So not only did you teach me about writing memoir, you also taught me about reading and thinking about how others write memoir. Thank you so much! Rebecca
Showing posts with label Classes at Writers Circle. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Classes at Writers Circle. Show all posts

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Writers Circle around the Table - images from the past ten years

My dear departed friend and neighbor, Ginny Walsh, Barbara Gabriel, Staci Bell around the table in the early days

Scott Owens, prolific and talented poet from Hickory NC taught here many times. We hope to have him again.   
Scott has a new poetry collection, Sky Full of Stars and Dreaming that I recommend. It includes some poems from his earlier books and new poems as well. His poetry is heartfelt and relatable to anyone who has empathy for suffering in our world. Sometimes I cry and sometimes I smile when reading his words, but I always enjoy them.  Read one of his poems here. 

A very popular writing instructor, Steven Harvey, an English professor at Young Harris College who is now retired. His students at Writers Circle loved him. Maybe he will teach for Writers Circle again one day. He has written many books and my favorite is his memoir, The Book of Knowledge and Wonder, a memoir about the suicide of his mother published by Ovenbird Books as part of the "Judith Kitchen Select" series.

At this class we had a man attend. Gene was working on his first book and now he has written his third.
Front right, Jo Carolyn Beebe is a delightful writer of historical fiction. 

Michelle Keller taught classes on genealogy. We all learned so much. She has found that she and I are distant cousins because we both have an ancestor descended from Francis Posey who came to this country when it was being settled.

From 2010 until 2020, we enjoyed meeting and learning together at my studio
The students became my friends and the instructors became friends that I cherish today. 

Who knows what the future holds with this virus crippling our country and the entire world, but maybe we can once again have people gather around my table and leave with a smile and a feeling that they can write that book, that poem, or article they always wanted to write. 

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Writers’ Night Out Announces 2018 Schedule

Karen Paul Holmes began Writers' Night Out in Blairsville several years ago and it is one of my favorite literary events in our area. She has created another outstanding schedule of readers for this year. I am excited, of course, that Estelle Rice and I are on this schedule. We will read in November from our soon to be released book, Paws, Claws, Hooves, Feathers and Fins, Stories and Poems about Our Pets and Other Creatures. 

Writers’ Night Out begins its eighth season on April 13 and continues the second Friday of the month through November. Featured readers present their work at 7 p.m., and an open microphone follows, where audience members can share three minutes of their own poetry or prose. The event is free and open to the public and takes place at the Union County Community Center in Blairsville, GA.

The 2018 schedule of featured readers from North Carolina and Georgia

April 13: Mike James and Michael Walls
May 18: Jennifer Lux and Rupert Fike
June 8: Michelle Castleberry and Karen Paul Holmes
July 13: Joan Howard and Jane Simpson
Aug 10: Kimberly Simms and Mary Ricketson
Sept 14: Robert Kendrick and Janice Moore
Oct 12: Danielle Hanson and Loren Leith
Nov 9: Glenda Beall and Estelle Rice

April reader, Mike James, is the author of eleven poetry collections. His most recent books include: Crows in the Jukebox (Bottom Dog, 2017), My Favorite Houseguest (FutureCycle, 2017), and Peddler’s Blues (Main Street Rag, 2016.) 

His work has appeared in over 100 magazines throughout the country in such places as Tar River Poetry, Soundings East, and Laurel Review. He has also been active as an editor for The Kentucky Review, Autumn House Press, and his own Yellow Pepper Press. After years spent in South Carolina, Missouri, Pennsylvania, and Georgia, he now makes his home in Chapel Hill, NC with his large family and a large assortment of cats. 

 James will also teach a poetry class on April 14 at Writers Circle in Hayesville, NC. For more information, visit . (see the studio schedule)

Michael Walls has had poetry published in a variety of journals and magazines including The New York Quarterly, South Carolina Review, Atlanta Review, Chattahoochee Review, Poetry East, The Midwest Quarterly and others. 

His chapbook is The Blues Singer and his full-length collection is Stacking Winter Wood (Kelsay Books/Aldrich Press, 2017). His poems and articles have also appeared in law reviews and journals. He is a retired labor lawyer who now spends his time working as a volunteer on environmental and other issues, hiking, hanging out with friends and family, writing poems and letters to the editor, and listening to rock and roll, blues and jazz. He spends time in Atlanta and the North Georgia Mountains.

Writers’ Night Out is sponsored by North Carolina Writers’ Network-West. The Union County Community Center is located at Butternut Creek Golf Course at 129 Union County Recreation Rd., Blairsville, Georgia 30512, off Highway 129 near the intersection of US 76, phone (706) 439-6092.

Food is available for purchase in The View Grill, but please arrive by 6 pm to get served.  For more information on Writers’ Night, contact Karen Holmes at (404) 316-8466 or

Friday, December 27, 2013

What will 2014 bring?

We will soon begin a new year.

Looking back on 2013, we have enjoyed the many writers and poets who have come through our doors this year. Joan, a student at Writers Circle said, "You have brought us so many good poets that we would not have been exposed to if it were not for Writers Circle."
That is our purpose  - to bring excellent writing instructors here to this area because we can't all travel long distances to classes and workshops in other cities. We keep our fees reasonable, but offer teachers enough to make the trip worthwhile for them 

This area is jam-packed with experienced published and non-published writers. Often we overlook what is in our own back yard. We don't want that to happen here.  We provide the opportunity for our local writers to teach what they have learned in their studies of poetry and prose. 
Around our table we give instruction to those beginning poets and writers who have not yet made the step to publishing their work. No one should ever be fearful of what they might encounter at this studio. We are non-competitive. We encourage each other and we give constructive feedback, in a gentle manner. 

The coffee pot is ready and some goodies are on the table. Ice tea is in the fridge.

We hope you will come and take a class with us in 2014. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Congratulations, Barbara!

Writers Circle student and Netwest member, Barbara Gabriel's poem Covenant has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Scott Owens, editor of Wild Goose Poetry Review.

I feel like a matchmaker. Barbara met Scott at one of his workshops at Writers Circle Studio. Her poetry impressed him, I believe. She submitted her work to Wild Goose and it was published. 

I am delighted Scott sees this outstanding poem and poet as worthy of nomination for a Pushcart Prize. Of course, both Scott and Barbara are winners in my book.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Saturday workshop with Scott Owens

It was lively here this weekend. Our guest instructor, Scott Owens, highly published poet, teacher, speaker, and editor of Wild Goose Poetry Review, arrived on Friday afternoon for his reading at Writers Night Out, held in Hiawassee, GA at Mountain Perk. We made him comfortable in our guest room overnight, and Scott was up at 5:00 a.m. quietly enjoying his self-made breakfast.

I warned him I am not an early riser, and he would have to fend for himself with cereal, fruit and juice, if he wanted breakfast before 8:00 a.m..

The enthusiastic poets and writers who had registered for his three hour workshop arrived with questions and were eager to hear Scott speak. One of them told me she felt this was one of the best workshops she had taken. Although she has been writing for many years, she picked up constructive tips on writing poetry and essays.

I was unable to go to Writers Night Out, and I missed the NCWN West picnic this year where Scott was the guest speaker, but I'm sure our local area writers enjoyed the priviledge of meeting him and learning from him.

Writers Circle became somewhat of a writing retreat for Scott as he had the place to himself for one day and one evening. All I asked of him was to feed Tiger, the resident cat.

Tiger, resident cat

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Date Change for Creative Writing classes by Glenda Beall

The dates for my creative wrting classes beginning September 27 have to be changed a bit. We will have no class on Tuesday, October 4. We will make up that class at the end of the session on a day that fits the schedule of all students.

If you have not sent in your registration for this class, send a check made to Writers Circle and mail to  581 Chatuge Lane, Hayesville, NC 28904.

We will cover beginning elements of  fiction first two weeks, Poetry, second two weeks and  non-fiction the last weeks of the class.
Email to receive a schedule of class titles.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Social Media? Who Needs It?

Ronda Birtha talks about her upcoming class on Social Media to be held at Writers Circle, 581 Chatuge Lane, in Hayesville, NC 28904

A pre-class prep talk to ease the nerves of non-tech-savvy attendees. This is not a technology class!
Overview: 3 hours.
1. Introduction to Social Media for marketing (1 hr)
Why Social Media is Necessary for your Marketing Strategy?
What do you mean, ‘be social’?
2. What you need to Start and Maintain a Blog (1hr)
3. Getting started with Facebook (1hr)

What kind of writer are you? Is your satisfaction complete when you pen your last word, or make your final edit? Are you the kind of writer that is completely satisfied with having friends and family read your manuscript? Or do you want more? Do you want people to talk about your book (favorably, of course)? Word of mouth has always been a powerful tool, but let’s consider how it works today.
When someone has some juicy information, a valuable recommendation, meaningful insight (or, not so meaningful), even a scathing review, it is talked about, not just in someone’s ear, but online, in the powerful and pervasive social media context. If you want people to talk about your book then that is where you have to get the conversation going: in the social media pool.
If you are concerned about getting started because of having limited computer knowledge or experience, rest assured, the most difficult part of engaging in social media is the commitment you will need to stick with it. The first word in Social Media Marketing, is, indeed, Social, and that is where our classroom conversation will begin.
What does it mean to be social, how does one become social? The answers to these often-neglected, yet highly important questions, will help fortify your nerve and strengthen your resolve to stick with your social media marketing efforts.
Technologically speaking, what do you need at minimum to start?
Access to a computer that has an internet connection (preferably more than dial-up). Computer access will not be needed for this class, however, so breathe easy (at least for now).
I don’t want to oversimplify the process or the methods, especially since many aspects of social media marketing are still very much an art form and not a science (like medicine), and are prone to surprise and confound us. But if we remember that many things in life surprise and confound us, we will not inflate our expectations. There is no magic button that will set everything up for us. There is no secret preference that we have to click on to make people visit our site, comment on our blog, respond to our Facebook status updates. It takes work, and effort … like most worthwhile things.
So bring a positive attitude and a pen to take notes.

Ronda L. Birtha is a freelance photographer, writer and social media consultant. She can be contacted at Her photography can be viewed at

The class on Social Media will be held May 14. 10:30 - 1:30 PM.
E-mail Glenda Beall for registration information:

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Registration begins February 1 for Spring Writers Circle Classes

Estelle Rice - March 12 at Writers Circle in Hayesville, NC
We have several instructors lined up for Spring Classes at Writers Circle in Hayesville, NC.

March 12, at 10:30 a.m. Estelle Rice will kick off our second season at Writers Circle. Estelle’s classes are such fun because she digs deep to find new and exciting things to bring to her students. Registration begins February 1. contact:

Karen Holmes will teach two Sunday afternoons, the 19th and 26th of March. She will instruct us in Reading Out Loud. Writers often present their work at public readings. Part of Karen’s course includes videoing each student’s performance.
Glenda Beall will lead a six week course beginning 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, March 23 with following classes March 30, April 6, April 20, April 27 and May 4. Want to write memoir or family stories? Write for your grandchildren; write for a newsletter, stories to share at family reunions, or any place you want to share your writing. Prompts, tips and detail instruction on making your work grab the reader on the first page.

On April 31, we have a new instructor, JoAnn LoVerde-Dropp, who recently received her MFA in Creative Writing from Spalding University. She teaches ESL classes in Cobb County, Georgia and is the poetry workshop facilitator for the Georgia Writers Association in Kennesaw, Georgia. She will teach poetry memoir. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it?

In May, Ronda Birtha will begin a series of three Saturday classes on Using Social Media to Promote Your Writing.
On May 4, Saturday, Rosemary Royston will hold a poetry class. More information later.
Michelle Keller will teach three classes on Wednesdays, June 15, 22, 29. She brings her knowledge of genealogy and writing to the students who want to write true stories about their ancestors.
Paul Donovan plans more Spiritual Writing classes to be held at Writers Circle. More information forthcoming when the schedule is complete.

Email Glenda Beall @ for registration information.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Photos from Writing Class with Mary Mike Keller

Mary Mike Keller instructs her students in how to research their ancestors and then turn the facts into an entertaining and informative story. Mary Mike is in the process of writing a book on her ancestors beginning with the first immigrant to enter this country back in the 1500s. Most of her research is done online.

Students, Vicki, David, Barbara and Dean listen intently to Mary Mike Keller, instructor at Writers Circle last week. This was a class with three sessions and everyone voiced their enjoyment of the series.

The next class at Writers Circle will be held on Tuesday, June 8. Glenda Beall is instructor for a class, Why Do We Write, and students will be writing in class and getting feedback on their work.