Showing posts with label Nancy Purcell. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nancy Purcell. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Nancy Purcell's poem Ins and Outs appearing on Napalm and Novocain Blog

Nancy Purcell's poem Ins and Outs, appears as the January 14, 2015 entry on A.J. Huffman's Napalm and Novocain Blog. Please read the poem at:

Nancy Purcell served as a North Carolina Writers Network/Elizabeth Squire Daniels Writer-in-Residence at Peace College, Raleigh, NC, teaches Creative Writing in the Brevard College Community Education program, and mentors aspiring writers. She was the County Representative for the NC Writers' Network-West for 6 years.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Be Persistent say John Jakes and Nancy Purcell

“Be persistent. Editors change; tastes change; editorial markets change.  Too many beginning writers give up too easily.”  — John Jakes, Author of the North and South Trilogy

Do you get a rejection and mark that poem or story off your list to submit? Do you have spurts when you send out work and then submit nothing for months? 

One of our NCWN-West members, Nancy Purcell, submitted a short story over 100 times before it was accepted. Nancy is an excellent writer, but that is not the only thing required to have your work accepted in magazines and journals. Nancy is persistent also. She had to find the right editor, the one who liked her story or needed her story for their next issue. This is what Nancy told me:

The story, "The Unwrinkled Heart," is online now at Valparaiso Fiction Review. It's the Winter 2015 edition. They only publish 6 stories a season. 

It was invigorating to receive the editor's letter saying, "I pray you have not accepted any other Review for this work. I love your writing and this is a great story. By the way, it's a pleasure to read a manuscript that is clean." 

Nancy has published 26 pieces of short fiction and is working on a collection of short stories she hopes to publish in the coming year. 

Some gifted poets give up writing or submitting when they receive a few rejections. It often takes hours of our time to search for markets and submit to publications. That is all part of being a writer. As someone said to me after our panel discussion at the Moss Library recently, "I understand now. Writing and publishing is hard work." Yes, it is and only those who are determined and who grow a thick skin will continue to submit. 

If you are an experienced writer, what is your advice to new or beginning writers and poets who want to see their work published? Tell us in our comments section.

Nancy Purcell served as a North Carolina Writers Network/Elizabeth Squire Daniels Writer-in-Residence, Peace College, Raleigh, NC, teaches Creative Writing in the Brevard College Community Education program, and Quick Coaches aspiring writers. Studied Creative Writing at the Iowa Summer Program. Seven years as County Representative for the NCWN-West Writers. Presently serves as the Prose Judge for the Board of the Carl Sandburg Home Writer-in-Residence Program,
Publications: 26 Short Stories to include: RiverSedge, The MacGuffin, Pangolin Papers, Troika, LongStoryShort, The Square Table, DiverseVoicesQuarterly, The Final Draft and RCVRY among others.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Valparaiso Fiction Review accepts story by Nancy Purcell

Image result for Nancy Purcell writerOne of my dear friends and a member of Netwest for many years, is Nancy Purcell. She has been a devoted representative for Transylvania County throughout those years.

Today I am happy that one of her stories was accepted by Valparaiso Fiction Review. 

Nancy said she had submitted this story many, many times to other magazines, but she didn't give up. She believed in her story, The Unwrinkled Heart. It will be in their Winter 2015 issue. "I loved this story and put my heart in it and was determined for it to see print! There's a saying, It takes a lot of eyes before the right ones see your work." 

Guidelines for Valparaiso Fiction Review
Submissions to VFR should be original, unpublished fiction. Submissions should range from 1,000 to 9,000 words with possible exceptions. Please use 12 point font, double-space, and .doc, .docx, or .rtf formats. Please include name and email on the first page of each submission.

Please no novels, poetry (see VPR), or children's fiction unless otherwise noted. Excerpts from novels are acceptable only if selected piece operates as a stand-alone story.

Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but the author should notify VFR immediately should a submitted piece be accepted elsewhere. Response time for each submission is 3-4 months and will be sent electronically. Only stories submitted through VFR Submissions page will be considered. Please, no paper submissions.

There is no submission deadline. Submissions are considered on a rolling basis.

When VFR accepts a piece of fiction for publication, we are purchasing first-serial publication rights.

To submit fiction, one must setup a user account via Submissions.

For any additional questions, please contact one of the VFR editors, at

For more information on submitting poetry, please visit our sister publication – Valparaiso Poetry

Congratulations to Nancy who lives in BrevardShe is a teacher and fiction writer with a number of publications under her belt. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Kind of a Hurricane Press accepts Poem by Nancy Purcell

Nancy Purcell, writer and former Netwest Rep from Transylvania County in North Carolina sent her news.

I have always dabbled in Poetry but worked mainly on the Short Story. I recently submitted a poem to Kind of a Hurricane Press,, and my poem, Hard Frost, was accepted. It will be included the their anthology, Life is a Roller Coaster.

Sometimes you just get brave and send out work and get an acceptance! They're hard to come by but worth the effort.

Nancy is right. They won't be published if no one sees them. Congratulations to Nancy. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Nancy Purcell's poem accepted for Anthology

Kudos to Nancy Purcell, former Transylvania County Representative for Netwest. Her poem, Hard Frost was accepted for inclusion in the anthology, Life is a Roller Coaster from Kind of a Hurricane Press.

Nancy’s prose has been published in various print media, and she teaches Creative Writing  at Brevard College in their Creekside program for adults. She also facilitates a writing group made up of her students.

A Southern fiction writer, Nancy has learned to tap into readers’ emotions and keep them riveted right up to the final sentence. As a student of relationships, she explores family dynamics that include romance, old age, deceit, even murder. She is also a prose judge for the Carl Sandburg Home Writer-in-Residence program at Flat Rock, NorthCarolina.

Congratulations, Nancy. We look forward to seeing more of your poetry. Visit Nancy online here.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Big Thank You to Our Echoes Distributors

Lana Hendershott
I want to thank some members of Netwest who have been exemplary volunteers the past year. Our representatives in each county acted as distributors and marketers for Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, the anthology we published in 2010. They called on bookshops and gift shops throughout western North Carolina, South Carolina and North Georgia. They manned tables and signed books at festivals. We could not have already sold nearly 1000 books without the hard work and diligent record-keeping of these people. Each Representative originally received 100 books delivered to their homes.
Nancy Purcell from Brevard, NC sold out of her first shipment quickly and requested more books. She and the others also found each contributor in their county and gave them a promised free book. We sent out a list of people who donated money to Netwest for the printing of the book. Each of them received a free book.

Lana Hendershott is our Netwest Rep in Henderson County. She has done a remarkable job keeping book stores stocked and selling to members and others who wanted a copy of Echoes. If you live in Henderson County contact Lana if you know of any place that would like to carry Echoes Across the Blue Ridge.

Nancy Purcell
JC Walkup of Haywood County did a terrific job of selling Echoes. She brought copies to meetings of Mountain Writers, she sold books at the Farmers Market, and she keeps Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville supplied. She has also sold books in Asheville and filled orders for Malaprop’s.

These three Netwest members held readings in libraries, put articles in newspapers and did all they could possibly do to get our book out there. And they were successful. We can't thank them enough for giving of their time and making the extra effort required to make Echoes Across the Blue Ridge a big seller this past year.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Nancy Purcell is busy in Brevard, NC

We always love to hear what is happening in the Netwest area. Nancy Purcell, NCWN West Representative for Transylvania County, sent an update on her activities.

Instead of teaching an adult education program at Brevard College this semester, I've been volunteering at Brevard Middle School, working with 7th & 8th graders who are "enrichment" students. The 20 student class is an Art/Writing group, working on Life Books. I introduced them to an internet site,, where you paste a story you've written and saved in your documents into the sites "box" and hit GO. The words come out jumbled by size....largest being the words you used most frequently. Poets & Writers touted this site for writers, showing the writer which words they most frequently used in their work. For instance, if you have lots of similes in a story, the word "like" would come up larger than other words.

 What made it so much fun for the class members was doing this with the various fonts and COLOR. The site provides color selections and font selections. As a writer of fiction or non-fiction, it's a quick way to check your chapters or stories for word over-use.

It has been wonderful to see the work these young people produce and to learn they've been writing and drawing "forever", as one student told me. She has written 12 short books and writes every night. She is one among many who want to further their education in the Arts and have the full support of their parents. They speak to me of visiting colleges and selected careers, family discussions of their futures and the need to learn. They have lifted me through their work and their attitudes. Our group is considering a writing competition for 8th graders, offering 1st, 2nd & 3rd place certificate recognition and monetary prizes. This must be approved by the school and submission rules are yet to be written. Transylvania writers are at work!

Thanks, Nancy. The gift of your talents will be long-lasting with these children. Most of us have had mentors who helped us get where we are today with our writing successes. The most generous writers seem to be the most successful.

Nancy has published numerous short stories and essays in magazines and anthologies. She leads a writing group, Wordsmiths, and teaches at Brevard College.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


From left: Betsy Craig; Peggy Bresnahan; Janet Sloane Benway; Nancy Purcell, Transylvania Rep for Netwest;Alexandra Burroughs;
Celia Miles, editor, seated.

These writers signed the anthology, Clothes Lines, edited by Celia Miles and Nancy Dillingham, at Highlands Books. From Birkenstocks to bras, red shoes to pink pants suits, prom dresses to funeral gown, our garments, our mother's closet, 75 women writers from western NC reflect in poetry, memoir, story, and essay on their fascination and feeling for the clothes they wear, remember, revere, or reject.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A Love Poem for Valentine's Day


By Nancy Purcell

Somehow I need to find a way to tell you
of the unfolding of myself since you are with me.
There always was a wellspring of love,
but it had to be hidden: life hurt.
Like a walled garden no one could see,
you found my heart and climbed inside.
I’m not sure how, but by some feat of magic,
you moved away yesterday, showing me tomorrow.
What key were you given no other ever used?
Or was it in the lock and no one ever turned it?
You’ve torn out weeds with simple words and touches,
making me free-flying but vulnerable.
Will you remove the wall and nurture the garden?
Or is the wall the challenge and the space only for leasing?
The last stones to be cleared are buried deep, buried yesterday.
If you clear them, you are honor-bound to stay.
Think carefully, for no chains will hold you fast.
But should you leave this garden,
Please close the door and take the key.
No one should ever walk in here but you.

NANCY PURCELL, North Carolina Writers' Network West Representative for Transylvania County, (828)862-8117;

Nancy studied Creative Writing at Florida Atlantic University, served as a North Carolina Writers Network/Elizabeth Squire Daniels Writer-in-Residence, Peace College, Raleigh, NC, under the guidance of Doris Betts, and she teaches Creative Writing in the Brevard College Community Education program.

Her latest undertaking is Quick Coaching; motivating writers and those who wish to write through the use of prompt and various motivational techniques.
Publications: RiverSedge, The MacGuffin, Pangolin Papers, Troika, LongStoryShort, The Square Table, among others, including two anthologies. Her stories have been read on the "Writers' Radio Show" out of Chattanooga, TN.
Nancy is retired from a career in Marketing and Sales. She spends her days in the office writing and in the garden, relaxing and hoping her writing seeds will germinate. She holds a membership in the North Carolina Writers' Network and in PWA.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Christmas Anthology of WNC Women writers

Thanks to editors Celia Miles and Nancy Dillingham, forty-five western North Carolina women writers have had their Christmas stories, poetry, essays, or memoirs, published in an anthology titled "Christmas Presence." It is a beautifully bound book "filled with the unique voices of women writers who have roots in and connections to western North Carolina. These works add seasoning to the cultural landscape of a region already rich in custom and lore. Most of the writers are members of the NCWN and include Glenda Barrett, Celia Miles, Nancy Dillingham, Dee Dee Parker, Nancy Purcell, Susan Snowden, Barbara Ledford Wright, Lana Hendershott, to name a few. The book, "Christmas Presence," can be ordered from Catawba Publishing Company at (704) 717-8452 or It will be available in local book stores and if not, they can get it for you. ISBN #: 978-1-59712-259-7. The stories will bring back fond holiday memories and the book would make a fine gift for a reading friend.

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

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Transylvania County writing group is growing

Nancy Purcell Connects with Writers in Transylvania County

Good news from Transylvania County Wordsmith group: Just a few months ago we had 6 members in our new writers’ group and I was overjoyed! Now I’m really excited because our six has turned into 11. The group is varied not only in personalities but in craft and skill level. What has been so great is having these new people join the group because of our acceptance of diversity! Janet Benway and Alexandra Burroughs, craft-intelligent writers, have added their valuable opinions to our roundtable and we have somehow managed to maintain that important level of sensitivity in the group. Everyone learns from everyone else!

The Brevard College Creekside program for Fall will be offering a new poetry class, double taught by Ms. Benway & Ms. Burroughs, subject matter: Poets as Activists: The importance of giving voice to what goes on around us in a world that seems to be spinning ever faster. I will be teaching a Fiction Craft program, The ABC’s of Creative Writing, during Creekside’s Fall session.

We are growing and, with this growth, I hope the new writers will seek membership in the NCWN & Netwest. We will definitely encourage everyone to come to the Netwest Picnic, September 14th, at Konaheta Park, in Murphy, NC.

Nancy Purcell
Transylvania County Rep.

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.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

String of Pearls, part 1, by Nancy Purcell

Nancy Purcell, writer and teacher lives in Brevard, NC. The following short story was published in about a year ago. The story has been divided into two parts due to length.


Outside Austin, Russell Featherstone drove his Cadillac onto the shoulder of Highway 290, threw the gear into park, and turned to the woman beside him. “What do you say we get married?”
Ellie Pickett’s head jerked toward him so fast she heard her vertebrae crack. At first, when he’d pulled off the highway so abruptly, she thought something was wrong with the engine, but now she believed it was her hearing. “Married? Land sakes, Russell, we just met two weeks ago! Married?” She blinked a few times then fixed her eyes on him. “You’re not one of those crazies, are you?” She shook her head. “You know what I’m sayin’? One of those men that meets a gal, favors the swing of her skirt, and decides to marry her?” Her brow wrinkled and she lowered her chin. “Tell me you’re not some sex maniac. There’ve been plenty of warnin’s on television about men like that.”
Ellie’s husband, Leland Pickett of Seneca, South Carolina, had passed on to Glory some three years ago. Whenever someone inquired about his death, she’d snap her fingers and answer, “Died in his sleep, just like that.” They had one daughter, Lisa, who’d moved to Texas—Austin— with her husband twenty years before.
Ellie and Leland had never visited Lisa during those years; there was always an excuse: too far, too costly, too whatever. In reality, Leland just preferred staying home. So when Lisa invited her mother to Austin for a month, she grabbed the opportunity. Since her husband’s death Ellie had an itch to do something with her life. She’d grown tired of hearing folks gush about their cruises to everywhere. Tired of watching people on TV jump up and down because they’d won a trip to some island she didn’t know existed. And it was because of that itch that she now found herself parked on a Texas roadside with a man named Russell.
“Good Lord, Ellie. All I said was “Why don’t we get married?” Russell let loose of the steering wheel and slumped in the seat. He gently placed his hand on her forearm as if to reassure her she was safe. “I like you, Ellie,” he said in a voice as sweet as a songbird’s. “Hell, I’m crazy over you! Sure we just met, but I’ve closed deals for millions with less time invested.” He blew out a lung full of air, turned up the air-conditioning fan, and waited for her reaction.
“That may be so,” she shot back, waggling a finger at him, “but I’m not some oil field you’re biddin’ on. Not this gal!” She turned down the visor, leaned forward, and studied herself in the lighted mirror. Ellie knew that, despite her age, she was still attractive; the mirror renewed her opinion. She ran her tongue across her teeth and rubbed her lips together, smoothing out pink lipstick. A quick wipe of a finger beneath each eye cleared away smudged eyeliner. As she primped her full white hair and batted the lashes of her blue eyes she could hear her daddy teasing about boys chasing after her. ‘You’ll soon have as many beaus as pearls on a string,’ he’d say, then slap his knee and let loose a belly laugh. Ellie pushed the visor back up, wiggled her fanny into the leather seat and opened her handbag. “Hmm . . . thought I’d put a handkerchief in here before we left Lisa’s.” While she was rummaging, Russell stared at her in amazement. Out of the corner of her eye Ellie caught him watching her and wondered if he still thought of her as a “pint-sized bit of dynamite.”
It was Lisa who’d introduced them to each other. That is, Lisa and her best friend Barbara, who also happened to be Russell’s daughter. The two fifty-year-old empty nesters dedicated way too much time to makeover television shows and romance novels. Having lost control of their children’s lives, and finding themselves unable to exercise little, if any, control over their husbands, they cooked up a plan to enrich the lives of their elderly, single parents: Russell, age eighty-six, and Ellie, eighty-four.
“Well?” Russell queried. Ellie was engaged in zipping and unzipping the eight compartments of her handbag, searching for a hanky. “Ellie! Have you gone deaf?”
“Shush, Russell. Can’t you see I’m thinkin’?” She zipped a small side pocket closed and screwed up her face. “Has it occurred to you that I don’t even know your middle name?” She folded her hands atop the purse and turned her attention to the flowers growing along the roadside. Lovely bluebonnets, she thought. They’d sure look pretty on the kitchen table. I always wanted to do that—keep a white pitcher full of daisies on the table. It’d be like waking up to sunshine. Leland had been allergic to pollen, so fresh flowers in the house were always out of the question. “That’s why the durn things grow outside,” he’d told her. The man even went so far as to chop down the stately pines in the front yard. Their crime: dropping yellow-green pollen come spring. Ellie wondered if Russell had allergies.
“Elvin,” he said. “My middle name is Elvin. Now will you marry me?”
Ellie turned in her seat, reached forward, and lowered the fan speed. “What kind of name is Elvin? Sounds like a family name. Don’t reckon I’ve ever heard it before and, believe me, in South Carolina we’ve got a slew of weird names. Did I ever tell you my husband Leland’s younger brother’s name was Bowser? Family just called him Bow-wow. Now ain’t that an awful thing? Saddling a child with a name like Bowser? I told Lisa if she ever—”
“Ellie, for God’s sake, what are you talkin’ about? Who the hell cares if some kid grew up with the name Bow-wow?”
“Bowser, schmowser. Who cares? Certainly not me, and certainly not today!” Russell reached over and picked up a can of lemonade from the console, took a sip, and set it down. “Mighty tasty for being canned,” he mumbled. He smacked his lips and ran a finger along his mustache then pushed the fan dial up one speed. “I’m talking marriage here and you’re talking gibberish.” Just then an eighteen-wheeler passed by with such speed that the Cadillac rocked.
“Mercy,” Ellie shouted, her hand flying to her chest. “We’ll be killed parked out here in the middle of nowhere, Russell. I don’t think this is a good idea.” She glanced at the key in the ignition as if to will it to turn. Nothing happened. Noticing the Cadillac emblem she recalled how Leland had favored Chevrolets. He always was tight with the dollar. He’d never have bought anything as fine or pricey as this Cadillac. She slid her hand along the soft leather; smooth as a newborn. Wouldn’t take much for a gal to get used to this kind of luxury.
Ellie picked up the conversation. “So I’m talking gibberish, am I? Is this a preview of how I can expect to be treated? Brought up short every time I share a memory?” She peered at him and pursed her lips, then returned her focus to the highway. “There’s enough traffic out there to make a body think it’s a holiday. I suppose if I were to ask why you have those longhorns stuck up there on your hood, well, that’d be gibberish, too.” Without waiting for him to catch up or answer, she leaned forward and opened the glove compartment. “Any chance I'll find a pack of tissues in here? I think I’m gonna need them.” She began removing papers, folders and gadgets, and piling them on her lap. Leland’s old Chevy had a glove compartment about the size of a sandwich, she told herself. Russell’s packed enough junk in her to fill a file cabinet.
While she was busy with her latest project, Russell heaved a sigh and offered a thought. “You know, the last time I pulled over on the side of a highway was back in 1988—or was it ’89? Blew out a tire—right front, I think—could have been right rear, now that I call it to mind. Damn near scared me to death.” Just then two trucks flew past, honking their horns in unison. “Well, talk about being scared to death. You all right, Ellie?” No answer. “Hmm. Where was I?” He gripped the steering wheel as if he could squeeze an answer from it.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

2008 Great year coming for Netwest writers

I've spent most of today working on schedules and calendars for our writers in NCWN West. The John C. Campbell Folk School has hosted a monthly reading for our members for several years, and I try to set up our yearly schedule early. This year we start in February and run through November. Only July is skipped due to a conflict with JCCFS events that month. We still have a few slots to fill in that schedule and will have that finished soon, I'm sure. This year we are happy to have Nancy Purcell from Brevard, Michael Beadle from Canton, Jayne Ferrer from Greenville, SC reading at JCCFS along with many of our local members and others who have read in past years. JCCFS is a wonderful venue for us because the audience often consists of people from far away states and even other countries who come to this wonderful school to study crafts and arts of all kinds, including writing.

Jan Davidson and others at the Folk School produced a documentary about the history of the school and it has now been nominated for an Emmy Award. The documentary is available on DVD by contacting the Folk School at It is well worth the cost.

Twenty-three writing classes have been scheduled this year by Nancy Simpson, resident writer, and among the instructors are Nancy Peacock of Carrboro, NC. Check her out at . I met Nancy briefly at the NCWN Fall Conference and I hope to take her class at JCCFS. Nancy Simpson and Gene Hirsch teach the poetry classes at JCCFS. They have inspired many writers to become poets.

As I plan the schedule and calendar events for Netwest, I promise myself not to overschedule myself to the point where I have no time for my own writing. But it gets harder and harder to do.

I will teach a week long class at JCCFS this spring. Your life - Your Stories begins March 16. If you haven't been to John C. Campbell Folk School to take a class, you must put that on your schedule for sometime soon. It can change your life.