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Poetry, Literature, Writing

Writers in Western North Carolina? Yes! Asheville has been a haven for writers for well over a century. The mountains have proved an inspiration to those who write whether for personal enjoyment solely or for publication.
Great Smokies Writing River Review: Arts & Culture MagazineProgram     The Writers’ Workshop of Asheville     NC Writers’ Network     Writing Center at AB Tech     The Asheville Poetry Review      Rapid River Review: Arts & Culture Magazine    Jane’s Circles

Malaprop’s Bookstore & Cafe July Events

Wednesday, July 5 at 7 pm

David Madden presents MARBLE GODDESSES AND MORTAL FLESH

The thirteenth work of fiction by Knoxville native and Black Mountain resident David Madden consists of four novellas that weave together the life of the inimitable Lucius Hutchfield as he moves from youth to middle age and between vocations and adventures. Robert Morgan calls David Madden “a master Appalachian storyteller.” Whether you count yourself among Madden’s longtime fans or simply appreciate well-drawn characters in well-told tales, you won’t want to miss this event.


Featured Book: A TANGLED TREE, MY FATHER’S PATH TO IMMORTALITY by Aiyannna Sezak-Blatt

SheVille.org proudly announces the release of Aiyanna Sezak-Blatt’s book, A Tangled Tree, My Father’s Path to Immortality, published by Logosophia Books. 
 

 

A Tangled Tree explores the story of three generations, as written by a daughter eager to understand her family’s history, while searching to accept her father’s eccentricity, beauty, rage and nomadic existence.  

You are invited to celebrate this special event!  Aiyanna will be hosting a reading and Book Launch on Saturday, June 3rd, at 7 p.m., at Malaprop’s Bookstore and Cafe, in downtown Asheville. There will be wine, and a sweet, honey-infused delight for all!

All are welcome to attend a Book Reading and Community Discussion at Congregation Beth Israel on Sunday, June 11th at 5 p.m. She will also be hosting an additional reading at Firestorm Books on Sunday, June 25th at 6 p.m.  All events are free & open to the public. 

From the Holocaust to the present day, A Tangled Tree follows the echo of tragedy as it ripples across the surface of a family. It is the story of a daughter who dives in search of silent, swallowed stones, those ingested generations ago, passed down from mother, to father, to child. It is a story that weaves through time and space, charting the epic, beautiful and complex journey of a family’s profound and tangled tree of life.  

A Tangled Tree, My Father’s Path to Immortality begins in the summertime, as Aiyanna follows her father Moshe on their big adventures; living on a nude beach on Kauai, chasing the Grateful Dead in an old milk truck, offering prayers to the Wailing Wall, lighting candles in the Shabbas House in Massachusetts, which is always their base. Twelve years later and after years of distance, Moshe arrives at her door, barefoot, with a beard to his chest, a sage of Judah adorned in fine Indian silk. They have reunited with a shared vision: To record his life story and memoir.
 
Born as a Polish Jew on the run from the Nazi invasion launching World War II, Moshe and his family barely escape the oncoming Holocaust. They find refuge on a kolhoz in Russia, return to Poland to encounter their deepest grief, move to a settlement in Israel, and eventually immigrate to Toronto. Despite his poverty and against the odds, Moshe becomes an academic, a Harvard professor, psychologist and rabbi. But by the age of 30, something inside him shifts, and he reaches for more.
 
During the psychedelic intrigue of the ’70s, he turns to a healer named Salvador, a man who gives him his first taste of L.S.D. in a cathartic ritual. He travels to India, where a mystic named Osho introduces him to the love that heals. Across the world he seeks healing, traveling on an ever-morphing spiritual journey.
 
Moshe fathers six children with five women. Aiyanna is his fourth, born out of wedlock to astrologer with many names. Moshe’s epic personality, wisdom, stories, and memories suddenly collide into Aiyanna’s life, filing her one-bedroom apartment, where they record together for a month, fighting, laughing, cooking dinners, ultimately rebuilding their lost relationship. When Moshe leaves, Aiyanna is left with a lifetime of pages to be written.
 
But the book she writes is far from the reflection Moshe expected. Aiyanna’s life experiences stand beside his; she writes of her siblings, their mothers, and the tangled nest of contention, love and disconnection between them all. From this portrayal, Moshe feels both betrayed and deeply wounded, confirmed that all women are only destined to hurt him.
 
A Tangled Tree is more than a memoir. It tells two conflicting but inseparable truths, painting a dynamic portrait of a man, of his parents’ miraculous escape, of the six children he fathered, and of a daughter determined to tell their story, and carry it forward until the end.    

“In beautifully clear-eyed prose, Aiyanna Sezak-Blatt plumbs the complexities of her bond with a brilliant, unsettled father. Their story leaps across continents and generations to map a branching history of pain, betrayal, and devotion. Moshe Blatt is a hypnotic character—wolf and wise man, adorable and infuriating—but his daughter’s quest to  understand her heritage is just as mesmerizing.” Leni Zumas, author of The Listeners.

 
Signed copies of A Tangled Tree are available from the author at aiyannasezakblatt.com
 
A Tangled Tree will be available in select independent bookstores and libraries starting June 1st, 2017.

Featured Book & CD: TOWARD the CLEARING by Jean Cassidy

Jean describes her poetry as “a choreography of words” as she joins her poetry with musical accompaniment. Her poetry book includes a CD of the poems accompanied by oboe, english horn, flute, piano, fretless banjo, violin, and balafon in the final product that is a beautiful collaboration with regional musicians and readers. Jean’s work has previously been published in the Great Smokies Review, the Online Publication of the Great Smokies Writing Program in Asheville, North Carolina. 

In Ordinary Time        Click to hear Susan Shinn read the poem with piano accompaniment by Lytingale


When I Think About Giving Up Writing

Cover Photo: photo courtesy of the author

by Teri Vlassopoulos in Catapult Magazine

I was happy raising my kid, living my life without worrying about writing.
 

We’re two years into my daughter’s life and we still don’t quite have a bedtime routine. It skips around depending on so many variables, and while she’s a good sleeper once she’s actually asleep, getting there is more of a process than a routine. Often by the time she’s out, I am too, having drifted off in the dark along with her.  


UNC Asheville’s Great Smokies Writing Program Announces New Additions to its Spring 2017 Lineup

UNC Asheville’s Great Smokies Writing Program (GSWP) has added new workshops with new faculty to its spring semester lineup of workshops for local writers of all levels. Joining Tommy Hays, Megan Shepherd, Heather Newton, Katherine Soniat and other popular GSWP faculty, will be newcomers Meta Commerse of Story Medicine Asheville, and Dale Neal, formerly of Asheville Citizen-Times. Classes in fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry and more will be offered in community locations in Asheville, Hendersonville and Burnsville. Classes range from five to 15 weeks.


Featured Book WHOSE NAMES HAVE SLIPPED AWAY – 2016 poems by Kathy Nelson

 

Finishing Line Press announces the publication of Whose Names Have Slipped Away, a chapbook of poems by Kathy Nelson.

Whose Names Have Slipped Away, published by Finishing Line Press, is poet Kathy Nelson’s second chapbook collection of poems. The poems in this collection are meditations on nature observed through the lens of relationship and through the universal experience of impermanence.

Poet Tina Barr says that “Kathy Nelson’s work ministers to the deep places within us; she explores difficult interpersonal arenas with conviction and courage.” Editor and poet Nancy Dillingham calls Kathy Nelson’s poems “brilliant distillations of moments in nature … (that) mirror, and become metaphor for, the eternal struggles between daughters and mothers.”

Kathy Nelson is a poet living in Asheville, NC. The music of words has enthralled her from the beginning. Although she has advanced degrees in several disciplines, including literature, engineering, and theology, and has worked in widely varying fields, including teaching, telecommunications, and hospice chaplaincy, poetry has been the thread through all of them. She has felt both fed and ignited by the poetry of Jane Hirschfield, Marie Howe, Ellen Bryant Voigt, Wendell Berry, Tina Barr and many others. Like many poets, Kathy finds that writing is a way of integrating and understanding her experience and is, therefore, essential. Her poems have appeared in numerous print and online journals.

The cover art for Ms. Nelson’s new book features a photograph taken by her father in the 1960s.

Finishing Line Press is a poetry publisher based in Georgetown, Kentucky. In addition to the Chapbook Series, it publishes the New Women’s Voices Series and sponsors the Finishing Line Press Open Chapbook Competition. Finishing Line Press and editor Leah Maines were featured in both the 2001 and 2002 Poet’s Markets.

Publication Date: October, 2016

To order online, go to http://wwwfinishinglinepress.com.

Or, you may order by mail ($14.99 plus $2.99 shipping, check or money order):

Finishing Line Press PO Box 1626  Georgetown KY 40324  finishingbook@aol.com  859-514- 8360

You can also contact the author by email at nelsonkathye@gmail.com, or  visit her website at http://kathynelsonwriter.com.


Asheville Authors - 50 Women writers

Featured Book : A NEW WOMEN’S ANTHOLOGY by 50 Asheville Authors

A Great Gift Idea

Two of Mountain Made’s most popular authors, Celia H. Miles and Nancy Dillingham, are co-editors and contributors of a new anthology by 50 women writers entitled It’s All Relative: Tales from the Tree – celebrating the lives of women and their connections with their families. Visit us on the web or come on down to the Mountain Made Art Gallery  

Monday – Saturday 10AM – 6PM
Sunday 12PM – 5PM
1 Page Ave, ste 123, Asheville NC


A Reading List For The Spirit

Spirituality and Health magazine has assembled its picks for the Best Books of the past year. Among them you will find reflections on mortality, explorations of depression, and insights from authors from a wide range of traditions. Some of the books examine the mind body connection for better mental health. One suggests that creating your own spiritual biography may help you recognize the times you’ve already brushed up against grace in your life. Check out the diverse selection here. { read more }


Grateful Steps Foundation & Publishing House

What Are Grateful Steps?

The name “Grateful Steps” emerges from a life of witnessing miracles and experiencing great love of family and friends. As the world evolves, people are increasingly aware of the power of gratitude. It is a way of being in the world, a way that reminds us to take things “one step at a time” and to be grateful for every step we are able to take, even through the most challenging landscape.

Who Are We?

Grateful Steps is a nonprofit publisher of all voices, all faiths, all cultures. We have a Christian philosophy but we are not a religious publisher. We are here to help others tell their stories, rather than get other people to live ours. The first title we published, in fact, was a novel about the troubled romance between a Jewish woman and Muslim man, The Other Half of My Soulby Bahia Abrams. Being an independent publisher means carrying the responsibility of amplifying as many voices as we can. For this reason, Grateful Steps considers all writers (provided a work is not rooted in hatred toward any one group of people) and helps them bring their book in excellent form into the world. Some books come to us ready to go. Others take years to find their fully imagined state. Grateful Steps editors work with authors until the books are the best possible reflection of the creative spirit in the author and in the living world. Visit our online store to see our wonderful books.  Visit our Website:  Grateful Steps

 


Featured Book: KALEIDOSCOPE by Tina Barr

The latest and perfectly named book of poems by Tina Barr, Kaleidoscope, carries the reader through thievery and wonder, devotion and sin, sickness and love, and from Tennessee to Turkey, in a rhythmical display of poetic vision. Barr plays words like music. The very tempo of that music, gears that unfold the tight weave of language threaded throughout, surprises the reader’s expectations with the breadth that Barr achieves from her palette of words. (Reviewed by Vanessa Loh)   Go to: Kaleidoscope Paperback/Amazon


Jane Hirshfield — photo by Curt Richter

Writers’ Almanac Interview with Jane Hirshfield

Welcome to The Writer’s Almanac Bookshelf, where you’ll find highlighted interviews of poets heard on the show.

Your new collection of essays, Ten Windows: How Great Poems Transform the World, and your latest volume of poems, The Beauty, both came out earlier this year. Were you working on these books simultaneously? Does writing about poetry affect the writing of the poems themselves? 

Thinking about poems — how they work, what they do, and why we need what they alone can do — is a lifelong pleasure for me. It brings a kind of intimate knowledge that can’t help but influence how a person then writes. Attention alters what it touches. But for me as a poet, this happens only in subterranean and indirect ways. Continue reading


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