With its regular concert activities on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the eastern panhandle’s Friends of Music organization is experimenting with technology to produce virtual concerts they’re calling “Musical Postcards,”
Arts & Entertainment
Whether or not you consider yourself an artist, there is no doubt that art touches your life. The arts tell our story, they are a beautiful legacy. Engaging people from an early age in the arts enhances their development by opening their eyes to different experiences, different voices, and uniquely personal ways for them to express their own dreams and visions.
When it comes to judging a book, titles can be just as deceitful as covers. With a title like F*ckface, one might expect Leah Hampton’s short story collection to be a brash set of tales rooted in hardscrabble Appalachia.
Ron Rash (1953) started out as a poet and short story writer in the ‘90s before he published his first novel, One Foot in Eden (2002) and the novel that catapulted him to national literary prominence, Serena (2008), later adapted into film. In his newest work, In the Valley, Rash returns to the short story form as well as to the characters of Serena in the novella that gives name to this collection.
If the CATF team found themselves lost in the woods, they wouldn’t just look for the signs to get back on the old road — they’d figure out how to blaze a new trail. We’ve all learned a lot over the past four months, enough to know that the CATF organization made the right decision to postpone the summer season. While the community has been mourning the loss, the team got to work at what they do best — being creative.
Although Gil Narro Garcia may be best known for his nature-inspired dinner plates, his fascination with the natural world is reflected in all of his work.
The cover of John Woods’ debut novel Lady Chevy portrays a mountain landscape against an orange-hued backdrop. The colors may depict an oddly-tinted sunset or, more likely, the fiery, sulfurous sky of a land ravaged by the fracking industry, where flares emerging from giant towers light the horizon and tainted aquifers, flammable tap water, and earthquakes have become a normal occurrence.
Reading a book on addiction recovery is not as daunting as recovery itself, but it can be a difficult task for numerous reasons…
In one of the most searing dialogues of Chris McGinley’s debut short story collection Coal Black, an eastern Kentucky drug dealer known as Hellbender asks a sheriff who’s been pursuing him: “Why do you think people around here are so addicted to drugs?” He answers his own question: “It’s because of depression. There is a streak of fatalism in Coal Black that is not just informed by the trappings of the crime fiction genre, but by the socioeconomic devastation of its rural Kentucky setting. The survivalist outlook of the characters in these stories is its inevitable consequence.
Short story collections can rise and fall by something as simple as the order in which its stories are presented to the reader. A punchy opening tale or an evocative closing yarn can compel the audience to read further or leave an impression that makes up for the weaker stories within its pages. The stakes are even higher when the stories are interconnected like in Sherwood Anderson’s Winesburg, Ohio, a standard bearer of this subgenre, where a fictional Midwest town is the canvas upon which the characters’ lives unfold, or Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son, where its main character and his drug-addled perception of the world serve as the collection’s connecting tissue.
In 2018, Williams opened up his shop and decided to call the venture KimoPics Studio and Gallery. He sees the store as a means to meet new and interesting people from all walks of life that he never would have come in contact with. “I do make my photography available for sale, but more importantly, and my main goal, is to engage with those who enter my gallery on a plethora of subjects, and to create a positive camaraderie that can be sustainable once they leave.”
After fifteen years of research and hundreds of interviews with women, author Katherine Cobb has compiled her findings into the compelling nonfiction book, The Self-Loathing Project. The majority of the book is comprised by first-person essays, which Cobb formatted from the interviews. The original questions are also included, plus a resources section and information about how the author personally overcame self-loathing.
In Tim Westover’s novel The Winter Sisters, the hills of antebellum northern Georgia are the setting for a clash between science and magic in a story that treads nimbly between fantasy, picaresque, and historical fiction. In 1822, Savannah doctor Aubrey Waycross is invited to Lawrenceville, a remote town that, thanks to Westover’s evocative prose, seems to exist in a perpetual time warp where America is still new and tradition coexists with progress—a community that is as distant from cities as it is from the ripples of the Revolutionary War and the brewing tensions of the Civil War.
Fentanyl, Inc. opens with the story of eighteen-year-olds Bailey Henke and Kain Schwandt as they go on a road trip across the snowed plains of North Dakota. Henke and Schwain plan on visiting family, but they have an ulterior motive: they hope their time on the road will help them kick their addiction to fentanyl, a drug they once discovered by buying medical patches on the black market.
Timothy Dodd’s Fissures and Other Stories is a slim tome of 19 short stories that mostly take place in West Virginia, but whose range of themes and characters build a larger world, recognizable and yet intriguing.