busy teaching students how to write, and that work extended into the eight years I taught freshman essay writing classes part-time at Columbus State University.
3. I am a fan of character-driven stories and books. The characters in your Chinaberry series remind me of people I have known as I grew up in south Georgia. Do your fans relate to your books because of the characters?

I believe my fans relate to the characters and the time in which the books are set. Many of my older readers relate to a pleasant visit back to 1959-1961. I include things that people their age will remember, such as rotary phones, party lines, and TV programs like Sky King and Mighty Mouse. But I have had a really great response to the characters. Most readers figure I must be Sissie, but many of them have told me how much they love Spud. They ask me who he was in my life. They are astonished when I explain that Spud does not exist; he is fictional. He exists only in my book. Aunt Pearl is also fictional. I created Aunt Pearl as a composite of every annoying female relative or gossipy church lady I’ve known. I feel such joy when my readers believe all my characters are real. One of my friends was going through a terrible time with her husband’s illness. She grew up in South Alabama, and she said reading Chinaberry Summer felt peaceful.
I love stories, books, and television programs with strong ensemble characters. That’s the beauty of my novels. The kids form a tight circle to protect and support each other, and as readers will discover in my second novel, the circle begins to include kids that were socially marginalized or kids who came to realize that their bullying was wrong.

4. In your books, Sissie likes reptiles, something that likely surprises most readers because of the stereotypical girl who is scared to death of snakes. How does this theme play throughout both books?

I grew up fascinated by reptiles and amphibians. We lived in the country, and those critters were everywhere and were often a part of my life. My family always sat together around the table after supper and talked. My father and I loved snakes, so I would go get an encyclopedia and we would look for pictures and information about snakes all over the world. Consequently, I don’t have much patience with females (and males) who squeal when they see a snake or a lizard. 

For Chinaberry Summer, I decided to create a strong female character who would narrate my story, and at the same time, advocate for animals who have no voice. Of course, in Sissie’s youth, not much was taught in school about our ecosystem, our environment, and the preservation of wild animals who literally stand in the gap between humans and disaster. For example, without snakes, we would be overrun by vermin. In both books, Sissie comes to realize that most people need to be educated about reptiles and amphibians and their importance. She does not always say that someone killed a snake; she says they murdered the snake.

5. Besides entertaining the reader, your books also touch on values we hope children learn such as protecting a friend from a bully. What other things do you want children to glean from reading your books?

My books emphasize anti-bullying, respect for the creatures many people despise (snakes, spiders), and kindness to all creatures, both humans and critters. I want children to understand that, sadly, bullying will always be present in our society, whether it’s at the work place, in the military, on social media, in the family, sports teams, or any other social interactions in which one person decides he or she is superior to others and engages in any form of abuse. In effect, bullying is a malignancy. The key is for students to recognize bullying and respond to it appropriately. 

No child should be emotionally damaged or ever commit suicide because of a bully. In all three of my books, including my children’s book, I stress the importance of having a diverse group of friends. I want students to be aware if classmates are being bullied. It is important for Sissie to ask questions and speak up. When I was growing up, nice little Southern girls often faded into the wallpaper. After all, what will people think?

I also emphasize generational storytelling. My grandfather often sat with me in the porch swing and passed down family stories. My other grandfather died when I was five, but I remember many things he taught my sister and me in that brief time. Both of my grandmothers lived to be older and passed down a huge amount of stories from their lifetimes. 

My maternal aunt was one of our family historians. I often called her to help me with farm questions. She grew up on my grandparents’ farm which they had received as part of FDR’s “New Deal,” so she helped me verify those facts in my book. Sadly, she died as the result of a car accident at age 68. I dedicated my book to her. She never knew I finished it. I will forever be grateful for the time all of them spent telling me family stories. I hope my Chinaberry Summer books will not only encourage older readers to pass down their stories to their families but will also encourage young readers to learn about their family history.

6. In what way do you think your years of teaching children influence  your writing life?
I taught a variety of courses during my teaching career. Much of the time, besides teaching French, I taught English and Journalism. I also taught English as a Second Language. One of my favorite courses was Creative Writing. My students were excited to learn about different forms of poetry. They learned to write short stories. Some of them found refuge in writing. Throughout my teaching career, I learned along with my students. I taught them a lot, but they taught me as well.

Over the years, whether teaching in high school or college, I witnessed a lot of students who had emotional scars. I tried to provide them essay topics for them to express issues they were trying to deal with at home. In my Chinaberry Summer books, I dealt with bullying; but parents and students need to realize that bullies are not just playground ruffians. Sometimes family members and teachers bully students. In Feannag the Crow I stressed socialization skills. Simon the lizard teaches Feannag that he should always have friends. That idea also goes back to the idea of an ensemble of characters in my novels and the support friends give each other.

7. You have a grown son and a grandchild now. Does that influence what you write and publish?
When my son was growing up, we always had books in the house. He enjoys reading and writing, which comes in handy for his sermons.  I love it when he reads my poems and gives me feedback. We discuss our writing ideas. I hope someday my three-year-old granddaughter will read my Chinaberry Summer series, but Feannag the Crow is a book she can enjoy now when her parents read it to her. I dedicated the book to her. It is a living legacy of myself given to her. The message in Feannag’s story is for every child who reads it, but I hope she will hear my voice when she reads the words. Because of the pandemic, I had to mail her copy to Washington State instead of delivering it in person. On FaceTime, I watched her open the envelope and find the book. The first thing she saw was my picture. She was so excited. Then she turned the book over and began pointing to the birds and telling me what color they are. I plan to write at least two other Feannag books for her to enjoy.

8. The picture book, Feannag the Crow is a delightful story with fabulous illustrations. Tell us about that book and how it came to be written.
I can honestly say that Feannag the Crow was a result of serendipity. I didn’t set out to write a children’s book. In fact, this is my first one. I think Feannag, who is a pushy little bird, wormed his way onto my list of writing ideas. He wanted to be born; and once he hatched, he bypassed the usual route of fledglings and their preparation for flight. Feannag was born ready.
Two factors influenced writing my book. First, I have always loved crows. They are social, loud, and comical at times, but they are also highly intelligent. Every morning at my house, I feed roasted peanuts to a few crows, whoever decides to fly in for breakfast. I call them with my human Caw! and they show up from the trees. The second factor was our trip to Scotland last year. My husband and I loved the Highlands and the Scottish people.

One evening I was trying to decide what to write about next. Feannag and Scotland suddenly came together. The book also gave me the opportunity to spotlight some of my favorites—a lizard, a turtle, and a snake. Feannag is Scottish-Gaelic for crow. I have a picture of a thistle in the book, which is a nod to Scotland.

Amy Ammons Garza, who did the book’s layout and editing, suggested that I do a series preparing children for the process of socialization. I liked her suggestion, and I already have ideas for two more Feannag books I hope to write. I cannot say enough about Amy’s patience and skill. Doreyl Ammons Cain, her sister, is an incredible illustrator with a tireless work ethic. I was blessed to find them.

9. You have a diverse talent for writing and you have written stage plays. Tell us about that part of your writing life and do you plan to pursue that genre.
Sometimes my writing is for publication, and sometimes writing is for the pure pleasure of writing to see if I can actually do that genre. My screenplay was recently professionally edited. All I need to do is make myself sit down, sort through the corrections and suggestions, and make those changes.  A screenplay needs to be character driven with less description. It must fit a specific format. Then finding a market is difficult.

I attended a screenplay writing seminar years ago. The instructor told us that he could not guarantee that our screenplays would be successful. But, he added, he could give us a 100% guarantee of failure if we don’t write the screenplay. That advice, of course, could apply to any of our writing.

10. Feannag came out just as the pandemic exploded all over the country. At this time you can’t hold book signings or give readings to the public in book stores or public places. How are you finding ways to promote your new book while staying home?
Sales are slow at the moment. I have mailed out quite a few copies between here and the West Coast. I am so thankful for social media and for my publisher’s website for sales. Amy designed business cards with Feannag’s picture. She also designed mail order pamphlets that I can distribute. In addition, she designed Feannag labels for my mailing envelopes so every time I mail a book, I am also advertising it. I am contacting area bookstores for consignment sales. School contacts are dicey at the moment. I anticipate an uptick in sales when I am at last able to hold an official book launching party and do readings for area bookstores and festivals. The book really is lovely. It’s a First Edition, and all artwork is original pastels created by Doreyl Ammons Cain, who founded the Appalachian Mural Trail with her husband Jerry.

11. As you know I teach aspiring writers. What advice can you give fiction writers who want to become published writers one day?

Writing is one of the hardest things you will ever do, not because of the process or writer’s block, but because it’s often difficult to make yourself sit down and write. It takes discipline. So many distractions pull us in different directions. I write on my computer, so it’s easy to do a quick research on a word or idea and suddenly find myself scrolling on Facebook.

Writing is a solitary occupation. That’s a good and a bad thing. Sometimes you will feel all alone and wonder why you’re writing. You may become filled with self-doubt. But you have to push through those moments. The good thing is that I need to have some solitary time to write. Even that can be challenging. Often the TV is going and my cat feels compelled to startle me by jumping up on my desk and striding across the keyboard wreaking havoc on the words I just typed. So writers need a designated writing area where they can work with as little distraction as possible.

You also need to discover your best time for writing. For some writers, it’s early morning or after everyone has left the house or gone to bed. For me, it’s very late at night. I’m often writing between 2:00-3:00 a.m. I also know a few writer friends who are up that late, too. I wrote a major portion of a screenplay during lunch break every day.

Keep one special folder. Name it whatever you like. One of the things I do when I’m writing a book, and I know there will be a sequel, is to keep notes in a computer folder for future books. I never destroy unused lines or ideas. I cut and paste them to that ONE folder so that I may be working on two manuscripts at the same time. I do the same when I’m writing short stories or poems. Cut, paste, and save. That snippet you save may not be needed now, but it may be quite useful later.
Try not to edit as you write. First, write down the details. You don’t want to lose those! When ideas come to you through the day or night, jot them down and keep them together. Trust me, you won’t remember them later. They will evaporate. When I write my Chinaberry Summer series (now on book 3), I prefer to work from an outline. I design my chapters and go from there. There is plenty of time for smooth editing later in the process. If you do heavy editing at the beginning, not only will you stifle your flow of ideas, but you will also cause yourself to become discouraged. Premature editing, in my opinion, is when a lot of writers give up.
My other piece of advice is this: Unless you’re writing historical fiction and you have to leave this century and do scads of research, set your story where you feel comfortable. A fiction piece does not have to be in L.A. or New York. There’s nothing wrong with Georgia or North Carolina. If you know those places well, set your story there if it fits. Don’t feel compelled to pick an exotic location for your setting unless you plan to visit there or do lots of research.

 Please feel free to tell us anything about yourself, or your books that I have not asked.
As I stated earlier, I grew up in a rural area of west Georgia in the 50s and 60s. Girls weren’t steered toward science and math. We were required to take Home Ec. There was no art class. There was no avenue to share poetry. Preconceived notions dominated any artistic endeavors. Football was king. I managed to buck the system a bit by taking Latin and French. I didn’t want to be pigeon-holed by someone else’s expectations.
Math was not my forte in high school. I know now that I was afraid of it.  Afraid of failure. I was expected to be an A student. So for a big bucket list item, as soon as I completed my last semester teaching at CSU in 2014, I enrolled as a student in the CSU Study Abroad program held in Oxford, UK, each summer. My course was “The History of Mathematics.”  I hired a tutor, worked extremely hard on my assignments, and enjoyed the experience of a lifetime. I proved to myself that I could be a successful math student. At 65 years of age, I was one of the college kids and much older than my professor.
And so it is with writing. What often holds many aspiring writers back is their fear of failure. The idea that their writing, a piece of their souls, is laid bare for readers to see and critique. What if nobody likes my work? What if I’m criticized? So what!
On the day of my Chinaberry Summer book launch at CSU’s Oxbow Meadows Environmental Learning Center, I needed to run by the bank and get some change for book purchases. I was filled with self-doubt. Who am I to think I am an author? Who will be interested in what I have to say? The signing was a planned affair, guests were coming, and I had reserved the facility for much of the day.
I was at that proverbial moment when I was ready for God to send me a sign. The bank was in the middle of a busy shopping area and apartments. I looked out across a manicured lawn, and there was a huge turtle strolling across the grass near a small stream. That was my sign. That was when I realized the truth. Through my writing, I was speaking for all the reptiles and amphibians that don’t have a voice. They are critters who have no way to protect themselves from encroaching development and thoughtless cruelty. I had my answer.
Writing a book was also one of my bucket list items. I loved launching my book at Oxbow Meadows. I had a fantastic day reading excerpts of my book for the audience and signing books while surrounded by live snakes, turtles, and baby alligators in their glass-enclosed habitat displays.
I felt I was surrounded by friends, not just the two-legged kind.  I held numerous signing events. One that I will always remember was the reading I held in the childhood home of CarsonMcCullers  in Columbus, Georgia.
But all that was not enough. I knew there was much more to the story of Sissie and Spud. I had caught the writing bug.
Thank you so much, Carroll. We appreciate your taking time to be with us today. And thanks for your inspiring words about writing.

Thank you, Glenda, for interviewing me. I appreciate all the work you do for North Carolina Writers’ Network-West and your faithful online presence as well.  You continue to be a mentor and role model for me. I moved here from an area that does not provide the level of camaraderie and encouragement I have found here, where writers and poets support one another. I’m so happy I found NCWN-West at the Festival on the Square in Hayesville one hot and humid Sunday afternoon. Serendipity!

Monday, July 6, 2020

Congratulations to Brenda Kay Ledford


Brenda Kay Ledford won two gold medals in the Clay County Cherokee Senior Games Silver Arts Literary contest for 2020. She received first place for her essay "Backyard Blessings" and short story, "Shaking Loose."

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Congratulations to Maren O. Mitchell

Maren O. Mitchell has poems published in 3 online journals:

The Orchards Poetry Journal – “My Friend Janice Said She Wouldn’t Write a Poem the Prison Across the Meadows Within View of Her House, but Suggested I Could” and “Most visible,”

Still: The Journal, Summer issue – “V,” “Vanishing Act” and “Tree Talk”

The Lake (UK), July issue – “All the way home”

Maren O. Mitchell’s poems appear in San Pedro River Review, The MacGuffin, The Cortland Review, Hotel Amerika, Poetry East, The Comstock Review, Tar River Poetry, The Pedestal Magazine, Appalachian Heritage, Slant, Still: The Journal, Chiron Review, The South Carolina Review, Southern Humanities Review, Appalachian Journal and elsewhere. Two poems have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She lives with her husband in the mountains of Georgia.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Check out Book Buzz for Feannag the Crow by Carroll Taylor


Congratulations to Carrol S. Taylor. Her new picture book was featured this week on Book-Buzz on www.ncwriters.org .

Carroll S. Taylor, author of Feannag
Meet Carroll at Writers' Night Out, July 10 on Zoom where she will be featured guest.

Monday, June 29, 2020

No NCWN sponsored in-person meetings anytime soon

We received notice from Ed Southern, Executive Director of the North Carolina Writer's Network that we will not hold any in-person meetings sponsored by NCWN and that includes NCWN-West in the foreseeable future.
Ed Southern, Executive Director of NCWN

This is from his email:
"With North Carolina stuck in Phase 2 of our "re-opening," and our neighboring states having re-opened to greater degrees, we've heard that some of you have questions about when you can start hosting monthly, in-person events again.

Again, the short answer is, "You can't . . . at least not in the NCWN's name. Not now, and not anytime soon."

At this point, I don't feel comfortable enough even to set guidelines on when you can think about re-starting in-person events. COVID-19 diagnoses continue to rise, and many of our members are part of particularly vulnerable populations. The NC Writers' Network will not take part in exposing anyone to unnecessary risk.

We recognize that those of you in smaller towns and rural areas face different circumstances and dangers than those in large cities. As soon as we feel we can formulate safe, responsible, and comprehensive guidelines for in-person events, we will let you know.
If you have questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to let us know."

Some events are still meeting but on Zoom. Bob Grove said the prose group that usually meets in Murphy is meeting same time and date but online. 
Writers Night Out set to meet at the Ridges Resort in Hiawassee, GA will continue this month with guest Carroll S. Taylor. 

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Writers' Night Out is Zooming on July 10

We are delighted to have Carroll S. Taylor, award-winning poet and author of three books, as our guest for Writers' Night Out Friday, July 10 at 7:00 PM.

 We will once again hold a Zoom event. I will send out the invitation to our members on July 5 or 6.
The event will include an Open Mic session. 

Monday, June 22, 2020

Don't miss the opportunity to apply for this online conference.


Community, but not Communicable

Fiction session is closed, but there is room in Poetry and Creative Nonfiction. The price is right. Very reasonable cost for members of NCWN and NCWN-West, with discounts for seniors and for students. 

If you have not taken classes on Zoom, I think you will enjoy it. I have taught on Zoom and took classes at the Cabin Fever Conference earlier this year. I really like being able to attend a workshop by a professional writer, to ask questions and hear comments from other participants while sitting in my own home.

This is an excellent method for older folks to participate without having to brave the outside world right now. 

See the link above to register, but the deadline for registration is June 29, so don't wait. Do it now.
You don't have to be a member to register, but if you want to join at the time you register, you will get a nice discount. 

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Congratulations to Randy Mazie

NCWN-West member, Randy Mazie, poet
Randy Mazie’s poem A Poet's a French Pirate, has been published in the DASH Literary Journal (13th Edition 2020). It is a limited-edition anthology published by The California State University, Fullerton, Department of English, Comparative Literature, and Linguistics. For more information, visit: http://english.fullerton.edu/publications/dash.aspx.

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Glenda Beall teaches class for ICL in July

Glenda Beall will teach an online Zoom writing class for the Institute of Continuing Learning beginning Monday, July 13, 1:30 - 3:30 and ending Monday August 3rd. It will be a two hour class running for four weeks.
Fee for this class is only $10.00 with membership.

Glenda recently taught a Zoom class with four students. It was a new experience for everyone.

This is what one student said about the class:

Despite the challenges of ZOOM, my recent Creative Writing class with Glenda Beall proved valuable.
Motivation, learning new things and excellent peer review far outweighed the perceived difficulties of distance learning. Hopefully, Zoom classes won’t be the new norm, but if so, know that Glenda and the students handled the shortcomings well. Class notes were emailed and students shared work and suggestions via email and Zoom.
I couldn’t ask for a better outcome despite my technical aversions. M.C. Brooks


Description: How do we begin to write about our lives? Can we use dialogue, stories passed down from parents, and do we have to prove they are true? In today’s world where family members often live long distances from each other, it is difficult to share the interesting lives we have lived. There seems to be no time to sit on the porch and talk about the past. But we can still share our life experiences with our children, grandchildren, and future generations by writing them now. In this class we will learn how to make our stories entertaining as well as enlightening. We will also learn by receiving feedback from our classmates.

ICL is taking registration. Visit the website here. Membership is required. Number of students is limited.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Carroll S. Taylor has good news

Carroll  S. Taylor  received exciting news this week. Two of her poems, "Irisesand "Circling Magic," will be published in the upcoming edition of The Georgia Poetry Society's annual anthology, The Reach of Song. The anthology will be published this year.

Carroll is an active member of NCWN-West. She is volunteer assistant to the program coordinator. We will publish an interview with Carroll soon. She is author of two children's books, Chinaberry Summer and Chinaberry Summer, on the Other Side.  

Friday, June 5, 2020

Online Writing Classes with some top writers

A few weeks ago, I received this notice from The Writers' Workshop in Asheville, NC. Now we can all benefit from these classes because
they are online. You don't have to drive to Asheville or stay overnight.

387 Beaucatcher Road
Asheville, NC 28805


JUNE 27:  FICTION CLASS with Karen Ackerson
The class will learn the essentials of a good story or novel. Character and conflict are key elements that will be discussed, including creating a sense of place, dialogue, and enhancing one's writing style. Students may bring up to five pages to the class for review. Ackerson has taught fiction writing for over 25 years. As Senior Editor at The Renbourne Editorial Agency, she has edited over 500 novels and memoirs.

JULY 11:  WRITE YOUR LIFE with Richard Krawiec
        In this supportive writing-intensive class, participants will learn how to draw on the "material" of their lives to write and revise memoirs, stories, or plays. Elements covered include time compression and expansion, theme, recognizing your purpose, and developing your piece professionally. 
Krawiec is the founder of Jacar Press, and the author of numerous books such as "Breakdown: A Father's Story", "Faith in What?", and "Time Sharing". His work is published in numerous journals including Shenandoah, Florida Review, and N.C. Literary Review.

JULY 25:  SCREENWRITING WORKSHOP with Nathan Ross Freeman
 The class will learn all aspects of writing the screenplay, including formatting, characterization, sequence structures, and how to adapt any genre to a screenplay. Freeman’s credits include the feature films Gem and Mr. Bones, the official selection of major film festivals; and Authoring Action, awarded 2010 Best Documentary in the U.K.  He has taught at UNC-C and Salem College.

Writers of fiction and non-fiction books and stories will learn how to revise and polish their works before submitting to an agent or publisher. Techniques will be taught on how to grab the reader's interest by eliminating unnecessary details, building tension, and fine-tuning dialogue and descriptions. Participants may bring five pages (double-spaced) to the class for discussion. Ackerson is Senior Editor at The Renbourne Editorial Agency (www.renbourne.com), and has edited hundreds of novels, memoirs and creative non-fiction stories. 

Karen Ackerson, Exec. Director
The Writers' Workshop
387 Beaucatcher Rd.
Asheville, NC 28805


Thursday, June 4, 2020

What a great deal from Press 53

Select any five Press 53 paperback books and save big!
Bundle and Save: Choose any five paperback books for $53
Browse our website and select five different paperback books of your choice
Choose five short fiction titles, or five poetry titles, or mix them up. It’s your choice! Any five Press 53 paperback books for $53!
Thank you for your support of Press 53 and our authors.