Wednesday, January 11, 2012

NC author attacks Southern "staleness"

The Greensboro News & Record did a great write-up of Kat Meads's new novel When the Dust Finally Settles a few weeks ago. The novel is set in Northeastern North Carolina, just below the Virginia line, in 1968 amid desegregation. According to blogger Charles Wheeler:

The novel attacks staleness. Southern fiction often gets mired in mud holes of stereotypes. This story splashes through them like an open-throttled John Deere. A deputy sheriff is kind, understanding, reasonable and humane. A black high school basketball star is tentative and unsure of himself. A small community welcomes change, though not with wide open arms. It’s not easy. Change never is.

What do you think about Southern stereotypes in fiction? What's the difference between a stereotype and an artistic "rendering" of a region? The Southern authors I admire, like Lee Smith and Tim McLaurin, manage to capture the essence of the South without compromising their characters or the story.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Mag writing course still has openings!

Need some extra cash? Want to see your name in print -- or online, as the case may be these days? Learn about magazine writing with my online class at starting January 16. It's ten weeks, for 150 pounds (about $232), which isn't bad for 10 weeks. At the end of the course, we put together a mini magazine, showcasing your writing, and post it on the website for the world to see!

Marianne Wheelaghan (right) has been running her online school for 10 years and also features classes in short story and novel writing. Check it out!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Anthology seeks Southern fiction

Q&W Publishers, a small press out of Grayson, GA, is looking for submissions for its Anthology on the "Old, Weird South." They pay $50 a pop, which is better than many, which pay zilch! Here's the description from their website:

The American South is a haunted place — full of ghost stories, native legends, persistent devils & angels, souls sold at the crossroads, and moon-eyed maidens living in the Okefenokee. The South’s best writers — Faulkner, O’Connor, McCullers — all keep this sense of the otherworldly in their fiction.
In this spirit, Q & W Publishers is looking for submissions for an anthology of short fiction and non-fiction that explores the fantastic, eerie, and bizarre side of the American South.