JESSE GRAVES grew up in Sharps Chapel, Tennessee, about 40 miles north of Knoxville, in a community his ancestors settled in the 1780s. He is an Associate Professor of English and Poet-in-Residence at East Tennessee State University, where he won the 2012 New Faculty Award from the College of Arts & Sciences. His first poetry collection, Tennessee Landscape with Blighted Pine, won the 2011 Weatherford Award in Poetry from Berea College and the Appalachian Studies Association, as well as a Book of the Year Award from the Appalachian Writers’ Association. He was given the 2013 Thomas and Lillie D. Chaffin Award for Appalachian Writing. His second collection of poems, Basin Ghosts, also won the 2014 Weatherford Award in Poetry, making him the first poet to win the award more than one time. His poems have appeared in such journals as Prairie Schooner, Southern Poetry Review, Connecticut Review, and in the Poem of the Week feature for Missouri Review. He is editor of several volumes of poetry and scholarship, including three volumes of The Southern Poetry Anthology (Contemporary Appalachia, Tennessee, and North Carolina), Jeff Daniel Marion: Poet on the Holston, and the forthcoming Complete Poems of James Agee (University of Tennessee Press, 2017). Graves was awarded the 2014 Philip H. Freund Prize for Creative Writing from Cornell University, and the 2015 James Still Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers.
MARY HOOD is the author of the novel Familiar Heat and two short story collections, How Far She Went (winner of the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction and the Southern Review/LSU Short Fiction Award) and And Venus Is Blue (winner of the Lillian Smith Award, the Townsend Prize for Fiction, and the Dixie Council of Authors and Journalists Author of the Year Award). Hood's work has also been honored with the Whiting Writers' Award, the Robert Penn Warren Award, and a Pushcart Prize. A 2014 inductee into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, Hood lives and writes in Commerce, Georgia.
JEREMY B. JONES is the author of Bearwallow: A Personal History of a Mountain Homeland, winner of the 2014 Appalachian Book of the Year in nonfiction. His essays appear in numerous literary magazines, including The Oxford American and Brevity and have twice been named “Notable” in Best American Essays. He hails from the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and earned his MFA in nonfiction writing from the University of Iowa. He teaches creative writing at Western Carolina University.
ED MCCLANAHAN is a native of Brooksville, Kentucky. He has taught English and creative writing at Oregon State University, Stanford University, the University of Montana, the University of Kentucky and Northern Kentucky University. His books include The Natural Man;Famous People I Have Known; A Congress of Wonders; My Vita, If You Will; Fondelle and O The Clear Moment. His latest book is I Just Hitched in From the Coast: The Ed McClanahan Reader, a collection of 14 stories. The title story of A Congress of Wonders was made into a prize-winning short film in 1993, and in 1994 McClanahan was the subject of an hour-long documentary on Kentucky Educational Television. His work has appeared in many magazines, including Esquire, Rolling Stone and Playboy, and has twice won Playboy’s Best Non-Fiction awards. He has also been awarded a Wallace Stegner Fellowship, two Yaddo Fellowships, and an Al Smith Fellowship. He lives with his wife Hilda in Lexington, KY, and is working on a latter-day sequel to Natural Man, titled The Return of the Son of Needmore.
ROSE MCLARNEY has published two collections of poems, Its Day Being Gone (Penguin Books, 2014) and The Always Broken Plates of Mountains (Four Way Books, 2012). Its Day Being Gone is the 2013 National Poetry Series winner. Rose has been awarded fellowships by the MacDowell Colony, Bread Loaf and Sewanee Writers’ Conferences, and Warren Wilson College, and won the Fellowship of Southern Writers’ New Writing Award for Poetry and Alligator Juniper’s 2011 National Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared in publications including The Kenyon Review, The Southern Review, Orion, Slate, New England Review, Missouri Review, Green Mountains Review, and dozens of other journals. Rose earned her MFA from Warren Wilson's MFA Program for Writers and has taught at the college, among other institutions. Currently, she is Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Auburn University and Poetry Editor of The Southern Humanities Review.
GEORGE SINGLETON has published seven collections of stories, two novels, and one book of writing advice. His stories have appeared inHarper’s, Atlantic Monthly, Playboy, Georgia Review and elsewhere. He’s been awarded a Pushcart Prize. He’s a 2009 Guggenheim Fellow. Singleton received the Hillsdale Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers in 2010, and was inducted into the Fellowship of Southern Writers in 2014, and is a member of the South Carolina Academy of Authors. His work has been anthologized in New Stories from the South--the Year’s Best ten times. He received the Corrington Award for Literary Excellence in 2016. Singleton holds the John C. Cobb Endowed Chair in the Humanities at Wofford College.
CHARLES DODD WHITE is a recipient of the Thomas and Lillie D. Chaffin Award for excellence in Appalachian Literature, a Jean Ritchie Fellowship from Lincoln Memorial University, and an individual artist’s grant from the North Carolina Arts Council. He is author of the novels, A SHELTER OF OTHERS (2014), LAMBS OF MEN (2010), and the story collection, SINNERS OF SANCTION COUNTY (2011). He is editor of the contemporary Appalachian story anthologies, DEGREES OF ELEVATION (2010) and APPALACHIA NOW (2015). He is a graduate of Spalding’s MFA writing program and also has a PhD in English from Texas A&M at Commerce. Currently, he serves as an Assistant Professor at Pellissippi State Community College in Knoxville, Tennessee where he chairs the James Agee Literary Conference.
CRYSTAL WILKINSON is the author of The Birds of Opulence, Blackberries, Blackberries and Water Street. Wilkinson is the recipient of awards and fellowships from The Kentucky Foundation for Women, The Kentucky Arts Council, The Mary Anderson Center for the Arts and the Archie D. and Bertha H. Walker Scholarship at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. She is the recent winner of the Sallie Bingham Award from the Kentucky Foundation for Women for the promotion of activism and feminist artist expression. She has presented workshops and readings throughout the country, including the International Conference on the Short Story in English at the University of Iowa, the Ocean State Writers Conference and the African American Women Writers Conference at the University of the District of Columbia. Wilkinson was recently named Appalachian Writer-in-Residence at Berea College where she teaches writing and literature. She is also a faculty member in the brief residency MFA in Writing Program at Spalding University. She and her partner, artist & poet Ron Davis, own Wild Fig Books and Coffee, located on North Limestone in Lexington, Kentucky.
JACK WRIGHT has explored and celebrated Appalachian life through music, theater, film, writing and activism for the better part of 40 years. A native of Wise, Virginia, Wright was founder of June Appal Recordings and an original member of Roadside Theater. He appeared in Universal Pictures’ Coal Miner’s Daughter as a musician and as Pete, a coal miner in 20th Century Fox’s Kentucky Woman. He has made many appearances on stage including the role of King Cymbeline, in the Shakespeare play. He was an original cast member in Lime Kiln Theater’sStonewall Country. He served on the board of directors of Appalshop. Inc., in Whitesburg, Ky., and was board chair in 1983-84. He was the Ohio Arts Council’s media arts program coordinator before entering academe in 1989 at the Ohio University School of Film, where he taught documentary film production and film studies. At Berea College he was National Endowment for the Humanities Chair at the Appalachian Center in 2002-03. A two-time winner of the Ohio Arts Council creative writing fellowship, he has written for various journals and magazines, appeared on National Public Radio, and in 2007 produced the award-winning book and CD set “Music of Coal.” In 2010 he received the Cratis Williams Service Award given by the Appalachian Studies Association to an individual who has made exemplary contributions to Appalachian Studies. A recent retiree from Ohio University, Wright is now producing film and audio projects and volunteering with the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio.
THE LONETONES have perfected contemporary Appalachian music” according to Blank Newspaper. They have been called Americana, Folk Rock, Indie Folk, Folk Pop, Modern Folk, Folkadelic.... The Lonetones are known for their unique arrangements and strong songwriting. Sometimes you’ll catch them playing electric guitar and keyboards – other times mandolin and banjo. They have opened for Sam Bush and the Carolina Chocolate Drops, among others. They have performed at Bristol Rhythm and Roots, The Atlantis Music Conference, Jammin' at Hippie Jacks Americana Music Festival, The Tennessee Theatre and the Rhythm and Blooms Festival. Their most recent album, Modern Victims, stayed on the national Roots Music Charts for several weeks and was named a top-10 album of 2012 by the Knoxville News Sentinel.
CO-DIRECTOR. DARNELL ARNOULT’s first book, What Travels With Us: Poems, was published in 2005. The collection received the 2005 Weatherford Award, was named 2006 Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance Poetry Book of the Year and was a finalist for Appalachian Poetry Book of the Year in 2005. A novel, Sufficient Grace, followed in 2006. Sufficient Grace received a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly and positive reviews from Book List, Kirkus, American Library Association and National Association of the Mentally Ill. It was selected for the Book Sense annual reading group list and nominated for several regional awards. Additionally, Arnoult was honored as Tennessee Writer of the Year by the Tennessee Writers Alliance in 2007 and was awarded the Mary Frances Hobson Prize in Arts and Letters from Chowan University in 2009. Arnoult was born in Martinsville, Virginia, and then lived and worked in North Carolina for 20 years before moving to Tennessee in 1999. She is now writer-in-residence at LMU, where she also serves as program coordinator for Arts in the Gap, and co-edits drafthorse: a literary journal of work and no work. Arnoult holds the MA from North Carolina State University and the MFA from the University of Memphis.
CO-DIRECTOR. DENTON LOVING is the author of the poetry collection Crimes Against Birds and editor of Seeking Its Own Level, an anthology of writings about water. He co-edits drafthorse: a literary journal of work and no work. His fiction, poetry, essays and reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in more than 60 magazines and journals including River Styx, Flyleaf, [PANK] and Fiction Southeast. He serves as director of prospect research at Lincoln Memorial University and lives in Speedwell, Tennessee.
Lincoln Memorial University
Cumberland Gap Parkway
P.O. Box 2005
Harrogate, TN 37752