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

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Randy Mazie's poems published

Congrats to Randy Maxie. Two of his poems have been published in the latest edition of The MacGuffin, Fall 2020, Vol XXXVI, No. 3.

The poems are: The Buck Stops Here (a clerihew) and If Subtlety Is Worth Its Weight in Gold (a sonnet). This particular MacGuffin was dedicated to various traditional poetic formats.

Here at Netwest Writers, we are happy to see what our members are publishing. Send us your news about your writing. 

Thursday, December 31, 2020

KAREN LUKE JACKSON featured on Writers' Night Out

Join us Friday evening, 7:00 PM, January 8 online for Writer's Night Out. While you are 
home all comfy and warm, click on Zoom and meet Karen, a writer of prose and poetry. Her work has been widely published.

She did not let the pandemic slow her down. Karen has made appearances online all over the state of North Carolina. She read on Six Minute Stories a podcast with Randell Jones. 

Karen Luke Jackson is the author of Grit a poetry book that tells the story of her sister's life as Clancy the Clown. Two worlds coexist in GRIT, a poetry chapbook with photographs chronicling the life of Janis Luke Roberts and her alter ego, Clancey the Clown. From imaginary friends and childhood fantasies to fans grieving at her funeral, these poems explore how courage and imagination helped one woman overcome dyslexia and depression to become an award-winning performer.

An oral history tradition, contemplative practices, and clown escapades provide scaffolding for Karen Luke Jackson’s work. Whether crafting a poem, teaching a class, or serving as an Anam Cara, Karen searches for life-giving “role/soul” connections and helps others do the same. Stories, she says, provide an opening. They allow us to explore the core of our human experience and capture snippets of sacred mystery in everyday life.

Being a grandmother and living in a cottage adjoining a goat pasture in Western North Carolina are two of Karen’s greatest joys. When she’s not writing or companioning people on their spiritual journeys, she enjoys sitting on a porch nestled between pines and listening to bird song.

Read an award-winning poem by Karen Jackson here. https://www.karenlukejackson.com/a-triptych-on-the-first-anniversary

Join us on Zoom. All members of Netwest will receive an invitation. To read at Open Mic, email glendabeall@msn.com and you will be put on the list. Include a sentence about yourself or your writing for your introduction.

If you are not a member of NCWN, email me and introduce yourself if you want to attend WNO.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

It is Christmas Eve 2020.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to our readers.

Where ever you are and whoever you are with this holiday season, we wish you joy, peace, and good health.

As we all look forward to a new and better year, I am grateful that some of our members persevered even in a pandemic and published books, won contests, and entered contests in 2020. 

We appreciate the NCWN staff for all the opportunities offered online because we could not meet face-to-face.

Carroll Taylor and Karen Holmes have done a fine job of hosting Writers' Night Out and I am glad to be there to help. We will be online again in January with Karen Jackson as our special guest.

Until then, Write on!

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Live on Facebook, Bob Grove presents A Christmas Carol

For at least the last twenty years, Bob Grove has given a live presentation of Dickens' A Christmas Carol at John C. Campbell Folk School.

 It is a one-hour presentation done in costume and British accent. Bob says it is exhausting, but he loves doing it.

This year, for community health reasons, he will be doing it live on Facebook. You can watch it this coming Wednesday, December 16, at 5:00 p.m

On Facebook, in the little "Search facebook" bubble, type "John C. Campbell Folk School." 

Bob's live presentation is a treat you don't want to miss. 

Friday, December 11, 2020

Brenda Kay Ledford's Christmas Poem Published


Brenda Kay Ledford's poem, " Deck the Lodge,"

appeared in "West End Poet's Newsletter," (December, January, February, 2021 issue).


Thursday, December 3, 2020

Grammar Tips - Did you know?

 Robert Lee Brewer gives us some grammar tips: 


Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Editor of Writer's Digest, which includes editing Writer's MarketPoet's Market, and Guide to Literary Agents. He's the author of Solving the World's ProblemsSmash Poetry Journal, and The Complete Guide of Poetic Forms: 100+ Poetic Form Definitions and Examples for Poets

Bobbie Christmas in her book, Purge Your Prose of Problems says:

We say ice tea, but the correct word is iced tea. Jane sipped iced tea.

Today in movies and on television, people often use the wrong pronoun and in the wrong order. Bobbie Christmas explains this in Purge Your Prose of Problems.

Incorrect: Send the letter to George and I.  (This is often used wrong in media) 

Correct: Send the letter to George and me.  (Think - Send the letter to me.)

Incorrect: Us women believe in liberation.

Correct: We women believe in liberation.

Incorrect: Send the letter to me and George.

Correct: Send the letter to George and me.

Readers, do you have any writing tips you will share? Email, post on blog, or leave a comment. Help your fellow writers. 

Online events this week with Jackson rep Catherine Carter

Two online events this week will feature NCWN-West Jackson County representative Catherine Carter reading from her most recent collection, Larvae of the Nearest Stars (LSU Press, available through City Lights Bookstore in Sylva.)  

Tonight, December 3rd, at 7:00 p.m. EST, poet and editor Malaika King Albrecht and the journal Red-Headed Stepchild host a virtual book launch via Facebook and Zoom.  The event is listed on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/1083638252032460/ and the direct Zoom link is https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83281179470  The event is followed by an Open Mic.  

On Sunday, December 6, at 3:30 p.m. EST, poet and editor Rose McClarney and the North Carolina Arboretum host a reading of various authors from the collection A Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia (UGA Press), a new literary and natural history anthology. The book combines natural history information, original art, and poems commissioned from some of the writers who make up another Southern Appalachian wealth, as great, perhaps, as its biodiversity—its rich literary community. This special programfeatures readings by a diverse group of poets who composed original work for the field guide and conversation about how the natural world inspires and informs their craft.

Catherine Carter’s collections of poetry with LSU Press include The Memory of Gills and The Swamp Monster at Home, and Larvae of the Nearest Stars (2019).  Her poetry has won the North Carolina Literary Review’s James Applewhite Prize, the NC Literary and Historical Society’s Roanoke-Chowan Award, Jacar Press’ chapbook contest, and the inaugural Caldwell County Arts Council's WNC Poetry Contest, and has appeared in Best American Poetry 2009, Orion, Poetry, Ecotone, Tar River Poetry, and Ploughshares, among others.  She is a professor of English at Western Carolina University.  


Monday, November 30, 2020

Creator of the Netwest Program Concept - Marsha Warren

 Marsha Warren was executive director of the North Carolina Writer's Network when Nancy Simpson and Kathryn Byer began efforts to include the mountain counties in the literary community of North Carolina. Nancy Simpson gave the credit for our present NCWN-West Program to Marsha Warren.

After thirty years, Warren is retiring from heading the Paul Green Foundation where she moved on to after leaving the NCWN.

This is an excellent article about Marsha Warren:


We wish Marsha the very best in her retirement years and we thank her for helping to create NCWN-West all those years ago. 

To read more about the history of our program here in the mountains, click on https://www.netwestwriters.blogspot.com and select the Founding of NCWN West page. 

Friday, November 27, 2020

Writers' Night Out with guest, Joseph Bathanti

 December 11, Friday, 7:00 PM - Join Writers' Night Out on Zoom when our award-winning guest will be:

Joseph Bathanti , former Poet Laureate of North Carolina (2012-14) and recipient of the 2016 North Carolina Award for Literature. Bathanti lives in Vilas, North Carolina, with his wife, Joan, and two children. Bathanti and his wife met while both were working with the VISTA program.

·         He is the author of ten books of poetry, including Communion Partners; Anson County; The Feast of All Saints;

·         This Metal, nominated for the National Book Award, and winner of the Oscar Arnold Young Award;

·         Land of Amnesia;

·         Restoring Sacred Art, winner of the 2010 Roanoke Chowan Prize, awarded annually by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association for best book of poetry in a given year;

·         Sonnets of the Cross;

·         Concertina, winner of the 2014 Roanoke Chowan Prize;

·         The 13th Sunday after Pentecost, released by LSU Press in 2016.

·         His novel, East Liberty, won the 2001 Carolina Novel Award. His novel, Coventry, won the 2006 Novello Literary Award.

·         His book of stories, The High Heart, won the 2006 Spokane Prize.

·         They Changed the State: The Legacy of North Carolina’s Visiting Artists, 1971-1995, his book of nonfiction, was published in early 2007.

·         His more recent book of personal essays, Half of What I Say Is Meaningless, winner of the Will D. Campbell Award for Creative Nonfiction, is from Mercer University Press.

·         The novel, The Life of the World to Come, was released from University of South Carolina Press in late 2014.

A new volume of poems, Light at the Seam, is forthcoming in 2022 from LSU Press. Bathanti is the McFarlane Family Distinguished Professor of Interdisciplinary Education & Writer-in-Residence of Appalachian State University’s Watauga Residential College in Boone, NC.

He served as the 2016 Charles George VA Medical Center Writer-in-Residence in Asheville, NC, and is the co-founder of the Medical Center’s Creative Writing Program.

 NCWN -West Members will be mailed the Zoom Link for the meeting. For those who want to read at open mic, contact glendabeall@msn.com

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Joseph Bathanti will guest at Writers' Night Out

 If you are a poet, read poetry or listen to poetry, you don't want to miss Writers' Night Out on Friday, December 11. 7:00 PM. Carroll Taylor hosts former poet laureate of North Carolina, Joseph Bathanti. If you aren't familiar with Joseph, check out his website. 

We will post more in coming weeks.

Enter a contest in November - forty-four

 Attention all writers

Want to enter a contest? How about 44 contests in November? Prose, poetry, short story, memoir,  - 

some thing for all of us. Check them out at the link below.


Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Shout Out Atlanta features poet, Karen Paul Holmes


We are thrilled to see an interview with Karen Paul Holmes in an Atlanta publication, Shout Out Atlanta.

Karen came to success in writing poetry when she took a poetry class sponsored by NCWN-West. The late Nancy Simpson, co-founder of the mountain program, taught the all day workshop in Blairsville, GA. Many of our members live in North Georgia. Karen has a vacation home on Lake Chatuge where she spends much of her time. She attended our poetry critique meetings at Tri-County Community College where she honed her skills with published writers like Janice Moore and Nancy.

This is the link to this outstanding interview.


Leave a comment below, please. Support your fellow writers with you words.


Friday, November 6, 2020

Book by Glenda C. Beall review in Clay County Progress

 Marcia Hawley Barnes writes reviews for the Clay County Progress Newspaper. Recently she has been reading and writing books by local writers. 

I was delighted when she chose my poetry book, Now Might as Well be Then, published by Finishing Line Press for her October choice. Thanks to Marcia for this wonderful review.

I want to thank those who wrote such nice reviews on Finishing Line site for my poetry book. This book was available on Amazon.com but is no longer available there. The book can be ordered from Finishing Line Press or from me, Glenda Beall.

Thursday, November 5, 2020

The true story of a miracle in an African slum: Writers' Night November 13 via Zoom

Special Guest Paul Higdon
Hope and a Future:
Life, Survival, and Renewal on the Streets of an African Slum

Writers' Night Out

November 13, 7 pm
Reading & Discussion

Open Mic

Join us on Zoom
You do not need a Zoom account nor a Zoom app.
Netwest members, check your email for the Zoom link and login. 

You may wish to purchase a copy of this fascinating book ahead of time.
All proceeds go to charity. 

During Paul Higdon’s 36-year career in international finance, he had the honor of serving for six years as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of a children’s welfare operation in central Kenya. Based on that work, he was presented a Global Volunteer Award by Bank of America.

Since retiring from his banking career, he says the most rewarding endeavor has been composing his first bookHope and a Future: Life, Survival, and Renewal on the Streets of an African Slum, which chronicles the true story of a street boy, John Maina, who lived in the slums of Nairobi. Eventually, John and Higdon became so close that in an African sense, they are now father and son. In conjunction with the book’s publication, Higdon created a public charity, Little Boost Children’s Fund, whose mission is “Giving vulnerable kids a little boost.” All proceeds from the book go directly to the fund.
Higdon holds degrees in philosophy, politics, and economics from Cornell, Oxford, and Johns Hopkins, and he continues to enjoy a wide range of intellectual pursuits, especially early Christianity, and modern history.
His wife, Linda, is a classical pianist, an award-winning filmmaker, and now runs a tour company offering a unique “Women’s Journey to Kenya.” They live on the edge of the Kettle Moraine forest in the southern lakes region of Wisconsin.

Netwest members, check your email for the Zoom link and login. 

Friday, October 30, 2020

Betty Jamerson Reed Interview

 Congratulations to Betty Jamerson Reed. She was interviewed for  Nonfiction Authors Association. 

Betty Jamerson Reed unfolds the pioneer experiences of influential educational leaders, especially women and minorities. She leads readers on journeys into unnoticed Appalachian communities and shows how it takes a trailblazing visionary to create a village of successful learners.

Brenda Kay Ledford's Poem Published

 Brenda Kay Ledford's poem, "Fall Festival," appeared on "Your Daily Poem," October 25, 2020.


Wednesday, October 28, 2020




The crew of the Reba Jean, a B-17 bomber in the U.S. Eighth Army Air Corps, take to the skies above WWII Europe. Flying at an altitude of twenty-five thousand feet (twenty-five angels), the crew, including a pilot with an overly acute sense of responsibility for his men, a Jewish officer, and an anti-Semitic non-com, strive to achieve victory over the elite German Luftwaffe, and survive. The events that occur along the way make for a compelling story, culminating in a breathtaking ending sure to leave you on the edge of your seat.

Tom Hooker 

            Tom Hooker was born and raised in North Mississippi, receiving a degree from the University of Mississippi. He and his family have lived in Hendersonville, North Carolina since 1988. Tom has had short stories and poems published in a number of literary journals across the nation. He and Gary Ader co-authored a novel entitled, THE WAR NEVER ENDS, and he has also written a non-fiction work entitled, CALVARY’S CHILD: THE LIFE OF AMANDA CAROL HOOKER.


  • Paperback : $14.95
  • Kindle E-Book: $4.99
  • ISBN-10 : 1734675047
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1734675047
  • Product Dimensions : 6 x 0.77 x 9 inches
  • Publisher : Escarpment Press (October 18, 2020)
  • Language: : English


Thursday, October 22, 2020

Writers' Night Out for November and December


Writers' Night Out - 7:00 pm 2nd Friday of each month - Join us on Zoom

October – Scott Owens -  Host Glenda Beall

November - Paul Higdon - Host Karen Holmes

December – Joseph Bathanti – Host Carroll Taylor

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Congrats to Maren Mitchell

 Maren O. Mitchell has two poems, "Pale first cousin to red," and "Gray," appearing in The Antigonish Review, Volume 50, Numbers 201-02, Spring/Summer 2020. The editorial office of The Antigonish Review is located at St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

From "Untying the Knot" to Happily Ever After

 Good News for a Netwest County Rep and Poet

Hi, this is Karen Paul Holmes. Anyone who has read my poetry probably feels like they know me, and so Glenda Beall has asked me to post this. When we all get to meet in person again and you see me beaming, you'll know why. 

My first poetry collection, Untying the Knot, is like a memoir of experiencing and healing from the trauma of divorce after 32 years of marriage. At the end are poems of finding happiness with a new man. But that ended with his sudden death after six years together. Those of you who attended Writers' Night Out several years ago in Towns County, GA met that wonderful man. 

Now there's a very special person in my life, whom some of you had the pleasure of meeting at WNO last season. My new husband Mark Shaver is a lover of poetry, opera, and BBQ in the mountains, just like me! We married last Sunday in an intimate ceremony, having had to cancel our bigger wedding due to COVID. And yes, I am writing poems about him. I even read one at our wedding. I am now a big believer in late-life marriages. 

By the way, my second book, No Such Thing As Distance continues the story in poetry of my family and me, including Macedonian recipes. I was lucky enough to have poems from it read by Garrison Keillor on The Writer's Almanac and by former U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith on her insightful podcast, The Slowdown. Take a listen if you're so inclined! 

FYI: My addresses in the mountains and the city are the same, and I'm keeping my last name.