Short Story America Festival brings authors to Beaufort

charley@beaufortgazette.comSeptember 19, 2012 

  • Friday
    3-5 p.m.: Opening Seminar by Eric Witchey, Beaufort Town Center, 2121 Boundary St.

    6-9 p.m.: Opening reception, Old Bay Marketplace Loft, 917 Bay St.

    Saturday
    9 a.m.-5 p.m.: Readings, seminars and book signings, University of South Carolina Beaufort Center for the Arts, 801 Carteret St.

    5:30-9 p.m.: Evening session and authors' reception, University of South Carolina Beaufort Center for the Arts, 801 Carteret St.


    Sunday
    1-2 p.m.: Part Three of Eric Witchey Seminar, Short Story America, University of South Carolina Beaufort Center for the Arts, 801 Carteret St.

    2-3 p.m.: Children's Story Hour, Center Court Gazebo, Beaufort Town Center, 2121 Boundary St.

    Admission is $20 a day or $35 for an all-event pass.

Another chapter opens this weekend in the life of Short Story America, a Beaufort-based publisher of short stories.

The inaugural Short Story America Festival & Conference, Friday through Sunday, offers a weekend of honing the craft of writing short stories as well as listening to authors read their works.

But it's about more than just learning how to put together a short story.

"We want writers and readers to attend," said Tim Johnston, a writer and the editor of Short Story America.

This weekend's schedule was based on the feedback received after the 2011 release of "Short Story America Anthology, Volume 1," a collection of 56 short stories.

People said they wanted a festival in which writers, aspiring writers and readers can listen to stories and then have discussions afterward.

The readers want to satisfy their curiosity and meet their favorite authors, he said.

Johnston described the festival as a place "where readers can have a conversation with an author or have their books signed, as well as drift into seminars and conferences."

Among the featured guests are international Hemingway scholar Carl Eby, who is also the English department chairman at the University of South Carolina Beaufort. Eby will give a seminar on three Hemingway short stories.

Workshops will be offered on the craft of writing short stories and visiting with authors who are coming from Los Angeles, Portland, Ore., San Antonio and New York.

Local authors include Johnston, Warren Slesinger, Katherine Tandy Brown and Gail Westerfield.

"It will be a nice mix," Johnston said.

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