I’m headed to the Greensboro Bound literary festival next week, where the novelist Wiley Cash and myself will talk about contemporary Appalachian voices, the representation and the role of writers/journalists as witnesses, and other fun stuff TBD. Musician Laurelyn Dossett will open. Cash’s novel The Last Ballad, is a fictionalized account of the life of Ella May Wiggins, a North Carolina textile worker who tried to unionize and was murdered in 1929.
NPR News, which is already reporting on the 2018 Election in West Virginia, sent me down to Pineville to record a meet-and-greet with U.S. House candidate Richard Ojeda, sponsored by the United Mine Workers of America. It was lots of fun talking to Wyoming County voters about what they’re thinking about going into the election; many were teachers who had been galvanized by Ojeda during the spring’s big strike action in Charleston.
In September 2017, I sold two nonfiction books to my dream editor, Kate Medina. One of the books is about the history and legacy of the Battle of Blair Mountain; the other is an essay collection. Here’s the announcement from Publishers Marketplace:
University of Montana MFA graduate, Best American Essays 2017 writer and producer of public radio documentaries Catherine Venable Moore’s two works of narrative non-fiction set in Appalachia, exploring events in the past of America and of that region, from the violent West Virginia Mine Wars and the Battle of Blair Mountain in 1921, up to the politics of today, to Kate Medina at Random House, in a pre-empt, by Meredith Kaffel Simonoff at DeFiore and Company (World English). UK rights: firstname.lastname@example.org . Translation: email@example.com.
On August 2, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) announced that the West Virginia Mine Wars Museum is the recipient of a $30,000 challenge grant for The Blair Centennial Project, our long-term plan to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Blair Mountain in 2021!
The NEH grant committee called the Blair Centennial Project “A bold and collaborative effort to use the humanities to foster cultural tourism and give a challenged community hope for the future through respect for the past.” Read More…