One of the challenges in writing about trauma, says Asheville-based author Rachel M. Hanson, is that sometimes trauma is used as a narrative hook or way to build suspense. Her approach is to describe the traumatic event or situation right away, “so it’s not used as a teaser. What I’m interested in is the aftermath.”
Local historian and archivist Katherine Cutshall discusses the parallels between Thomas Wolfe’s 1923 play, Welcome to Our City, and modern-day Asheville.
Pleasure, guilt, goodness, regret, confusion, self-respect and motherhood are among the many topics local poet and essayist Brit Washburn explores in her recently published collection of essays, “Homing In: Attempts on a Life of Poetry and Purpose.”
“I think there’s a sense from those newer to the form that poetry is something to be ‘solved’— that there’s a hidden meaning to a poem that requires the reader to find a clue or key and it unlocks,” says local poet Brandon Amico. “It’s hard to say where that sense comes from, but almost every young person seems to be taught that.
To celebrate WNC’s 2023 literary accomplishments, Xpress reached out to writers Mildred Barya, Clint Bowman, Michael Hettich, Meagen Lucas and Brit Washburn. All five participants had new publications come out this year.
We return with the latest iteration of “Look Homeward,” a recurring feature exploring the life, work and impact of Asheville author Thomas Wolfe on our area’s local writers, educators, historians and creatives.
A doll show at The Odd. Plus, whirling dervishes at Warren Wilson; the return of Swannanoa Winterfest; and more.
“How do we bring literature to the spaces where people already are?” asks Jacqui Castle, an author and Lit Local Mini Bookshops.
Christmas Jam returns for its 32nd year. Plus, SART offers “pay-what-you-wish” tickets for its annual Christmas revue; 250 nativity sets on display; and more.
The nonprofit’s writing, craft and visual arts groups forge a strong sense of belonging among participants.
A local rock band’s musical circus at Asheville Music Hall. Plus, Asheville’s annual holiday parade; a new album from Blue Ridge Music Trails; and more.
“I think some folks definitely have assumptions about what makes a book or a poem ‘Appalachian.’ I find most Appalachian writing buying into some of the marketable stereotypes from the region instead of saying or doing anything interesting,” says poet Evan Gray. “I’m not interested in that.”
“The brilliant thing about NaNoWriMo is that it’s not about writing a good book in a month. It’s about just finishing something,” says Asheville-based author Stephanie Perkins.
Asheville Sister Cities brings a Day of the Dead celebration to Weaverville. Plus, a moonlit paddle down the French Broad River; the return of Surreal Sirkus; and more.
“There is so much pressure in our society for mothers to be perfect,” Batchelder remembers. “So when my daughter got depressed in high school, I wondered if it was my fault, what did I do wrong, what should I have done differently. Was I too much or not enough?”
Seasonal regional tales at the Vance Birthplace State Historic Site’s annual event. Plus, the 14th annual Queer Girls Literary Reading; a new collection of poems from Hendersonville writer; and more.
“I love poetry that requires the engagement of the reader’s imagination,” says poet Tina Barr. “I like opaque language, rather than transparent language.”
The creators/hosts of “Listen & Be Heard,” “PBL Pod” and “Rock Is Lit” discuss their shows.
The Lovely Asheville Annual Fall Festival returns for a second year. Plus, former Kentucky poet laureate speaks at UNCA; a new book of poems from local author; and more.
The Knotty Gs put together the second annual John Prine tribute at The Grey Eagle. Plus, Mars Hill Brewing Co. hosts live music fundraiser for a postal worker who was carjacked; “Ben and Angela” premieres at the BeBe Theatre; and more.
The poet talks new projects and the area’s literary scene.