New River Bridge, Hawks Nest, West Virginia by Kevin Scanlon
The West Virginia Issue
(All Photos by Kevin Scanlon, copyright 2008)
Welcome to the Hamilton Stone Review # 16, Fall 2008. This issue showcases 46 writers and one photographer associated with the state of West Virginia. Please set aside any stereotypes you have picked up from a lifetime of media propaganda. These poets and writers know high culture and commercial culture, but they also know folk culture, and their world view is shaped by a particular landscape of round mountains and coal mines. Be prepared for some stories of hard times and occasional violence, but also expect poems that burgeon with redbud in the spring and others that express the pain of mountaintop removal.
Some of the writers here have always lived and worked in West Virginia; some were born in West Virginia and moved away, and some chose this place as adults-- the only state that sits totally within the Appalachian geographic region.
There will be immense diversity, and some things in common--perhaps especially a certain mindset that comes from living in a place that is supposed to be on the periphery, not at the center, a place where you can stand on a hilltop and have a long view. West Virginians also tend towards a preference for writing about the quotidian world rather than about imaginary or interior landscapes, although this is far from universal.
But perhaps most important of this handful of commonalities is that West Virginians believe in the music of words and the importance of listening. You will find here a profound conviction that language matters, that literature matters-- and above all, the human voice.
-- Meredith Sue Willis, October 2008
Table of Contents
And then I arrive at the powerful green hill
The Greeks of 1983
Sometimes What Happens in a Distant City
Mary Lucille DeBerry
The Cat's Meow
To My Great-Great-Grandmother
The Mennonite Relief Sale
Ovid in the Coal Fields
Basement Poem #2
Hung From the Red Light, Four Blocks from Home (Huntington, WV)
Seven League Boots
Even the Tin Man Had a Heart
Just Like That
What We Don't Know
At the Narcissist Café
January at the Feeder
Foraging at Starbucks
On the Edge of Highway 10 North
O, Second Skin
When Mother Died
On the Eighth Day
The Disparate Fates of Einstein’s Brain and Osceola’s Head
What with Johnny Cash dying
Sue Ann Simar
What It Took To Write This Poem
Sliding Down a Hill
I Hate It!
Anna Egan Smucker
Cersis Canadensis– Redbud
Never As Good As Silence
Little girl, little girl
They Come Back
Nails and Applebutter
Someone Is Calling Your Name
Ann Pancake: Keeper of Stories
Out of the Woods
Virgil and Mary
Crystal Allene Cook
Disaster Destination or Almost Heaven?
Deane Lindsey Kern
What the Snakes Took
The Girl With No Face
Gretchen Moran Laskas
A Sign of Respect
Trailer Dogs Barking
The Old Gypsy Woman
Where I'm From
A Death in the Mountains
Review of Demonstative Pronouns by Barbara Smith
M. Glenn Taylor
Arms Youngblood, 112 Pound Champion
Beyond the Apple Orchard
Phyllis Wilson Moore
On the Eighth Day
God, in a playful mood,
Piled up West Virginia,
Then patted her down again.
Pile, pinch, press, punch,
On a hunch he left her
And it was good.
[This poem has been published previously \ in Appalachian Heritage Vol. 23, No. 1 Winter, 1995. Berea, Kentucky and in Wild Sweet Notes: Fifty Years of West Virginia Poetry 1950-1999. (2000), Influx: A Literary Magazine of Alderson-Broaddus College (2006), and The West Virginia Encyclopedia (2006) ]
Dory Adams grew up on Jacks Mountain in central Pennsylvania, in Mifflin and Huntingdon counties. Her work has appeared in The Avery Anthology, Blue Earth Review, Hobart, Slipstream, Forge, Word Riot, The Oklahoma Review, Common Ground Magazine, Shalla Magazine, Paper Street and Workers Write! Tales from the Clinic. Dory earned her MFA from Vermont College. She lives in Pittsburgh, where she is at work on a novel titled The October Earth.
Belinda Anderson writes from her log home that sits atop a knoll in a meadow in the mountains of southern West Virginia. She is the author of three short story collections: The Well Ain’t Dry Yet, The Bingo Cheaters and the just released Buckle Up, Buttercup. Her literary work was selected for inclusion on the first official literary map of West Virginia, published by Fairmont State University. The former newspaper reporter also leads creative writing workshops and presents readings to children and adults in classrooms and at retreats and conferences. Read articles by Belinda, reviews of her work and more at http://www.belindaanderson.com/ .
Maggie Anderson is the author of four books of poems, most recently Windfall: New and Selected Poems published by the University of Pittsburgh Press in 2000. She is the co-editor, with David Hassler, of AFTER THE BELL: Contemporary American Prose about School, the companion volume to their award-winning anthology LEARNING BY HEART: Contemporary American Poetry about School. Both volumes are published by the University of Iowa Press. Anderson is also the editor of the new and selected poems of Louise McNeill and co-editor of A Gathering of Poets. Currently Maggie Anderson is the director and a member of the faculty in the Northeast Ohio MFA program at Kent State University, where she directs the Wick Poetry Center and edits the Wick Poetry Series of the Kent State University Press.
Colleen Anderson writes songs, poems, travel features, children’s stories, and essays from her studio, Mother Wit Writing and Design, in Charleston, WV. Visit her at http://www.motherwitdesign.com.
Debbie Benedetti is Associate Professor of English/Academic Studies and Writing Coordinator at Fairmont State in Fairmont, West Virginia. She has previously published poetry in Alderson Broaddus’s Grab-A-Nickel and Influx, and Fairmont State’s Seasonal Collection of Work. She earned her Bachelors in English and Master’s Degree at West Virginia University. Debbie is a native of Shinnston, WV. She relished growing up in the coal mining boomtown where work, play, and imagination flourished. She currently resides in Bridgeport, WV with her husband and has two grown daughters.
Laura Treacy Bentley is a poet and fiction writer from Huntington, West Virginia. Lake Effect, her first book of poetry, was published in 2006 by an imprint of Bottom Dog Press. Her work has been published in the United States and Ireland in literary journals such as The New York Quarterly, Art Times, Poetry Ireland Review, Antietam Review, Rosebud, Wind, The Stinging Fly, Kestrel, ABZ, Crannog, Now & Then, 10x3plus, and in twelve anthologies. She received a Fellowship Award for Literature from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts, and her poetry has been featured on the websites of A Prairie Home Companion and Poetry Daily. In 2003 she read her poetry with Ray Bradbury. In 2008 she was writer-in-residence for the Marshall University Writing Project. Her website is www.lauratreacybentley.com.
Crystal Allene Cook, born in West "by God" Virginia, is a self-described "hillbilly-New-Yorker-Angelina." A Barnard alumna and a creative writing Fulbright recipient, Cook holds an MST from the New School and an MFA in Writing from Antioch LA. Her creative work has appeared in the U.S. in Shenandoah, the Flint Hills Review, the Southeast Review, Ararat, and online in CARVE. In the fall of 2008, she is organizing a public art project (ArtKnowsNoBorders.com) to benefit Doctors Without Borders, and, in a free download format, she is launching her novel about a Tazewell, VA native caught in the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan (Bombardirovka.com). For her “day” work, Cook is currently in collaboration projects to bring into public debate new female-friendly business models for the global entertainment industry, with a particular focus on mainstream and independent film, VOD, and multi-platform entities. You can also catch her around Los Angeles gigging with several bands, playing E-flat tuba.
Mary Lucille DeBerry worked many years in Morgantown for West Virginia Public Television where she produced historical, cultural and public affairs series, segments and programs. Her poems have appeared in numerous regional journals and anthologies."Autumn Walk and "Memorial Day" were first published in Appalachian Heritage; "The Cat's Meow" was first published in Grab-a Nickel; and "To My Great-Great-Grandmother" was published in Panorama. These poems are part of a forthcoming collection: Sarvis and Spruce.
Lori D'Angelo is an MFA student in fiction at WVU. Her work has appeared in Pequin. She is also a reader for the online literary journal Swink.
Cheryl Denise grew up in Elmira, Ontario. Currently she and her husband, Mike Miller, are part of the intentional community of Shepherds Field, near Philippi, WV. The community raises Jacob Sheep and sells wool blankets and yarn. Cheryl works as an RN for the Barbour County Senior Center’s in home care program. She is the author of the poetry book, I Saw God Dancing, published by Cascadia Publishing House, co-published by Herald Press. This collection won first place in the annual West Virginia Writers Spring Competition. This year she won first place for her poem Nickel Mines, in The George Scarbrough Prize for Poetry, from Lincoln Memorial University.
Deane Lindsey Kern’s work has been published in Creative Nonfiction, Gulf Coast and the Potomac Review. He earned an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Pittsburgh. He lives in Charles Town, WV with his wife, the novelist Priscilla Rodd.
Dr. Victor M. Depta is the publisher of Blair Mountain Press, established in 1999. The emphasis of the press is the environment, such as the recent issue, Coal: A Poetry Anthology, edited by Chris Green. Dr. Depta has published nine books of poetry, three novels, two volumes of comedic plays, a collection of essay on poetry and mysticism, and over two-hundred poems in magazines and journals. He has a Ph.D. in American literature from Ohio University, an M.A. in English from San Francisco State University, and a B.A. in English from Marshall University. A retired professor of English from the University of Tennessee at Martin, he is currently teaching part-time at Marshall.
Harry Gieg has lived and worked in Huntington, West Virginia, for the past 28 years but grew up in North Philadelphia (“North Philly”), in Pennsylvania. He’s published poetry in Jarcaranda, Earlham Review, Pennsylvania Review, and other journals, and in the anthologies, Tobacco: A Literary Anthology, published by the Kentucky Writers’ Coaliltion, Guyandotte Poets, published by Trillium Press, and volume 2 of Wild Sweet Notes, by Publishers’ Place. His critical writing has been published in The Appalachian Journal and The Journal of Appalachian Studies. Gieg’s a recipient of an NEA-funded West Virginia Commission for the Arts Fellowship Award for poetry.
Denise Giardina is the acclaimed author of Storming Heaven and The Unquiet Earth as well as of Good King Harry and Saints and Villains. She has been actrive in working against mountaintop removal and ran for governor of West Virginia on the Mountain Party ticket in 2000.
Chris Green is a poet, a father, a husband, a Kentuckian-turning-West-Viriginian, and word-teacher. His calling is to create connection, to foster self-awareness, and to mid-wife poems in everyone he meets. In his off time, he makes art with his daughter, sings songs to his baby son, and loves his wife. He does all of this from his sweet home in Huntington, where his family looks out into the world and creates. He is also a professor of English at Marshall University, has edited Coal: A Poetry Anthology, is almost done with his book The Social Life of Poetry: Appalachia, Race, and Radical Modernism, and publishes poems nigh and yon.
Marc Harshman, raised in rural Indiana, has lived his adult life in West Virginia where, for many years, he taught in a three-room country school. Periodical publication of his poems include The Georgia Review, Wilderness, Appalachian Heritage, Southern Humanities Review, Shenandoah, and The Progressive. He is the author of three chapbooks of poetry including most recently Local Journeys (Finishing Line, 2004). He is also the author of eleven children's picture books including The Storm, a Smithsonian Notable Book for Children.
Patricia Hopper is a native of Dublin, Ireland and lives in West Virginia. She earned an B.A. and M.A. from West Virginia University. She received honors from WVU such as the Waitman Barbe Creative Writing Award and the Virginia Butts Sturm Award. She has received numerous awards from the West Virginia Writers’ competitions ranging from second place to honorable mention. Her fiction and non-fiction has been published in magazines, reviews, and anthologies.
Kirk Judd has lived, worked, trout fished and wandered around in West Virginia all of his life. Kirk was a member of the Appalachian Literary League, a founding member and former president of West Virginia Writers, Inc., and is a founding member of Allegheny Echoes, Inc., dedicated to the support and preservation of WV cultural heritage arts. He is internationally known for his performance work combining poetry and old time music, and has performed poetry across the State at fairs, concerts, and festivals for the past 30 years.
Norman Julian is columnist-at-large for The Dominion Post newspaper in Morgantown, West Virginia, and files stories from throughout the state. He is the author of four books. This essay is part of his soon-to-be-published fifth book, Trillium Acres. You can check out his offerings at normanjulian.com.)
Before Chuck Kinder became a full-fledged fictioneer, whose work reflects his personal philosophy that everything one writes should be as literally true as the Bible, he worked variously as a coal miner, moonshiner, bartender, bouncer, bandit, prize-fighter, circus performer, tango teacher, cook, cowboy, and itinerant college professor. The author of several books, Kinder has won a number of awards and honors over the years, his favorite among them being a Most Improved Prisoner of the Month Commendation from the West Virginia Fayette County Christian Jailers Association. Kinder is currently a professor and Writing Program Director at the University of Pittsburgh.
P. J. Laska originated in the northern Appalachian coalfields of West Virginia. He is now exploring, photographing, and writing about the Sonoran desert of southern Arizona and Mexico.
Gretchen Moran Laskas is an eighth generation West Virginian, and is the author of many short stories, essays and two novels focusing on her native state: The Midwife's Tale and The Minter's Daughter. She now lives in Fairfax, VA, with her husband and son. Her website is www.gretchenlaskas.com.
George Lies, a short story writer in Morgantown, WV, is past President of West Virginia Writers, Inc. He has worked with WV writers on GoldenRod Writers Conference (1983-2001); published limited editions, Pokeberry Days, Janus ’95, Agent Orange, and Mist on the Mon. A former reporter/editor for newspapers in U.S. and Brazil (1970-1976), he wrote Keys to Heaven, which was translated and published in Stenau, the oldest literary journal in Romania. "Trailer Dogs Barking" received a WVW, Inc. State Prize in short story.
Susan Maczko was raised and lives in Morgantown, WV. She graduated summa cum laude from West Virginia University where she earned bachelor and master’s degrees. She also completed a certificate in creative writing. She was selected for the Kestrel Creative Writing Conference at Fairmont State College in 1996, and has been published in several literary and trade magazines. A member of West Virginia Writers, Inc., Golden Key National Honor Society, and Phi Kappa Phi, she has been employed at WVU for nearly 20 years.
Keith Maillard was born and raised in Wheeling, West Virginia. He is the author of thirteen novels—most of them set in West Virginia—and one book of poetry. He has won the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, the Gerald Lampert Award (for poetry), the Creative Arts Prize given by the Polish American Historical Association (for The Clarinet Polka), and the Literary Merit Award given by the West Virginia Library Association. In 2004, he was inducted into the Wheeling, West Virginia, Hall of Fame. He is currently the Chair of the Creative Writing Program at the University of British Columbia. He lives in Vancouver with his wife and two daughters.
Marie Manilla, a native West Virginian, is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her fiction has appeared in The Chicago Tribune as a 2003 Nelson Algren Finalist, Prairie Schooner where she received the Lawrence Foundation Award for best short story in 1997, Mississippi Review, Calyx Journal, The Long Story, Yemassee Review, ViêtNow, Timber Creek Review, Chaffin Journal, Carve, and Toyon Review. She recently won the Fred Bonnie Award for best first novel. Shrapnel, set in her hometown of Huntington, will be published in spring 2009 by River City Publishing in Montgomery, Alabama. “Caving,” the first chapter of Shrapnel, first appeared in the fall 2004 issue of GSU Review. Marie continues to live in Huntington where she teaches at Marshall University. Her website is www.mariemanilla.com.
Katherine Manley is a middle school teacher from southern West Virginia where she was born and raised. She is currently writing a memoir that depicts the struggles and hardships her family endured while suffering through poverty. Black Gold is one story from her collection. She has won several teaching awards including the WV Freida Riley Teacher’s Achievement Award. This award is given to a teacher who has overcome enormous adversity and has made a significant difference in the lives of students.
Jeff Mann’s books include two collections of poetry, Bones Washed with Wine and On the Tongue; a book of personal essays, Edge; a novella, Devoured, included in Masters of Midnight: Erotic Tales of the Vampire; a collection of poetry and memoir, Loving Mountains, Loving Men; and a volume of short fiction, A History of Barbed Wire, winner of a Lambda Literary Award. He teaches creative writing at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia.
Lee Maynard was born and raised in the hardscrabble ridges and hard-packed mountains of Southern West Virginia, an upbringing that darkens and shapes much of his writing. Maynard's novel, Crum, was the first original fiction published by Washington Square Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. Sometimes called "the book that wouldn't die", Crum was republished by Vandalia Press (a commercial imprint of West Virginia University Press). Crum was the first book published by Vandalia and within a year became the best selling book in the history of the university. The National Endowment for the Arts awarded a Literary Fellowship in Fiction to Maynard for Crum's sequel, Screaming with Cannibals. The third volume of theCrum trilogy, The Scummers , is in progress. Much of Maynard's work is highly controversial. Crum was banned in his home state and, even today, stirs deep, conflicting emotions among the people of Appalachia. Maynard's short fiction has appeared in such publications such as Columbia Review of Literature, Washington Post, Appalachian Heritage, and Backcountry. As a journalist, Maynard has been an assignment writer for Reader's Digest for more than two decades. His journalism and non-fiction work have appeared more than 100 times in publications as diverse as The Saturday Review, Dual Sport News, Rider Magazine, Country America, and Christian Science Monitor. An avid outdoorsman, he is a mountaineer, sea kayaker, skier and former professional river runner.
John McKernan grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and moved to West Virginia in 1967 to teach at Marshall University. He studied at the following schools: University of Omaha, University of Arkansas, Columbia University, and Boston University. He edits ABZ Press and his most recent book is a selected poems, Resurrection of the Dust.
Llewellyn McKernan has lived in West Virginia longer than anywhere else on earth. She considers it her home. Pudding House Press recently published her third book of poetry, Llewellyn McKernan's Greatest Hits.
Phyllis Wilson Moore of Clarksburg, West Virginia, an avid reader and word lover, researches and writes about the literature of West Virginia. Her publication credits are in the genres of fiction, literary history, memoir, nonfiction, and poetry. She headed the state’s effort to create its first official literary map, “From a Place Called Solid.” Poet Barbara Smith is one of the authors selected for inclusion on the map.
Ann Pancake is a native of West Virginia. Her first novel, Strange As This Weather Has Been (Counterpoint 2007), features a southern West Virginia family devastated by mountaintop removal mining. Based on interviews and real events, the novel was one of Kirkus Review’s Top Ten Fiction Books of 2007, won the 2007 Weatherford Prize, and was a finalist for the 2008 Orion Book Award. Her collection of short stories, Given Ground, won the 2000 Bakeless award, and she has also received a Whiting Award, an NEA grant, and a Pushcart Prize. Her fiction and essays have appeared in journals and anthologies like Glimmer Train, Virginia Quarterly Review, Narrative, and New Stories from the South. She earned her BA in English at West Virginia University and a PHD in English Literature from the University of Washington. Currently, she teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Pacific Lutheran University.
Eddy Pendarvis, born in eastern Kentucky, has lived in Huntington, WV, and taught at Marshall University for over twenty years. Her poems and essays, often focused on life in rural Appalachia, appear in Appalachian Heritage, Appalachian Journal, Antietam Review, Indiana Review, Now & Then, Wind Magazine, and other journals. Her most recent poetry collection, Like the Mountains of China, and her new collection of memoirs by and about an eastern Kentucky family, Raft Tide and Railroad: How We Lived and Died, were published by Blair Mountain Press.
Cat Pleska is a freelance writer/editor and a 6th generation West Virginian. She's a regular contributor to Wonderful, West Virginia magazine. She also writes and records essays for West Virginia Public Radio. The essay, "Unexpected Harvest" first aired on WV public radio in December 2007.
Kevin Scanlon was born in Pittsburgh and has spent the last thirty-five years documenting heavy industry and railroads across the country. He is drawn to subjects such as steel mills (both working and abandoned), the coalfields of southern West Virginia, and our dwindling railway systems (focusing primarily on railroads in Appalachia). His images capture an important historical era that spans the end of the twentieth century into the new millennium. Kevin Scanlon’s photographs have been displayed at several art museums and galleries as well as appearing in various railroad-themed books and magazines, and on the covers of the literary journal Paper Street. He is currently working on a series of industrial landscapes in the Pittsburgh area. For more of his work, see his website and Link Museum
Carter Taylor Seaton is a free-lance writer and West Virginia native who lives in Huntington with her husband, Richard Cobb. During the 1970s and 1980s, while directing a rural craft cooperative, she met many artists and musicians who had moved to the state during the back-to-the-land movement of the 1960s and 1970s. In 2006 she received a West Virginia Humanities Foundation Grant and a Professional Development Grant from the West Virginia Division of Culture & History to research the impact these artisans and musicians have made on the state’s cultural climate. An essay entitled “Those Who Came,” which summarized her research, appeared in the 2007 Spring Edition of Appalachian Heritage, the literary journal published by Berea College. In 2008, she was awarded a 2007 Denny C. Plattner award for Outstanding Non-Fiction for the piece. Her first novel, Father’s Troubles, was also named as a finalist for the prestigious ForeWord Magazine 2003 Book of the Year award in the category of Historical Fiction. Ms. Seaton is a contributor to the West Virginia Encyclopedia, MetroValley Magazine, Marshall Magazine, St. Mary’s Today and the Huntington Quarterly. In 2003 her creative non-fiction work, "Family Values," was one of eighteen pieces from across the southeast accepted for the anthology, Lessons Learned, Volume I. In 2002 her creative non-fiction essay, "On Death and Dying," won First Place in the Reader's Choice Awards at the West Virginia Writer's Conference.
Sue Ann Simar works in healthcare and is also an art collector. She has always lived in the Appalachian Mountains--Allegheny, Laurel Highlands, Chestnut Ridge.
Barbara Smith—Writer/editor/medical ethicist. Emerita Professor of Literature and Writing, Alderson-Broaddus College, Philippi. Most recent book—CHICK FLICKS, a collection of short stories (Mountain State Press, 2008)
Anna Egan Smucker is the author of No Star Nights, winner of the 1990 International Reading Association Children’s Book Award in the Younger Reader category. Her other books include Outside the Window, A History of West Virginia, To Keep the South Manitou Light, and The Life of Saint Brigid. A new book, titled Golden Delicious: A Cinderella Apple Story, is just out. Illustrated by Kathleen Kemly, it’s about the discovery of the Golden Delicious apple in Clay County, WV. Recipient of a 2005 WV Arts Commission Artist Fellowship Award in Children’s Literature, Anna makes her home in Bridgeport, West Virginia. In addition to writing, she does author presentations and conducts writing workshops throughout the country.
Beth Staley lives and writes in Morgantown, WV, where she is pursuing a Ph.D. in late nineteenth and twentieth century American poetry at West Virginia University. Her poems have appeared in Kestrel and Crate, whose editors named her their Tomas Rivera selection for her work as a writer and teacher. She is grateful to the natural landscapes and soundscapes of West Virginia.
Kevin Stewart, a native of Princeton, WV, is the author of The Way Things Always Happen Here: Eight Stories and a Novella (Vandalia Press 2007) and Margot (Texas Review Press 2000). The collection was nominated for Foreword Magazine’s Book of the Year Award for Fiction/Short Stories and the Weatherford Award for Appalachian Fiction/Poetry. Stewart has also been awarded Appalachian Heritage’s Plattner Award in Fiction, the Texas Review Novella Prize, and state arts fellowships from West Virginia and Louisiana. His fiction is forthcoming in the Southeast Review and has appeared in Shenandoah, Louisiana Literature, Connecticut Review, and more. After stints at WVU and LSU, Stewart now teaches in the writing program at the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown and is at work on Tales From North Gates, a collection of related short stories and shorts set in the post-Katrina North Gates neighborhood adjacent to LSU in Baton Rouge.
M. Glenn Taylor was born and raised in Huntington, West Virginia. His first novel, The Ballad of Trenchmouth Taggart, was published by West Virginia University Press in June 2008. The book was named a Fall 2008 Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. He teaches English and fiction writing at Harper College in suburban Chicago, where he lives with his wife and two sons.
Sandra Vrana is a professor of English at Alderson-Broaddus College, teaching composition and literature. She is a member of Barbour County Writers and served as the second editor of Grab-A-Nickel, after Barbara Smith, until last year.
Randi Ward was born and raised in West Virginia. Her most recent photography project, 'holdfast', was on display in Morgantown, WV during May and June 2008, and her debut photo-poetry collection, meditations on salt, was published in the Faroe Islands in 2007 under the pseudonym Randi á Ryggi. Randi has just finished translating Rithøvundabókin (a lengthy index of Faroese writers' biographies) to English and has a poem included in the upcoming edition of Vencil, a Faroese journal featuring Faroese literature.
Sherrell R. Wigal is a native of West Virginia, currently living in Parkersburg, WV. Her work has been published in numerous US and regional literary publications. She is active in the writing community of West Virginia and conducts many writing workshops throughout the region. She also frequently performs her work with “old-time” musicians in many music venues across the area. She is currently in production for two CD’s which will include her original poetry in a unique presentation. Much of her work is drawn from her strong connection with the geography and people of West Virginia and Appalachia.
Dolly Withrow, a retired English professor, taught at West Virginia State University for 16 years. She also taught writing classes for the University of Iowa’s world-famous Summer Writing Festival. She is the author of four books: From the Grove to the Stars, the history of West Virginia State College; The Confident Writer, a grammar-based writing textbook for college students and writers in general; More than Penny Candy and Beyond the Apple Orchard. Her last two books comprise creative nonfiction stories set in West Virginia and satire on today’s society. Both were featured three times as “Book of the Month” in Wonderful West Virginia magazine. The West Virginia Chamber of Commerce purchased 250 copies of Penny Candy to present at The Greenbrier to CEOs of businesses. The Marietta Times in Ohio gave Dolly’s last two books glowing reviews and compared her work with that of Mark Twain. Her last two books can be ordered from major bookstores throughout the nation. They can also be ordered online from Barnes & Noble and amazon.com. A columnist for The Charleston Daily Mail and The Jackson Herald, Dolly has won national writing awards and numerous awards for her columns entered in the West Virginia Press Association’s competition. West Virginia Public Radio broadcast her essays for three years. She is a public speaker and grammar workshop presenter.
Eastbound, Hawks Nest, West Virginia by Kevin Scanlon