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Congratulations to the 2017 Verner Award recipients!

Verner Award StatueCongratulations to the recipients of the 2017 Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Awards for the Arts! The S.C. Arts Commission annually presents the awards, the highest honor the state gives in the arts, to recognize outstanding achievement and contributions to the arts in South Carolina. Awards will be presented May 2 (time and location to be announced). Established in 1972, the annual awards recognize outstanding achievement and contributions to the arts in South Carolina. This year’s recipients:

“Each of these Verner Award recipients has contributed greatly to the arts community as an outstanding ambassador for our state," said S.C. Arts Commission Chairman Henry Horowitz. "Their dedication to the arts benefits South Carolinians and materially enhances our state’s economic vitality. As the Arts Commission marks its 50th anniversary, we are honored to recognize these organizations and individuals who embody the service, commitment and passion that helped build our state’s half century of leadership in the arts.” Also on May 2, the S.C. Arts Foundation will honor the recipients and the arts community at the South Carolina Arts Award Luncheon, a fundraiser supporting the programs of the S.C. Arts Commission. An art sale begins at 11 a.m. at the USC Alumni Center, 900 Senate St. in Columbia, with the luncheon following at noon. Tickets are $50 per person and may be purchased online. The 2017 Verner Awards are sponsored by Colonial Life. For more about the Verner Awards or the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon, call (803) 734-8696 or visit www.SouthCarolinaArts.com. Image: First row, left to right: Laura Spong, Leo Twiggs, Quentin Baxter, Betsy Teter. Second row: Brenda McCutchen, City of Beaufort/USC Beaufort Center for the Arts, S.C. Humanities, Stringer and Rainey Foundations

Hub City Bookship & Press featured in “Book publishers go hyper-local”

An article in the Post and Courier highlights the work of Hub City Press and Hub City Bookshop in Spartanburg and includes data demonstrating that reading has increased among adults and young adults.

At least half a dozen book publishers operating in South Carolina are succeeding, even as larger publishers are struggling with growing demand for Web-based products and electronic books. They are flourishing even though powerful retailers and distributors like Amazon and Ingram demand discounts and high fees. What's the secret? Specialization, South Carolina publishers said. And a strong emphasis on local topics and people. Oh, and coffee table books. Betsy Teter runs Hub City Press and the Hub City Bookshop. The store is the epitome of hyper-local, small and independent. It's located on the main square downtown. Teter raised $300,000 from the community five or six years ago to renovate the abandoned Masonic Temple. Now Spartanburg residents lounge, read, sip coffee and eat pastries, chat and listen to readings in the space. Hub City Press got its start in 1995. “There are a lot of writers in Spartanburg, because we have a lot of colleges,” Teter said. “This was a way that writers came together to figure out how to publish each other.” In the beginning, Hub City forged a partnership with the S.C. Arts Commission to publish fiction and poetry, concentrating on emerging North Carolina and South Carolina writers, as well as a few authors who've made it, such as Ron Rash and George Singleton. The two organizations introduced the South Carolina First Novel Prize in 2009. Hub City, a nonprofit, had its best year ever in 2011, Teter said. The book store did especially well. “It's all about events,” she said. “Authors do a lot of events. People still want to meet authors. People still want to get signed books.” Hub City also organizes writers' workshops that match aspiring authors with established mentors, and it pursues other programming that generates incremental revenue so the organization isn't only depending on book and coffee sales.
Read the full article. Via: Charleston Post and Courier