Wednesday, September 30, 2009

June Langford Berkley to be Honored

(This news courtesy of Phyllis Wilson Moore)

In celebration of homecoming, June Langford Berkley, author-writing coach-educator-performer-mentor-world traveler, and humorist, will receive the Salem International University’s Outstanding Achievement Award, October 3, 2009, Salem, West Virginia.

Members of West Virginia Writers Inc, and the West Virginia Library Commission will recognize June not only as a noted author but as the willing judge of state writing contests and as a humorous capable presenter of workshops and historical monologues.

Her novella SHANNAGANEY BLUE, set in West Virginia, is felt by many to have the ring of truth of Harper Lee's novel TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. It is available at James and Law in Clarksburg.

Reservation for the banquet may be obtained by contacting Cheryl L. Rogers, 304-326-1344 or .

Those unable to attend may want to send June a message of congratulation on this, her latest, award. .

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Poet Stephen Earley Jordan II reads at Alderson-Broaddus

On Thursday, October 8, Stephen Earley Jordan II will be on the Alderson-Broaddus campus to read his poetry and prose. The reading will be at 3:00 p.m. in the Humanities Division Lounge, 206 Withers-Brandon. Admission is free, and everyone is invited to attend.
Jordan, originally from Huntington, WV, is a 1999 graduate of Alderson-Broaddus College, where he earned a BA in writing and literature. Shortly after graduation, Jordan left West Virginia for New York City, where he established an editing business, offering clients short- and long-term writing/editing consultations. Clients have included educational publishers, universities, travel magazines, encyclopedias, web sites, and various pharmaceutical advertising agencies.

In May 2006, Jordan published Beyond Bougie, a collection of creative nonfiction, essays, and poetry on race, class, and gender. The book has been used for book clubs and college (multicultural/sociology) courses. During this time, Jordan also created the “Are You Bougie?” presentation, allowing him to visit colleges and speak about being progressive in the Black community. In August 2007, Jordan published a follow-up collection of his works, Cold, Black, and Hungry.

"I see myself as an educator, even though I don't teach in a classroom,” Jordan has said. “Editing and writing allow me to educate my readers about our own deep-rooted hidden agendas, whether it's with my creative writing, nonfiction, or poetry. I write about real life people and our uncomfortable circumstances. People rarely want to talk about these issues. But we must recognize these issues if we want to progress in life. This is why I write."

Jordan recently founded OutStretch Literary Advancements, an educational, literary nonprofit organization building mini-libraries for foster group homes. He also recently released his spoken word CD "Black Baby Tears.” Jordan lives in Bronx, New York.


Monday, September 28, 2009

Press 53 Open Awards 2010 Contest Now Open

The 3rd Annual Press 53 Open Awards Contest is underway and accepting entries for the 2010 Press 53 OpenAwards writing competition.

This year there are six categories: Poetry, Flash Fiction, Short-Short Story, Short Story, Creative Nonfiction, and Novella.

Details are online now at .


Friday, September 25, 2009

WVW Podcast Episode 17 Now Online

Episode 17 of the WVW Podcast has now been posted. It's our second recorded live reading, this time originating from a session of the Greenbrier Valley Theatre's October Literary Tea series, from 2007. The featured material is the short story "Faux Fangs" from Beverly Pauley's collection Gothic Bedtime Stories. This story is the first appearance of Bev's reoccurring character, elderly West Virginia vampire Rutherford Zucks.

The episode also has information about the 2009 Literary Teas as well as a preview of what WV Writers will be doing at the 2009 WV Book Festival in Charleston and some hints about presenters for our upcoming 2010 Summer Conference.

Check it out at our PODCAST PAGE.


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Writers Digest Popular Fiction Awards Contest

Writers Digest has opened their 5th Annual Popular Fiction Awards Writing Contest. Deadline for it is November 2 for the following categories:
  • Romance
  • Mystery/Crime Fiction
  • Science Fiction/Fantasy
  • Thriller/Suspense
  • Horror
See their website for entry requirements and all details.


GVT and WVW’s Annual Literary Tea Series Scheduled for October

GVT’s Annual Literary Tea Series Scheduled for October

Sit back, relax, enjoy hot, fresh tea, and listen to an hour of great works of literature, read by local writers and theatre artists, Thursday evenings in October at Greenbrier Valley Theatre. The Teas begin at 5:30 pm on October 1, 8, and 15, and 22 and offer a soothing experience for the mind; a relaxing hour of reading, complete with tea and coffee and tasty treats.

GVT’s Annual Literary Tea Series is in partnership with the West Virginia Writers and, in addition to guest-artist readers, it features some of the winners of the West Virginia Writers competition. This year’s readers include Belinda Anderson, Willa Izzo, Sara Crickenberger, Tim Armentrout, and many others.

GVT invites the Community to join them for their Annual Autumn series of Literary Teas. Admission is free and no reservations are required. Call GVT Box Office at (304) 645-3838, 10 – 6pm, Monday – Saturday, for more information.

Greenbrier Valley Theatre is handicap accessible and is smoke-free. To be reminded by email of upcoming events, call GVT. Visit for all GVT events.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Writers Prompt Contest Now Open

Dear Writer Friends,

Our West Virginia Writers Group at currently has two writer prompts for contests that will deadline on September 30. We need more participators, more poets entering their poems. Won't you help by going to each of the following contest sites and submitting something?

When we respond to writing prompts and enter contests, we achieve two things: we are inspired to write more poems and we also get to practice our writing craft.

Why not join us?

Here are the two contests. You have until September 30 to submit something.

1. A memoir:

2. An etheree:


Shepherd University Hosts Regional Writers, Photographic Artists, and a Conversation on Mountaintop Removal

A series of programs on Appalachian storytelling and environmental issues will take place at Shepherd University during the week of September 28 through October 3. Award-winning fiction writer Silas House, 2009 Appalachian Heritage Writer-in-Residence at Shepherd, will be on campus along with others to celebrate Appalachian writing and storytelling and to encourage a conversation on environmental issues and Appalachian culture and traditions.

A photographic art show beginning September 15 will inaugurate the series of events. The show exhibits photographs published in the 2009 Anthology of Appalachian Writers, Adriana Trigiani Volume. The exhibit will run through October 5 in the Scarborough Library Reading Room.

During the week of the Appalachian Heritage Celebration at Shepherd, September 28-October 3, a wide range of events and programs will occur. On Monday, September 28, at 7:00 p.m., the Shepherdstown Film Society will host a screening of the documentary Sludge. Dr. Ed. Snyder, Chair of the Environmental Studies Program at Shepherd, will be on hand at Reynolds Hall to introduce and discuss the film. The film is part of a conversation on mountaintop removal that Appalachian Heritage Writer-in-Residence Silas House has inspired. House’s latest book, Something’s Rising, is a collection of oral histories on the subject. Among the figures included in the book are Lee Smith, literary mentor to House, and renowned singer/song-writer Jeanne Ritchie, who will headline the Appalachian Heritage Festival Concert on October 2.

At 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 29, “A Celebration of Appalachian Storytellers“ will present writers featured in the new Anthology of Appalachian Writers, published this spring. Featured poets include West Virginia writers Eddy Pendarvis, Kathy Combiths and regional writers Jeff Mann, Marc Harshman, Karen Robbins, and Justin Batton. A reception will follow the program and readings. The event is sponsored by the WV Center for the Book, which provided funding for the Anthology.

Silas House will speak with local high school students on Wednesday, September 30, followed by a program at the Martinsburg Public Library at 10:30 a.m. Later in the day, there will be a Master Writing Class with Silas House from 3:00 until 4:30 in the Robert C. Bryd Center for Legislative Studies. At 7:00 p.m. House will talk about his life as a playwright and fiction writer at “The Writing Life with Silas House" event, also scheduled at Byrd.

The keynote and awards event is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. Thursday, October 1, at Erma Byrd Hall. This event is sponsored by The WV Humanities Council and The Shepherd University Foundation. House will receive the Appalachian Heritage Writer’s Award and deliver the Scarborough Society Lecture, “The History of Every Country: The Importance of Place.” He will also present the WV Fiction Competition Awards. The public is invited to the reception.

On Friday, October 2, a 5:00 p.m. program is planned for the Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies called “Writers and Renegades.” Appalachian Heritage Journal editor George Brosi from Berea College will be present, along with Silas House, to talk about those writers and renegades whose work and activism have made a positive impact on the environment of Appalachia.

The highlight of the week includes the Friday and Saturday Appalachian Heritage Festival Concerts at 8:00 in the Frank Theater, where singer/songwriter legend Jeanne Ritchie will headline. Events all day Saturday through out Shepherdstown conclude the Festival and the Appalachian Heritage Writer-in-Residence Project. For more information or tickets to the Festival Concerts, call or contact Rachael Meads, PASS Director at Shepherd, at 304.876.5113 or or Dr. Sylvia Bailey Shurbutt, Appalachian Heritage Writers Project Director at 304.876.5220 or See the Appalachian Heritage website for information about Silas House and the Festival at

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Poets and Musicians Opportunity

(This news courtesy of Wilma Acree)

Steve Ritter from Cairo, WV, extends an invitation for poets and musicians to participate in a
called this evening to tell me about a poetry/music event on Oct. 3, 6:30-9:30 pm at the Odd Fellows Building.

Poets and musicians are invited to read or perform. He says his group will put up signs showing where to go, or if anyone wants directions, they may call him at 304-628-3905 (evenings) or 304-834-0526. In addition, Ann Thistle (304-628-3445) will take calls.

Poets or musicians may sell books, Cd's, or tapes.

Cairo is between Parkersburg and Clarksburg off Route 50.


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Anthology of Appalachian Writers is Open for Submissions

(This information courtesy of author Meredith Sue Willis's online newsletter)

ANTHOLOGY OF APPALACHIAN WRITERS IS OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS. The Anthology of Appalachian Writers is a publication that encourages a long-established tradition of storytelling, love of language, and creative expression associated broadly with the area of the country known as Appalachia. Though the principal mission of the anthology is to provide a venue for publication of new writers, it also provides a collection of literature and scholarship that contributes to an understanding and appreciation for the region. Poetry, fiction, memoir, heritage writers, as well as new voices appear in each annual volume of the anthology. To submit any original, unpublished work of fiction or poetry for consideration by the editors, send an electronic copy, along with the information below, to Dr. S. Bailey Shurbutt, . All submissions must be in the submission format below.
Title of Submission:___________________________________________________________
E-mail:____________________ Phone:_____________________
Brief Biography (limit 100 words):________________________________________________
Deadline for Submissions: October 15, 2009.
“THINK OUTSIDE THE CELL” WRITING CONTEST Resilience Multimedia, publisher of the widely praised book, “THINK OUTSIDE THE CELL: AN ENTREPRENEUR’S GUIDE FOR THE INCARCERATED AND FORMERLY INCARCERATED,” is sponsoring its second writing contest for people who are or were in prison, and their loved ones. The books will be widely distributed and widely read.. Contestants may write personal stories about one or more of these topics:
* Reentering society after incarceration
* Waiting for loved ones to return home from prison
* Prison marriages and relationships
Three winners will be chosen for each topic and will receive these prizes:
* 1st Place: $300
* 2nd Place: $150
* 3rd Place: $ 75
Stories that do not win cash prizes will still be eligible for inclusion in the series.
For contest rules and more information, email or call 877-267-2303.


Friday, September 18, 2009

Rumsey Radio Hour Returns

Dear friends of the air & Gee Lee & all

Lend us your ears sooner than later:

Let's get the word out about Rumsey Radio Hour this Sat. and Sun. at Reynolds Hall, Shepherd campus, Shepherdstown: Sat. at 2 and 8; Sun. at 6.

We've grand music and hilarity fresh from the local soil, scented w/ manure and flowers . . .

Clissy has a body electric song against PATH and The Corsets will harmonize and Johnny Dime will fight crime with poetry and Mark Kraham will impersonate a GPS and much more! Hear
Don Oehser sing and play; cheer for radio performed live since 1989. WSHC & other sponsors bring you mirth not to be missed this weekend! Please forward.

Admission is cheap and students FREE.

P.S. WSHC hopes the show will stream through Internet, so if you're far away tune in via: & click to Rumsey Radio Hour.


WVW Podcast Bonus Show 2

The second bonus show for the WV Writers Podcast has now been posted. It features conversational outtakes with Dolly Withrow and Barbara Smith recorded for last week's special podcast. Plus we have a further interruption from my dog.

Find it HERE or on iTunes.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Belinda Anderson radio interview

Author and WV Writers member Belinda Anderson is appearing in an interview on Allegheny Mountain Radio in promotion of her September 19th appearance at the Hillsboro Public Library, hosting a Literary Tour of the writers of WV and their stories.

You can hear the interview online HERE.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Writers’Master Class with Silas House

A master class with writer Silas House is being offered, Wednesday, September 30, 2009, 3:00-4:30 p.m., at the Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies.

This class is sponsored by Four Seasons Book Store and Shepherd University Creative Writing Program.

Antietam Review Senior Editor and WV Writers member Ethan Fischer will moderate.

To participate, email 1-2 page prose and/or poetry manuscript (double-spaced), with name and email address on the manuscript, to


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

STO Fest Begins this Week

In conjunction with Market Fest 2009, the Independent Theatre Collective opens StoFest: A New One-Act Play Festival this weekend. The festival runs Thursday, September 17 through Saturday, September 19 at 8pm and Sunday, September 20 at 3pm and features original plays from WV playwrights. The festival's namesake, Tom Stobart, will also be represented each evening with a staging from his repertoire. Tickets will be available at the door for $10 or festival passes can be purchased online ( for $25.

Wheeling-native writers include Ned Gallaway ("Painting Face"), Butch Maxwell ("Fine"), Jeremy F Richter ("L3" & "Evolving Elliot") and Ron Scott, Jr. ("Opposite But Equal"). Other writers' resumes read like a who's who of theatre artists from Tennessee Williams Award-winner, Jeffrey Scott Elwell to WV Writers podcast creator, Eric Fritzius.

"It is a thrill to be presenting four solid days of all-original, all-WV theatre," says ITC Managing Director, Jeremy Richter. "We have fifteen plays written by ten different writers featuring a cast of twenty. To have this large of a collaborative team in our very first year of StoFest is just incredible."

One play, however, will break the "all-WV" mold. Saturday evening's "Postcards From a Dead Dog" by Pittsburgh playwright, F.J. Hartland will receive a special staged reading. Hartland's script has been highly touted, even being named the Best Play at Pittsburgh's New Works Festival. The reading will feature Arlene Merryman and Richter as a mother/son duo who find it easier to communicate through postcards "sent" from the dead family dog, Rusty.

Performances will be held at Historic Second Presbyterian, 2001 Market Street in Wheeling and doors will open an hour prior to curtain. For further information including online ticket sales and each night's line-up please visit


Think Outside the Cell Writing Contest

(This information courtesy of author Meredith Sue Willis's online newsletter)

“THINK OUTSIDE THE CELL” WRITING CONTEST Resilience Multimedia, publisher of the widely praised book, “THINK OUTSIDE THE CELL: AN ENTREPRENEUR’S GUIDE FOR THE INCARCERATED AND FORMERLY INCARCERATED,” is sponsoring its second writing contest for people who are or were in prison, and their loved ones. The books will be widely distributed and widely read.

Contestants may write personal stories about one or more of these topics:
* Reentering society after incarceration
* Waiting for loved ones to return home from prison
* Prison marriages and relationships
Three winners will be chosen for each topic and will receive these prizes:
* 1st Place: $300
* 2nd Place: $150
* 3rd Place: $ 75

Stories that do not win cash prizes will still be eligible for inclusion in the series.
For contest rules and more information, email or call 877-267-2303.


Monday, September 14, 2009

History Alive! Program Seeks New Characters

The Humanities Council is seeking proposals for new characters for our History Alive! program. We have special interest in portrayals of significant Civil War and statehood related figures such as Stonewall Jackson, John Brown, and Francis Pierpont in preparation for the upcoming sesquicentennial of the Civil War beginning in 2011.

To apply, contact program officer Mark Payne at 304-346-8500 or

Friday, September 11, 2009

WVW Podcast Shirley Young Campbell Tribute Special


This week we present a special double-sized podcast episode in tribute to the lady without whom there would not be a WV Writers, Shirley Young Campbell. Mrs. Campbell passed away August 17, 2009. For this special episode, we interview Dr. Barbara Smith, Dolly Withrow and Kirk Judd, each counted among the charter members of WV Writers and longtime friends of Mrs. Campbell. We discuss Mrs. Campbell's many accomplishments in promoting the writing and writers of WV, her role as a catalyst in the creation of West Virginia Writers, Inc., her co-founding of Mountain State Press, her own writing and many publications, what she was like as a person, and her role as the "Literary Mother" of so many of the finest writers of our state and beyond.

For those of you unfamiliar with the history of our organization, this is a podcast not to be missed.

Many thanks to Phyllis Wilson Moore for her tremendous help in the research for this podcast.

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Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Writers Workshop of Horror book signing

BARBOURSVILLE, W.Va. - A variety of nationally known horror writers will converge upon Barboursville this Sat., Sept. 5th, at Huntington Mall Borders bookstore.

In celebration of the release of Writers Workshop of Horror—a new book that focuses solely on the craft of writing—several contributors to the book will make a one-time appearance in the Mountain State—making it a mini horror writer’s convention, of sorts. The acclaimed writers will be meeting and greeting Borders visitors from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

Among those scheduled to appear will be Gary A. Braunbeck, Lucy Snyder, Elizabeth Massie, Tim Waggoner, Jason Sizemore, C. Cameron Fuller, Brian J. Hatcher, and Michael Knost.
“We’ve assembled a dream-team of horror writers for this weekend event—many are Stoker Award winners and represent the top storytellers in the business,” said Keith Davis, of Woodland Press.

All the participants will be signing special copies of Writers Workshop of Horror as well as other titles they each have penned, during this gathering. They will also be available to answer questions from the public during an informal panel forum.

“This may be the literary event of the year. We’re extremely fortunate to have these authors at our bookstore. This is a rare, rare treat for book lovers in West Virginia,” said Lill Neace, of Borders.

Besides their contribution to Writers Workshop of Horror, the authors represented at the event have written many of the most popular books currently available in the horror and fantasy genre. In addition, each has contributed works to the popular regional series, Legends of the Mountain State, also published by Woodland Press.

Among the authors of Writers Workshop of Horror are several accomplished West Virginians, including Logan County resident Michael Knost, who also serves as editor of this title as well as the Legends of the Mountain State series. Other in-state contributors include Charleston residents Brian J. Hatcher and G. Cameron Fuller.

Gary A. Braunbeck, of Columbus, Ohio, has many other published titles including Far Dark Fields; In Silent Graves; Keepers; Coffin County; Mr. Hands; X3; Masques V; The Little Orange Book of Odd Stories; and Fear in a Handful of Dust: Horror as a Way of Life.

Braunbeck’s wife, Lucy Snyder, has authored other titles including Spellbent; Installing Linux on a Dead Badger, Sparks and Shadows, and Chimeric Machines.

Works by Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, author Elizabeth Massie include Sineater; Power of Persuasion; Wire Mesh Mothers; The Fight for Right; 1609: Winter of the Dead; 1863: A House Divided; 1870: Not With Our Blood; The Little Magenta Book of Mean Stories; and she co-authored The Secret of the Silver Shoes; The Tudors: Thy Will Be Done; and The Tudors: King Takes Queen.

Tim Waggoner, who hails from Dayton, Ohio, has written many titles, including Thieves of Blood; Forge of the Mind Slayers; Sea of Death; Darkness Wakes; Pandora Drive; The Harmony Society; Like Death; Valhalla; All Too Surreal; and Godfire.

Kentucky resident Jason Sizemore’s works include Aegri Somnia and Gratia Placenti: For the Sake of Pleasing.

The book signing event is open to the public, and patrons are encouraged to come early to speak with their favorite authors. For additional information, contact Huntington Mall Borders, at Barboursville, at 304-736-6233.


Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Inspiration for Writers Contest

Another contest from Sandy Tritt's company, Inspiration For Writers, Inc.

Below is the Cliff Notes version, but check out her blog site for full details, and to qualify for the contest. This one includes a GREAT PRIZE! Her blog can be found at

Good luck!

In our last post, we covered dialogue, and we gave you some examples of ways you can use beats, physical descriptions, to show your characters in your stories. Here’s your chance to put that into practice. We’re going to give you five themes, and it’s up to you to write the dialogue.

But first, a few rules for this writing contest:

You don’t have to use all five themes, but you do need to use at least one.

You should stick to one character per theme. (Feel free to use the same character across themes.)

You don’t have to use a beat, but you do need to make sure you format attributions correctly.

In order to win the prize, you must be a follower on our blog.

Please leave us a way to contact you with your entry.

Here are your five themes:

Have a character declare his or her love.

Have a character declare his or her hate.

Have a character greet a friend.

Have a character greet his or her nemesis.

Have a character respond to an embarrassing situation.

Post your answers in the comment section for a chance to win an e-book of our popular Tips and Techniques Workbook. You can get a sneak peek of the workbook at our website. We'll announce the winner Friday, September 4th.

Posted By Inspiration for Writers to Inspiration for Writers, Inc. at 8/28/2009 11:40:00 AM


Anna Egan Smucker Display and Reception

(This news is courtesy of Phyllis Wilson Moore)

Anna Egan Smucker, an award winning author of Harrison County, will be honored with a window display of her work and a reception on Thursday, September 10, 2009 from 3:30-4:30 at James and Law, 217 West Main Street, Clarksburg, West Virginia.

The event will recognize Ms. Smucker’s latest honor: her recent children’s book, "Golden Delicious: A Cinderella Apple Story," is the choice of the West Virginia Library Commission and the WV Center for the Book as the one book to best represent WV at the 2009 National Book Festival in Washington, D. C.

The public is invited to meet Ms. Smucker and discover how she came to write a rollicking book about the origins of the state’s official fruit. Refreshments will be served at this free event.