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 memoir. Show all posts
Showing posts with label memoir. Show all posts

Saturday, October 2, 2021

The crucial ingredient in memoir is people.

William Zinsser says the crucial ingredient in memoir is people.

You must summon back the women and men and children who notably crossed your life. What makes them memorable?

Why do we remember some things and not others? Why do we remember certain people in our past? 

When we write our memories we learn why they stay with us, why we must explore them.

I don't have to look hard to find something or someone to write about. The people who notably crossed my life include family members, four brothers and two sisters, a mother and a father, four sisters-in-law, two brothers-in-law, and a number of nieces and nephews. Then there is my husband and his family.

In my family history, Profiles and Pedigrees, The Descendants of Thomas Charles Council (1858-1911) my main characters were my paternal grandparents, Sally and Tom, and their ten children. With those children came spouses and their children. Each family had a historian who shared the life stories of his or her parents. It was interesting to me what each person remembered. The stories were not all the same because what one remembers is not the same as what another remembers. One of my male cousins described the automobile his father drove and how impressed he was with the car his uncle owned. His memories came from his childhood, and I have found that automobiles often bring back memories when we begin to write about our lives. 

Think about your first car. How did it make you feel? What did it look like? What make and model was it? Did you do something special the first day you had it? Who were the people who rode in your car? Write about your adventures and travels in your first car? What memories come back to you when you think about that car? How did it smell? Did you wash your car or have it washed? What did you keep in your car all the time? Did you inherit your first car? Was it brand new off the lot?

My father, Coy Lee Council, and his first car. We heard stories about this car and his friends. This was likely one of the first automobiles built, but he didn't buy it new. He learned quickly that he had lots of friends until he had to repair the car or buy a new tire. Then those boys were hard to find. He is one of the characters in my life story.

My husband, Barry, liked sports cars. We rode in this one when we were young marrieds.
 Barry was particular about the cars he owned. All of his life he enjoyed convertibles and his last car had a sunroof because I didn't want my hair blowing as it did in a convertible.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Why Do You Write?

Bobbie Christmas, editor and writer, published this article on LinkedIn

Why Do You Write? is a good question to ask yourself. Bobbie answers this question and tells us what we should do according to who we write for, who we want to read our words, where we hope to publish, and what we want to do if we publish a book.

Students gather around the table for a class in my studio before COVID

I have scheduled my next writing class for September 27 - November 1, Mondays 2:30 - 4:30 PM.

The classes will be on Zoom as my last several classes have been. The Institute for Continuing Learning will sponsor the class. Visit to see when registration begins for this class. 

Check the calendar for all 2021 fall classes. No matter where you live if you can get Internet coverage and can connect with, you are welcome to join locals in my region of the Appalachian Mountains in my class. 

Monday, May 24, 2021

Last Class for Now

Tuesday will be the last of a series of classes I have been teaching for the Institute of Continuing Learning at Young Harris College, Young Harris, Georgia.

I hope to teach again in the fall and I hope to teach online. This has been a very good experience for me and for my students, some who live long distances from here. It is very satisfying to see my students grow in their writing and enjoy it as well. This group has been the most dedicated class of the three I taught this year. 

I saw a conversation between Dr. Fauci who is 80 years old and Jane Brody, a woman his age who works in public health. They both said they have no plans to retire and enjoy what they do. Dr. Fauci said he takes long walks every day and eats properly to stay in shape. He said at one point last year he was only getting about four hours of sleep at night, but his wife reminded him that this pandemic was like a marathon and will be going on a while, so he had to take care of himself.

Many men and women who are way past retirement age still go to work every day and do a great job. I wish the media would concentrate on their stories. 
We should not write off a person once he is past retirement age because most of the older generation I know are leading active lives. Dr. Fauci said when he does retire, he plans to write a memoir and also articles. I look forward to his memoir where he can tell what really happened during 2020.

So many people are writing their stories now. Memoirs are the top sellers after romance novels. 
I'd better get busy with my own book. And I hope my students will continue to write all summer and join me again in class next fall.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Make your memoir entertaining

When writing memoir or creative nonfiction the writer must think about her audience.

While writing about her life, she wants to be sure to entertain the reader. If the story is not entertaining or interesting enough to grab the reader, the memoir, which takes a long time and much work to create, will end up on a high shelf where no one thinks about it or reads it.

How does the writer do that? How does she make her life stories entertaining?
She uses the elements of fiction that draw readers to novels.

How to Hold Your Reader

Include dialogue in memoir. Readers don't skip dialogue. If they get bored with too much narration or description that goes on and on, they skip to the paragraphs of dialogue. Write in scenes as in a play or movie. Interaction between characters. Include action when possible.

Just as we write fiction, we want to grab our readers on the first page, in the first paragraph. Recently I heard editors say they choose a manuscript to publish by reading the first page.

Beginnings are important but first, get the story down. I teach my students to write true stories that could become part of their memoir, but the purpose of my classes is to learn the craft of writing. What is written in class might not end up in the final manuscript, but in the process the student is learning the best way to write his story.

Glenda Beall, 6 Sessions, Tuesday, April 20 – May 25, 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm, 
Cost: $20 

In today's busy world, grandparents seldom have the opportunity to spend quality time with their grandchildren, to tell them stories about what life was like in the twentieth century. Younger generations will not learn in history books what we can tell them. Did you grow up on a farm or in a city? Did you serve in the military and when? In this class, you will be encouraged to remember the important events of your life and write those memories in an entertaining and informative manner. 

Glenda C. Beall writes and teaches writing from her home in Hayesville, NC. She is the author of three books and has published poetry, memoir, and fiction in numerous journals and magazines. She is the program coordinator for NCWN-West, a program of the North Carolina Writers' Network. For over twenty years she has taught senior adults to write about their lives for their families. In early 2020, she learned to teach online and enjoys seeing her students on her screen. T

Click on this link for registration information:

Friday, July 19, 2019

In my family stories, I write about my parents, Coy and Lois Council.

Excerpt from my memoir:
My older sister, June, was born 1924. She entered this world at the home of our grandparents, Willie and Lula Robison where Mother waited for Daddy to send for her. Times were hard in the early 1920s for my family and many more. The economy of the United States was doing great, but only for certain people. As is often the case, the stock market was booming, but middle and low income families struggled.

Daddy, Coy Council, had planned to wait until he had enough money saved before asking Lois to marry him, but he married at the age of 23 because he could not bear to be away from his beloved Lois any longer. In letters he wrote to my mother, it is obvious he was afraid she would find someone else. He was jealous of anyone she saw when he was not present.

Daddy had never worked anywhere but Pelham Manufacturing Company, (textile mill). He started there when he was ten years old, soon after his father died. At times the Pelham mill would close. Then Daddy, a young single man, took the train up to Thomaston, Georgia where he worked as a weaver at the mill there and rented a room at a boarding house. He barely made enough to pay his board, buy cigarettes and send money home to his widowed mother. He hated the work, but it was all he knew. 

On the positive side, he could always find work because between 1800 and 1910, cotton mills sprang up all over the south and middle Georgia had two or three in the same county. I find it interesting to see what fabrics were made in each mill. After the Civil War, the production of cotton duck, a canvas-like cloth, dominated production for use in ship sails, tents, and covered wagons. Duck gained new value as an industrial fabric in the booming new rubber tire business for automobiles in the early twentieth century. Osnaburg is a name I remember hearing Mother say when she looked at fabric in a store. It was one of those produced in the early 20th century.

My oldest brother, Ray, was the only child not born in Georgia. He was born in a tiny town, Rubonia, Florida where Mother and Daddy lived while my father worked with Uncle Charlie on his farm in Palmetto. Daddy also worked nights at an ice plant to earn enough to pay rent and feed his small family. In the days before refrigerators and ice machines, ice plants delivered ice to homes and businesses. It was hard work. Even in 1942, homes without electricity had an Ice Box on the back porch where a big block of ice would be placed to keep food cold for a couple of days until the ice man brought another block.

Little Ray became my father’s pride and joy. He had hoped for a son, and when that boy was born, in 1926, Coy Council burst his buttons with pride. The first-born son has long been a source of pride and joy to fathers. That son was expected to carry on the lineage of the father. Ray was, of course, named for his father. Coy Ray Council went by the name of Ray.

Little did anyone know what this precious child would mean to his parents, his siblings and to countless others whose lives he touched.

A block of ice carried with tongs delivered to someone's Ice Box

The Icehouse Job, 1926

After working 9 hours in the hot Florida sun,
he came home to eat a meal with her and his kids.
She told him how she wished he could stay with her
and rest, let her rub his back. I get scared here without you.
But he said he had to pay the rent, put food on the table.
As the kids were tucked into bed, he climbed
into his old truck, headed to work.

It should have been a relief after the sun burned
his skin to dark brown leather, but he wore his ragged
jacket and a cap with flaps over his ears
as if he had walked into dead of winter in Wisconsin.

Alone in the quiet he wondered how long could he go on
working two jobs, getting little sleep.
His back, tired from plowing mules all day,
his hands cold and chapped, he chopped
the fifty pound blocks. With both hands he clamped
the tongs that griped the slippery squares, swung his shoulders
tossing his burden up on the platform, over and over
until the clock said midnight, quitting time.

He climbed into bed too tired to bathe.
Her hand reached through the night,
touched his face. He slept but she lay awake
thinking of going home to Georgia, seeing her folks,
hearing him laugh again, and tell his stories to the kids.

                                                   Dedicated to my parents, Coy and Lois Council

Glenda Beall
August 6, 2015

Monday, April 9, 2018

Institute for Continuing Learning - Young Harris College, Young Harris, Georgia

If you can, please join me when I teach a weekly class May 3 through May 24, 3:15 - 5:45 p.m.for the Institute of Continuing Learning.

Young Harris College, Young Harris, GA
4 Sessions, Thursdays
May 3 through May 24,
3:15 - 5:45 p.m.
Cost $18  Visit this site to register for this class.

 Classes will be held at the Towns County Fire Station 6,
 441 Sunnyside RD, Hiawassee, GA

Entertain and Enlighten your Readers with your Life Stories

How do we begin to write about our lives? Can we use dialogue, stories passed down from parents, and do we have to prove they are true? In today’s world where family members often live long distances from each other, it is difficult to share the interesting lives we have lived. There seems to be no time to sit on the porch and talk about the past. But we can still share our life experiences with our children, grandchildren and future generations by writing them now. In this class we will write entertaining as well as enlightening short pieces and receive feedback from our classmates.  

Contact ICL for registration information

Friday, September 30, 2016

A Memorable Trip Brought Back by a Blogger's photographs

 Today I was reminded of when Barry and I and Gay and Stu went to Alaska in 1985. A vacation I will never forget. 

The four of us took many trips together, and our cruise to Alaska will forever live in my mind and heart. Not only the scenery of Alaska, but our few days in San Francisco before we boarded the Princess ship, made me feel I had left this world and gone on to a magnificent setting where I might never want to return. We toured the coast of California south of San Francisco, ate our lunch perched on a cliff above the Pacific, and listened to the surf pounding the rocks below us.
I wrote a poem about that experience.

 We Celebrate our 25th at Big Sur

High above the scene,

we picnicked on cheese and wine.

The wind swept up the cliff

and kissed my face with droplets

from the great Pacific which crashed

on rocks one hundred feet below.

Wind tossed our words up to the gulls

who shrieked them back at us.

The day, dazzling in its brilliance,

refreshed our love, not young, now renewed.

We dreamed, made promises,

that perfect day - a perfect place,

away from all the world. ---- by Glenda Council Beall


I stumbled upon an Internet site today where my memories of those days in Alaska, seeing the Mendenhall Glacier and rafting on the Mendenhall River popped back into my mind. I could hear us laughing, the water splashing all over us, Barry in his red down jacket, his arm around me, assuring my safety should I have any trouble staying on the bumpy raft.

We stopped somewhere along the way and our guides brought out champagne which we drank from paper cups. They served us smoked salmon on crackers, and my sister says she has never had any smoked salmon as good as that we had standing on a sandbar on a cold damp day in Alaska with tall evergreens towering over us. Our young guides pointed out an eagle's nest way up in the top of a tree, then we saw the eagles soaring in the gray sky.

The writer and photographer here: posts photos and then writes about them as he walks and explores with his dog, Aki. What a place to live. I know it must be extremely cold in winter, but even then, there is this unspoiled beauty as far as the eye can see. I plan to return to this website often to see his photo essays and remember.

Do you have a favorite vacation that sticks in your mind? Tell us about it.

Friday, September 16, 2016

MEMOIR - where do we start and what do we include?

As I teach my memoir class at the junior college in Murphy, NC each week, I am delighted to see how much my students improve in their writing and in seeing what is good and what needs work in the writing of their fellow students.

In this advanced class we are discussing finding the theme of our memoir. It is easy to write just the facts of our lives. "I was born June 5, 1970 at 2:30 a.m. in Austin, Texas. I attended Marlin Elementary School. My mother was a nurse. My father worked for a moving company."

We can tell where we were born, the date and time and we can tell where we lived when we were in elementary school. It is easy to tell how many siblings we have and where they went to school. 

But the reader will quickly become bored if all we give are the facts. We want the stories of our lives, the truth as we remember it, and why the stories are important to us. In memoir we have the opportunity to reflect on our memories, our lives and write about our thoughts then and today. We ask ourselves why did this happen or why do I still remember this?

We write our true stories with elements of fiction such as plot, setting, characterization, action and dialogue. Dialogue is the part of a story that no one skips. We can't make dialogue carry the entire scene in our personal narrative, but we can use it to move the story along. 

Writing about my family, it is easy to use dialogue because I know each of my characters so well, I hear their voices in my ear. 

My story is unique as my family and my life are unique. No one else can tell my story like I can. Your story is also unique and you can tell it best. Begin now to leave the story of your life for the next generation and the next and the next. 

This is a prompt to start you writing your story: Think about a house where you lived when you were a child and draw that house showing rooms, porches, and yard on your paper. Imagine walking through that house and stopping in each room. What do you see? What do you hear or smell in that room? What would you touch or taste? Try to remember something that happened in that room or something you remember when you think about being in that room. Write about it. Get all your thoughts on the paper or on the screen and don't stop to correct anything. Corrections can be made after the entire story has flowed from your memory to your finger tips. 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

An Interview by Glenda C. Beall with Steven Harvey, essayist and author of The Book of Knowledge and Wonder, a memoir

Steve Harvey, author 
Steven Harvey is the author of three books of personal essays. A Geometry of Lilies, Lost in Translation, and Bound for Shady Grove. He has also edited an anthology of essays written by men on middle age called In a Dark Wood. His memoir The Book of Knowledge and Wonder, was recently published by Ovenbird Books. I appreciate him giving his time to answer a few questions for this interview. 

GCB: Steve, I’ve known you for more than twenty years and always admired your writing and your teaching. You were a poet and you are an essayist. How was writing a memoir different from writing your other books?

STEVE: All of my writing has a personal component, but the memoir required a different kind of digging. Armed with only a few vivid memories of my childhood, I was asking myself to reconstruct a past. I did have more than four hundred letters that covered all but the last year of the book, but they served primarily as a mnemonic evoking images, thoughts, memories, and events that I had not thought about in years.

It was intense, all this remembering. As usual, I wrote in the mornings and taught in the afternoons, but this was the only book of the many I’ve written that I could not leave back at the writer’s desk when I drove in to teach my students.

GCB: The story in this book is that of a little boy and his mother, and then it is the story of a man who discovers his mother many years after her suicide.

STEVE: Yes, and I think that is why the Peter Pan Story—of the lost boys in Never Never Land—was so important. The only time I became overtly emotional in the actual writing of the book is when I recreated the scene of Mary Martin as Peter Pan singing “Distant Melody” as a lullaby to the Lost Boys. There, the Lost Boy Peter, played by a woman, sings a lullaby that his mother sang to him. When I watched the clip on the screen of my computer the intertwined stories of boy and mother united in one actress seemed to recapitulate my attempt to collaborate with my mother in our story. When it was over my hand was on the screen.

Steven Harvey and his mother in 1952
GCB: Adults tend to keep children in the dark when a family tragedy happens. Do you think your father and grandparents did not talk about your mother’s death in an effort to protect you, to keep you from feeling the pain they suffered?

STEVE: I think that they were protecting me, but maybe trying to get some distance themselves from what had happened. It is awfully hard to carry that kind of thing around with you. I also think they were waiting for me to ask about it, but I was too busy putting the events behind me to do that. Part of the discovery of the last section of the book is how much of my time I spent shoving the memory away through withdrawal into solitary artistic activities such as playing guitar until my past was all but forgotten.

GCB: I felt your pain as a child who had to figure out how to suddenly handle the fact that your mother was gone and would not ever return even though you write about it with no self-pity. Do you think that all the years that have passed helped you deal with the pain you felt then? Was this pain buried so deeply inside you that it was difficult to open it up and feel it all again?

Steven with the Book of Knowledge, ten volumes beautifully bound, given to him by his parents.
STEVE: The experience of writing the book was intense, but not painful. My problem was that I had repressed almost everything. So writing the book was more about making discoveries—knowing and wondering as the title says—than about agonizing over the discoveries. When the emotions did come they were actually feelings of affection and love. I was grateful to feel anything for my mother and the boy I was. The emotions were the victory of the book.

GCB: I find it interesting that your grandmother talked openly with your wife, Barbara, about your mother’s death and gave her the letters on which you based much of your research for the book, but she did not talk to you even when you were an adult. Why do you think she did that?

STEVE: I don’t know. I suspect my grandmother was baffled that I did not ask. Barbara is easy to talk to. She’s curious and asks questions and is a great listener with a prodigious memory. She also writes wonderful, newsy letters and like my mother wrote regularly to my grandmother. In the end she was my grandmother’s closest confidante, I think.

GCB: Our audience is made up primarily of writers. I will try to ask the questions they would ask. How did you handle parts of your story that involved family members still living – your brother, for instance? Did you feel you had to leave out or change anything?

STEVE: There is no easy answer to this one. I wrote the book as honestly as I could, but when I was done I showed the manuscript to my brother. It was hard for him, he told me, but in the end he said he was glad that I wrote it all down and did not ask for any part to be changed. My stepmother is in her 80’s and I planned to show her the book, but she is having a rough time with her health now so I decided not to. These are just hard decisions that each writer has to make. There is no formula.

GCB: We know that my memory of an incident could be very different from the way another person would remember it. In memoir, we can only write what we remember or what we find to be true in our research. You had the letters your mother wrote to her mother and they paint a detailed picture of what she thought at the time. Did you enjoy reading the letters and did they bring back the past that you had forgotten?

STEVE: The letters were one half of a conversation I needed to have. I am extremely grateful that I had them. I found myself moved, delighted, sad, furious, and joyous by turns as I read them, but they were so direct and frank and detailed that they simply invited me in. My mother and I talked every day for nearly two years as she and I wrote the book together. Collaborators. They were an amazing gift.

Steve's most honest critic 

GCB: How much influence did Barbara have on your writing this book?

STEVE: Barbara is my source of information and the protector of my morning writing time. (She sleeps late in the morning which helps!) She is one of the most well-read people I know. I once heard her go book by book against Phillip Lopate when my writing friends and I had dropped out of the conversation. She held her own against one of America’s greatest readers. She is also my first reader and my most honest critic.

GCB: You have been a teacher and a writer for as long as I have known you. You have written a number of books, A Geometry of Lilies, Lost in Translation, and Bound for Shady Grove, edited a book of essays and published in other ways. How did you manage to be a participating father, husband and professor of English and find time to write?

STEVE: I don’t know! I write every morning because I can’t help myself.

GCB: Did you wait until you had retired from Young Harris College to write this memoir because you knew it would be taxing psychologically and physically with traveling back to the places you lived as a child and going to the place where she actually shot herself?

STEVE: No, I wrote the book during my last two years at the college--which was a pretty intense time since I also taught in an MFA program. The traveling happened to coincide with the AWP writer’s conference which was in Chicago that year, a lucky break.

GCB: We are told that we have to be honest and not be afraid to bleed on the page if we want to successfully reach our readers. We want them to feel something. What do you want your readers to feel when they read this book?

STEVE: I want them to register the sadness of the loss, yes, but also to feel the victory of the collaboration in a story that was almost miraculously reclaimed.

GCB: Your other books are different from this one even though the subjects are still personal. In what way was writing this book different for you? Did you have to reach deeper inside yourself or did you worry about protecting yourself from exposing too much emotion?

STEVE: My essays are more thematic than the memoir—they are personal, yes, but they use my life to explore an idea I care about. Since the memoir, I have happily returned to the essay, the most congenial of forms for me.

GCB: Finally, I know the late Judith Kitchens of Ovenbird Books was your publisher, a wonderful essayist herself. Did she have any input as to what was included and if so, how did she help you?

STEVE: I did get help on the book from writers who are friends of mine: Joe Mackall, Bob Root, and Tom Larson. Judith and I have been friends for a long time, but I had not worked with her in many years. We reunited at the Ashland MFA, where I teach, after I finished the book. She read and accepted my manuscript soon after that, and completed the forward, days before she died. She is a great spirit. We all miss her.

GCB: I read memoirs more than I read fiction these days and I think The Book of Knowledge and Wonder is one of the best I’ve read in many years. Thank you for this interview and I look forward to your teaching a class at Writers Circle in September.

STEVE: Thank you for giving me this opportunity to talk about the book. I look forward to the class as well.

Steven Harvey, his mother, and his little brother watching Peter Pan
See more photos from the book here

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

September Writing Series at Tri-County Community College -Register now

September 2016
Tuesdays, September 6 – October 11 

6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.     $35

Writing Your Life Stories for Your Family or for Publication

Our life stories are a precious legacy. Putting them in writing is a gift to all who know and love us—they can be treasured and enjoyed for generations to come. Facts bring us knowledge, but stories bring us wisdom.

If you are interested in writing family/personal life stories – those significant tales of adventure, transition, love, loss, and triumph, as well as the lovely everyday moments shared with loved ones from the past or the present, come learn specific tools and techniques to retrieve and record them.

Students will write a short piece each week. This class is structured for intermediate or advanced students who have completed at least one writing class. 12 hrs.

Instructor: Glenda C. Beall, published author and poet, experienced teacher and blogger. Owner/Director of Writers Circle Studio, Clay County Representative for NCWN West.

Contact Lisa Long at Tri-County Community College to register
(828) 835-4241

Reading by Glenda Beall - John C. Campbell Folk School - Thursday, September 22, 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Writing and Writers

Back row: Roger Carlson and MC Brooks
Front row: Dottie Wershing, Carol Gladders and Brenda Kay Ledford

In the photo above you see five of the eight students who were enrolled in my memoir writing class this fall at Tri-County Community College in Murphy, NC

Four of these students have taken my classes several times. It is inspiring to see the improvement each has made since that first class. Two of them published this summer. Roger submitted an op-ed piece to his local newspaper and it was accepted. MC Brooks submitted one of her family stories to an anthology, It's All Relative, Tales from the Tree, edited by Celia Miles and Nancy Dillingham. You can find MC's personal narrative on page 29. 

In this class all students were intermediate or advanced. When students come back again and again to take my classes, I consider it a great compliment to my skills and my ability to help them enjoy learning. I was once told that one of my greatest talents was creating an environment of safety and comfort that enabled new writers to share their poems or stories without fear. 

I know that is important because I have been that new writer, that new poet, who felt terrified when asked to read my work out loud to a group. I have been that person who was not sure if my writing had any promise. Sharing writing is a bit like handing off your first-born to a stranger and hoping he will handle her with love and care. 

I also know that even the most experienced, published writer still sweats out each new submission whether it is a short story or a manuscript for a book. No one wants to face rejection. Once I learned that, I became much stronger when faced with rejection of my work. We have to know that an editor's rejection is not personal and we must not have our feelings hurt. The rejection is probably because the work doesn't fit the editor or publisher's needs at the time. 

A beginning writer faces the challenge of submitting work with no previous publications on his resume'. He hopes an editor will read his story or essay and like  it enough to give him a chance. Today we hear that editors Google a writer's name first to  see if he has anything online that shows the editor that he will bring readers to the publication. That seems unfair. 

Some publishers, however, say they don't want to know what you have published, they want your writing to impress them and if it does,  it will be accepted. I wonder if that is the exception.

We write because we love it and sometimes because we can't not write. I know excellent writers and poets who don't care about seeing their work in a book other than for their family. Whether we publish our work or write for our own satisfaction, we write. But to have our work read and appreciated by other people is the goal of most writers. I hope to communicate with readers whether in my family essays, short stories, poetry or on this blog. 

I appreciate your reading my posts. I hope you enjoy them and I love to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment or send an email.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Writers' Night Out in Blairsville GA sponsored by NCWN West

Tomorrow night in Blairsville, GA at the Union County Community Building, Steven Harvey, author of the Book of Knowledge and Wonder, a memoir I recommend to anyone who likes to read about interesting people and their true stories, will be featured at Writers' Night Out.

Steve takes us on a search with him as he looks for and discovers the young mother who took her life when the author was only 11 years old. As he says, this is not a sad book, but is a book of wonder as he learns who this lovely woman was. He celebrates her in his book and we see how devastating mental illness can be, not just to the individual, but to those who love the afflicted person. 

The book is filled with photos that bring the reader right into the story.
Come early, at least by 6:00 p.m. if you plan to eat at the grill before the reading. And, remember, we have open mic. You can read for three minutes. Sign up at the door.
I hope to see you there!!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Write What You Like. Tuesdays at Tri-County Community College

Tri-county Community College

21 Campus Circle, Murphy, NC 28906

September 2- September 23 -- Tuesdays

6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m

Write What You Like: Fiction, Memoir, Articles – Fulfilling Writing Dreams & Goals, Creating New Writing, Revising & Polishing Your Writing:
  • This class is designed to help you fulfill your writing goals.
  • See what mistakes editors most often find in submissions and learn how to avoid them.
  • Gain the knowledge, inspiration and motivation you need to put your words on paper.
  • Each week writing prompts will generate material for new writing or further a piece in process.
  • Through examples of accomplished writers, you’ll learn techniques to aid you right where you are in the process.
  • You'll also get feedback on your work and learn revision tools.
  • Small class with interaction and feedback from teacher and other students

Instructor: Glenda C. Beall, published author and poet, experienced teacher and blogger. 
Owner/Director of Writers Circle Studio

Register now: Contact -Lisa Long
Director of Community Outreach
828) 835-4241

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Pat Davis, budding novelist, Gives Good Advice

I tell my students who self-publish books to find a good professional editor before they print their books. I tell them that no matter how much we have gone over the chapters in class or how well their best friend says you have done this book, don't waste all the time and energy you have put into the manuscript by publishing a book with errors or simply a book that doesn't transition well or flow properly.
My good friend, Pat Davis is a novelist and she says it best on her blog. Read her post before you publish your book. 

New Memoir by Nadine Justice

A new writer, Nadine Justice, heeded my advice and her memoir is a very well written book, I'm a Coal Miner's Daughter, But I Cain't Sang. See it on and read my review.

She says the most valuable thing she learned about publishing a book is that you don't want to work for a year or more to write a book and then publish it before it has been polished to perfection or as close as possible. I am so happy she heeded my advice. Her book is good reading and I recommend it.

Nadine Justice, author of I'm a Coal Miner's Daughter, But I Cain't Sang