June 7, 2012. The next Wordkeepers event will be held Saturday, June 16, from 4 – 6 p.m. at the Ashe County Arts Council in West Jefferson (303 W. School Street). At 3 p.m., prior to the 4 p.m. readings, musicians Henry Doss and Scot Pope will play their original music at the Arts Center. Wordkeepers is free and open to the public.
Creating an opportunity for area writers to share their work via public readings, three area writers, Julie Townsend, Scot Pope and Chris Arvidson, created Wordkeepers in 2010.
Each salon features writers reading their latest works in five-minute open microphone time slots. Refreshments are provided. Writers interested in reading from their work should email Chris Arvidson at firstname.lastname@example.org to secure their first-come, first-served spot on the bill, and to receive guidelines for reading. Subsequent dates have been set for the rest of 2012, all at the Ashe County Arts Council: August 18; October 20; and December 15.
Coming in the Fall of 2012, Wordkeepers founders Townsend, Arvidson and Pope will launch a new book “Mountain Memoirs: An Ashe County Anthology” featuring many Wordkeepers writers. The book may be ordered early for a discount price at: www.mainstreetrag.com.
Julie E. Townsend is a Writing Lecturer in the Department of English at Appalachian State. She is a published short-story author who has won awards for her stories as well as a first place from the “North Carolina Working Press” for her expose on a cult. She lives in the mountains near West Jefferson. Townsend ‘s new book, Seafood Jesus, has been published by Mainstreet Rag. Copies can be purchased at www.mainstreetrag.com.
In 1992, Scot Pope escaped the Charlotte “rat race” to live a simple, humble life in rural northwest Ashe County. He is a nature photographer (vagabond images), a musician and writer of poetry and short stories. He volunteers for the Nature Conservancy, the Ashe County Arts Council and Ashe County Farmers Market.
Chris Arvidson lives in West Jefferson and works for the National Committee for the New River. She earned an MFA in creative nonfiction from Goucher College. She is the Regional Representative for the NC Writers Network; information about the Network will be available at Wordkeepers salons and at www.ncwriters.org.