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Hub Quick Hits: Curry receives second prestigious book award

Dr. Walter B. Curry Jr., a founder of Renaissance Publications LLC and Columbia resident, received the 2022 International African American Historical and Genealogy Society Book Award in the Regional Genealogy category.

Curry was honored for his publication titled, The Awakening: The Seawright-Ellison Family Saga, Vol. 1, A Narrative History. The award was presented during the a virtual awards ceremony during the African American Historical & Genealogical Society Conference from Oct. 12-15. The session covering the winning authors was on October 15, 2022, to honor the winners for their outstanding publications that accurately examine and portray African American history and genealogy in a wide variety of genres both fiction and non-fiction, for adults and young readers.

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Greenwood County Library opens fall book sale tomorrow

The Friends of Greenwood County Library  announce their fall book sale.

They asked The Hub to share with readers that among the many types "all looking for good homes" are art and music books:
  • both instructional and famous works
  • large-format museum exhibition books
  • artist and musician biographies
  • sheet music and music books
  • records and CD's
  • instructional books for voice and instruments
  • biographies of famous musicians.
Not to mention the traditional fiction, biographies, children's and teens, religion, hobbies, classics, war, cookbooks, travel, history, sports, adventure, science and nature, and electronic media such as DVD's, and audiobooks. The sale starts Wednesday, Oct. 12 (1-5:30 p.m.), runs normal library hours Thursday through Saturday, closes Sunday, and ends Monday, Oct. 17 when it runs 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.). The Greenwood County Library is in Greenwood (600 South Main St.), which is a South Carolina Cultural District.    

Jason Rapp

Tevis wins second Pushcart Prize

Personal essay on hazing rituals, consequences garners honor

Joni Tevis, the Bennette E. Geer Professor of English at Furman University, has won her second Pushcart Prize.

This time the plaudits came thanks to the essay “If Your Dreams Don’t Scare You,” a tour through history of hazing experiences—including her own—published in The Georgia Review. The Pushcart Prizes award the best poetry, short fiction and essays published in smaller literary journals and magazines in the United States. Tevis’s essay will appear with other winners in The Pushcart Prize XLVII: Best of the Small Presses 2023 edition, available Nov. 15, 2022. “Joni Tevis writes insightfully about the social dynamics that lead to abusive hazing rituals and the consequences for victims’ lives,” said C.J. Bartunek, managing editor of The Georgia Review. “In the process, she takes readers into the hidden worlds of some fascinating subcultures, from elite college marching bands to the bizarre traditions of 19th-century secret societies to the 1950s space race, in which ambitious participants must determine how far they are willing to go to succeed. ‘If Your Dreams Don’t Scare You’ is an unforgettable essay, which we were proud to publish.” “If Your Dreams Don’t Scare You” centers around Tevis’s experience as a member of the marching band at Florida State University, where she earned her bachelor’s degree. “One thing I’m really happy about is the community that writing and publishing this essay has allowed me to build,” Tevis said. “I wrote this from a place of sorrow, of losing the community that marching band had been for me. For me, being hazed in this way was a radically alone-making thing—I didn’t talk about it, not with the others who had been through it, and not with friends or family back home. When I finally started to write about it, after many years, I didn’t realize the loneliness that I still carried with me, like a scar this experience caused me to have.” Working with Bartunek, Tevis said, helped her “shape the piece into something that wasn’t just for me, but was for other people, other readers. After the piece’s publication, I’ve heard from other band members who’ve reached out to connect with me about this material. I’m so thankful for that. This is what I want my writing to do: to help us feel less alone, to help build communities. “This essay means a lot to me, not only because it was so hard to write, but because it allowed me the great gift of writing my way into a new community. I’m so honored that it will be reprinted in the Pushcart Prize anthology, finding its way to new readers,” Tevis said. Tevis’s first Pushcart-winning essay, “What the Body Knows,” was published in the 2015 edition of the compendium. Her first collection of essays, The Wet Collection: A Field Guide to Iridescence and Memory, was published in 2007. Her second, The World Is On Fire, was a Kirkus Best Book of 2015. Tevis’s writing has also appeared in The Oxford American, Shenandoah, Conjunctions, AGNI, The Bellingham Review, North Dakota Quarterly and Barrelhouse. She earned an M.F.A. and a Ph.D. from the University of Houston. She joined Furman’s faculty in 2008.

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Greenwood Co. Library turning the page

Spring Book Sale revived after cancellations

The Friends of Greenwood County Library have been waiting for this. Two and a half years, according to staff.

They apparently have the books to show for it and asked The Hub to share with readers that among the many types "all looking for good homes" are art and music books:
  • how-to's
  • art history
  • art and artists
  • antiques
  • sheet music
  • music books
  • instructions
Now to mention the traditional fiction, biographies, children's and teens, religion, hobbies, classics, war, cookbooks, travel, history, sports, adventure, science and nature, and electronic media such as DVD's, CD's (if you can find a player these days), and audiobooks. The sale starts Wednesday, April 20 (1-5:30 p.m.), runs normal library hours Thursday through Sunday, and ends Sunday, April 25 when it runs 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.). The Greenwood County Library is in Greenwood (600 South Main St.), which is a South Carolina Cultural District. Promo graphic with text, all of which appears in the story.    

Jason Rapp

S.C. author sees third book published

Artist, writer, and illustrator Janet Kozachek has published her third illustrated book of poetry.

[caption id="attachment_48277" align="alignright" width="250"] Click image to enlarge[/caption] A Rendering of Soliloquies - Figures Painted in Spots of Time marks observations between artist, model and memory through an emblematic juxtaposition of verse and images. It is on sale now through the publisher, Finishing Line Press. It is her second book with them. Poet and professor Dr. Sarah Wyman said in a review, “In Kozachek’s art, cats and quilts, jewels and molecules fragment and scatter like dropped words from the mouths of models. Sketched subjects sit in the artist’s studio and tell their stories as she paints them: the feminine Kinnari birds with tongues like whips, la mente malevola, a migraine like a doomed mouse before the feline paw, memories of a mother who worshiped the mango bone. In poems, paintings, and drawings, the artist captures moments of deep listening, translated to word and image.” Janet Kozachek has an eclectic educational background, having studied arts and languages on three continents. She has worked as a peripatetic artist/educator, teaching Chinese art, drawing, painting, and mosaics to students from grade level through college. Her previously published chapbook, My Women, My Monsters (Finishing Line Press, 2020) won an honorable mention award from Concrete Wolf Press. When not writing, drawing, or painting in her studio in Orangeburg, Kozachek finds joy in cooking, gardening, and making her one of a kind ceramic musical instruments. She is represented by the Artisan’s Center in Walterboro. Finishing Line Press is a poetry publisher based in Georgetown, Kentucky. In addition to the Chapbook Series, it publishes the New Women’s Voices Series and sponsors the Finishing Line Press Open Chapbook Competition.

Jason Rapp

Furman student presents at prestigious conferences

Furman undergrad getting noticed for research

Furman University senior Beth Fraser of Shelby, North Carolina, has won the respect only few undergraduate-level researchers receive in the world of literature and Romanticism. This summer, Shelby (right) presented her research at the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment held at University of California, Davis, and at the International Conference on Romanticism hosted by The University of Manchester, England. Both conferences are known for discriminating audiences, researchers, and equally scrutinous research review committees. At the two meetings, Fraser presented “Poesy breaths in all: Ecocritical Explorations of Romanticism’s Omnipoetic Universe.” Born of Fraser’s interdisciplinary project examining ecoacoustic avian telemetries, the paper explores naturalistic figurations of birdsong by Romantic poet John Clare, who was described by his biographer as “the greatest labouring-class poet that England has ever produced.” The opportunity to present at both conferences was a pleasant surprise for Fraser. “I scarcely dared to hope that either would accept me, and yet here I am with the beautiful opportunity to present at both,” she said. Mentor Michele Speitz, Furman associate professor of English literature, said that many graduate students and faculty members submit work to these conferences without success. “So for Beth to be selected as the only undergraduate to present at two major professional conferences is truly remarkable,” Speitz said. “She is not only presenting her work in front of an exacting audience, but is speaking as an expert, as someone with something important to share with people in the know.” Fraser said Furman’s Office of Undergraduate Research and the Furman Humanities Development Fund encouraged and supported her investigations. An English literature and art history double-major, Fraser specializes in 19th-century British literature and early 20th-century painting with particular interests in Romanticism, ekphrastic poetry, the Simultaneous movement, aesthetic theologies, ecocritical theory, and the intersection of art and literature. Fraser is especially interested in Romantic-era metaphysics and ecocritical art history. She is co-writing an article with Speitz entitled “Avian Telemetries & the Audible Anthropocene: Romantic Ecoacoustics, Transdisciplinary Ecologies, Sympoetic Worlding.” Following graduation next spring, Fraser plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Romantic literature or modern art on her way to becoming a professor in the field.

New book takes dogs in literature for a walk

Furman librarian Jeffrey Makala co-edits anthology

Jeffrey Makala, Furman University special collections librarian and university archivist at the James B. Duke Library, has co-edited a new book about dogs in literature. The book, “In Dogs We Trust: An Anthology of American Dog Literature,” is co-edited by Jacob F. Rivers III and published by the University of South Carolina Press. A book signing event is set for Saturday, June 8, 10 a.m.-noon at M. Judson Booksellers in downtown Greenville. University of South Carolina Press offers this description of “In Dogs We Trust”:

“‘In Dogs We Trust’ is a grand anthology that celebrates the many sterling virtues of the canine species. Dogs have lived with humans for thousands of years as working partners. By the 19th century, their role expanded to companions. American dog literature reflects this gradual but dramatic shift that continues even today. Our household dogs are quite literally closer than ever to us: sleeping in our beds, getting dressed in Halloween costumes, and serving as emotional support companions.

“The first comprehensive anthology of American dog literature, ‘In Dogs We Trust’ features stories, anecdotes and poetry from periodicals dating from the 19th to the early 20th century. By mining the vast American literary archive of this time, Rivers and Makala reveal the mystique and magic of the human-canine relationship and what they believe is one of the best connections humans have to the mysteries of the natural world.”

Rivers is the director for the Office of Veterans Services at the University of South Carolina and a teacher in the Department of English. He is the author of “Cultural Values in the Southern Sporting Narrative” and “Early Southern Sports and Sportsmen: 1830-1910.” Apart from his roles as special collections librarian and university archivist at Furman, Makala is owner of Two Terriers Press. He has written about 19th century American literature and book history in the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America; Literature & History; Printing History; and The Oxford Companion to the Book. He is also an editor for The Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing (SHARP News).

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Young readers invited to write to favorite authors

[caption id="attachment_23308" align="alignright" width="250"]Lindsey Knott Lindsey Knott, Level 1 first place winner, reads her letter during the 2015 awards ceremony.[/caption] Young readers in grades 4-12 are invited to write a personal letter to an author for the Letters about Literature contest, a national reading and writing promotion program. The letter can be to any author (living or dead) from any genre (fiction or nonfiction, contemporary or classic) explaining how that author’s work changed the student’s life or view of the world. The 23rd annual writing contest for young readers is made possible by a generous grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, with additional support from gifts to the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, in partnership with the South Carolina Center for the Book and the South Carolina State Library with financial support from the South Carolina State Library Foundation. Prizes will be awarded on both the state and national levels. The South Carolina Center for the Book’s panel of judges will select the top letter writers in the state, to be honored in an awards ceremony on April 29, 2016. Their winning letters will be published online at the South Carolina Center for the Book’s website. South Carolina winners will also receive monetary prizes, and then advance to the national judging. South Carolina winners will receive $100 for first place, $50 for second place, and $25 for third place in each level. For more information and entry forms, please visit www.read.gov/letters. Last year’s South Carolina winners may be found at the ReadSC.org website. Submissions from grades 9-12 must be postmarked by December 4, 2015. Submissions from grades 4-8 must be postmarked by January 11, 2016. Image above: seven of the nine winners from the 2015 contest.

Sumter County Library awarded Big Read grant

The Sumter County Library has been awarded a grant to host The Big Read. Managed by Arts Midwest, The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment. The Big ReadThe Sumter County Library is one of 77 nonprofit organizations to receive a grant to host a Big Read project between September 2013 and June 2014. Sumter’s Big Read will focus on The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. Activities will take place during October 2013. According to Library Director Robert Harden, “the Sumter County Library is pleased and excited to be chosen to host The Big Read.  This will afford our community the opportunity to explore one of the great works of American literature through a variety of events and programs.” NEA Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa said, “It's wonderful to see that these 77 communities are making reading and the celebration of books a priority. I look forward to seeing the innovative ways they find to engage their communities in these great works of classic and contemporary literature." The Big Read provides communities nationwide with the opportunity to read, discuss and celebrate one of 31 selections from U.S. and world literature. The selected organizations will receive grants to promote and carry out community-based reading programs featuring activities such as read-a-thons, book discussions, lectures, movie screenings and performing arts events. For more information about The Big Read in Sumter, contact Ford Simmons, Sumter County Library, at 803-773-7273 or simmonsf@spiritcom.net. Via: South Carolina State Library

Annual North Charleston Arts Festival set for May 3-11

The 31st annual North Charleston Arts Festival kicks off  May 3 and continues through May 11. Recognized by the Southeast Tourism Society as a Top 20 Event, the nine-day event has matured into one of the most comprehensive arts festival in the state, drawing thousands of residents and visitors to experience the talents of national, regional and local artists and performers in the areas of Dance, Music, Theatre, Visual Arts, Crafts, Photography, Media Arts, and Literature. Nearly 100 festival offerings are scheduled to take place in a variety of venues throughout North Charleston and the surrounding area, including libraries, community centers, schools, civic auditoriums and parks. The City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department organizes and presents the event, striving to maintain the spirit of a public celebration with the mission of presenting a broad, multi-discipline schedule with a wide range of performances, exhibitions, and activities for people of all ages and backgrounds. Many of the offerings are free, and those that are ticketed are moderately priced. “The variety of Arts Festival offerings and the inclusiveness of the event have really become a point of pride for the City of North Charleston,” says North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey. “The event provides both our residents and visitors from throughout the Southeast a myriad of opportunities to experience high quality programming in every arts discipline in a variety of traditional and non-traditional settings.” The Arts Festival Main Event, held on Saturday, May 4, and Sunday, May 5, at the North Charleston Performing Arts Center and Charleston Area Convention Center, offers free admission and parking to more than 40 performances on four stages. Features include judged fine art and photography exhibits; the 12th annual South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Exhibit; youth art from Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester county students; the Lowcountry Gem & Mineral Society show and sale; the Village Antiques & Collectibles show; children's activities at Box City and Creation Stations; art & craft vendors, a food court, and much more. Free and ticketed offerings throughout the nine-day schedule include concerts, street dances, theatre presentations, film screenings, art workshops and demonstrations, an art walk and  children’s programs. This year’s Grand Finale on May 11 features a Tri-County school showcase, music and dance performances, a slam poetry show, children’s activities, food trucks and an evening concert by Rivers & Company. The event concludes with a fantastic fireworks display over the Cooper River. For more information, visit NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com or contact the North Charleston Cultural Arts Department office at (843) 740-5854. Via: North Charleston Cultural Arts Department