Appalachian Thursday – Place as Character

If you haven’t caught on yet, I LOVE these Appalachian Mountains. And my hope is that when I write about Appalachia in my books the sense of place is so strong it’s practically its own character. I even go so far as to lead a workshop about “Setting as Character.” And I’ll be leading thatContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Place as Character”

Appalachian Thursday – Sustainable Eating

My great-grandmother was on the sustainable eating bandwagon before it was even a thing. Of course, she called it “surviving.” She mostly ate what the family grew, foraged, or hunted. They took what they needed with a little extra to “lay by.” Sustainable. Not to mention practical. Just before Christmas I was listening to theContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Sustainable Eating”

Appalachian Thursday – Breakin' Up Christmas

We’ve rung in the new year and Christmas is over . . . or is it? I’ve written before about Old Christmas–the mountain tradition of celebrating the holiday on January 6 due to some calendar confusion dating back hundreds of years. But there’s also an Appalachian tradition called “Breakin’ Up Christmas” that only goes backContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Breakin' Up Christmas”

Appalachian Thursday — What’s My Theme?

I’m looking at updating my website and I’m trying to be intentional and thoughtful about it. I’ve already switched up my header and I’ve taken the first steps toward developing a shinier, sharper, more professional site. As part of that I’m looking for a tagline–a theme for my writing if you will. Since my firstContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday — What’s My Theme?”

Appalachian Thursday – How about a Christmas story?

Here’ in the mountains it’s getting to be the season for curling up with hot cocoa and a good book while the temperatures drop outside. And what could be better than a Christmas story? Oh wait–I have one of those! My novella, A Shot at Love (the one nominated for a Christy Award!), is nowContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – How about a Christmas story?”

Appalachian Thursday – The Last Thanksgiving?

I like Thanksgiving almost as much as Easter. It combines gratitude with amazing food and those are two of my favorite things. And Thanksgiving at our family farm has long held a special place in my heart. When I was a kid, Thanksgiving most years centered on my Mom’s family. My grandparents, my aunt andContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – The Last Thanksgiving?”

Appalachian Thursday – At Home in WV

Today I’m visiting family in WV. We’re headed to Beverly and Dailey this morning–sites for my 2020 novel. And this evening I’ll be giving a talk and doing a signing at the Upshur County Public Library (my childhood library!) for When Silence Sings. So not much of a post today–just a photo of Main StreetContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – At Home in WV”

Appalachian Thursday – Pot-bellied Stoves

I’ve written potbellied stoves into a couple of my stories. You’ll still find them plenty of places in Appalachia and I have direct experience with two. Our one-room church had a potbellied stove on each side of the sanctuary. It was a deacon’s job to come to church early in the winter to get theContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Pot-bellied Stoves”

Appalachian Thursday – Cracking Nuts

The apples have fallen, the pumpkins are getting carved, and the leaves are turning orange and yellow and red. Must be time for the nut harvest! Of course, if we don’t hurry, the critters will beat us to it. Growing up on the farm, we had walnuts, chestnuts, and filberts (hazelnuts). With walnuts, it wasContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Cracking Nuts”