Thursday, February 24, 2011

Coming October 1st

On October 1, 2011, in Rocky Mount, Virginia,  the Mountain Spirits Arts Festival will showcase and promote the rich cultural heritage of the people and their works in Franklin County and the surrounding region.

Many of the artisans, craftspeople, writers, and musicians who are invited to participate are from the Franklin County, but some are from surrounding counties and whose work contributes to the mountain culture.

I am the literary coordinator, responsible for selecting writers who live in the county and have recently published books, or who live in a nearby counties and whose writings contribute to Appalachian literature. I want the literary part of the festival to appeal to both readers and writers. Therefore, I've also invited some area writers groups to talk to any visitors who might be looking to join a writers group, and a publisher who publishes "Virginia books by Virginia authors."

I knew that space was limited, so—when  I compiled my list of authors to invite—I tried to stick to these criteria:

  • Books about local/regional/Blue Ridge history, culture, memoir (either commercially published or self-published).
  • Fiction/non-fiction (either commercially published or self-published) set in the Appalachian region.
  • Commercially published authors (either fiction or non-fiction) who live in Franklin County but whose book isn't necessarily about the area.
  • Authors who live in surrounding counties and have books of regional/Appalachian interest.

From 10 AM until 4 PM, the authors will be under a tent near the Franklin Center, which is just across the parking lot from the Franklin County Library. They will display and sell their books, chat with folks who stop by their tables, and answer questions about their books or about how they were published.

The Franklin Center, as seen from the library window.

Update: The authors' tent will now be in the parking lot next to Edible Vibe, which is at 315 Franklin Street, a block away from the library. The hospitality room for authors will be in the Franklin Center.

Another Update: We now have a full tent of authors. We will possibly start a waiting list for authors who meet the above criteria, with regional history at the top of the list.

I'll write more about specific authors or groups in future blog posts. Meanwhile, mark October 1, 2011, on your calendar. You don't want to miss what we hope will be an annual event.