NEW WORLD: Local YA author Megan Shepherd's newest book, The Cage, is set in an alien zoo whose inhabitants are abducted teens. Photo courtesy of the author

Author Megan Shepherd launches one series and sells another

Brevard native and best-selling YA novelist Megan Shepherd, the author of the Victorian Gothic Madman’s Daughter series, recently announced that she had sold The Secret Horses of Briar Hill, a middle-grade fantasy in the vein of The Secret Garden. The book had sold at auction, meaning that editors at several publishing houses bid for the chance to take it on.

NEW EDITION: A-B Tech's student literary journal The Rhapsodist is now in its fourth year. “It was a resource for me to recognize that the arts could be valued,” says Grey LaJoie, second from right, one of this year's editors.

AB Tech’s Rhapsodist celebrates its fourth year of publicatio­n

There’s more to The Rhapsodist than just getting student submissions (and some faculty offerings) into print. Students who produce the journa learn layout and graphic design, dealing with printers and publicizing the magazine (including producing videos for airing on the A-B Tech student channel), among other things. And according to the students, the journal inspires dedication and commitment.

GO WITH THE FLOW: Experienced flow artists and newbies gather for the weekly Hooping at Pritchard Park event every Tuesday evening. Photo by Tim Robison

Meditation in motion: Local flow artists use props for mental and physical health

It’s Tuesday night at the Bywater, a riverside bar in Asheville, and patrons sit in clusters under the stars. The largest group occupies one corner of the fenced-in compound next to an area marked off with orange ribbon. Suddenly, a man steps into this improvised ring and lights the grouped wicks at both ends of the staff he’s carrying. When the wicks burst into flame, he begins to spin the staff — around his hands, his arms, his shoulders and his waist — in a hypnotic series of patterns.