Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Sarah Norris

Seeing Sparks

Minton Sparks brings to life the South of strained relations and small-town sirens

July 21, 2011 Fresh from sold-out shows in New York City and an unprecedented award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers, Minton Sparks continues to pursue a literary art form she invented from scratch. Now this genre-defying performance poet, songwriter, and novelist—whose fans and collaborators include Dorothy Allison, Marshall Chapman, and John Prine—is back home in Nashville, but already she’s got her eye on Broadway.

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Every year the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival in Harrogate attracts dozens of people who are crazy about writing

July 7, 2011 Founded six years ago by author Silas House, then Lincoln Memorial University’s writer-in-residence, the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival is packed with lectures; workshops in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry; readings by teachers as well as students; a play; and multiple concerts. This year, Chapter 16’s Sarah Norris was there, and sends this report from Harrogate.

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An Opry Home Companion

With A Guitar and a Pen Old Time Radio Hour, novelist Robert Hicks has created a live broadcast that just might save the printed word

May 25, 2011 When Garrison Keillor got the idea for his long-running radio show, A Prairie Home Companion, he was sitting in the Confederate Gallery of the Ryman Auditorium, watching the Opry. Now novelist Robert Hicks has created his own home-grown radio variety show, A Guitar and a Pen Old Time Radio Hour, a combination of the Opry and A Prairie Home Companion, with a dash of Thacker Mountain Radio thrown in. Chapter 16 checked in on last week’s show, which featured readings by novelist William Gay and musical performances by Holly Williams, daughter of Hank Jr. Another edition of “A Guitar and a Pen Old Time Radio Hour” will be taped at Puckett’s Grocery and Restaurant in Franklin on May 26 and will feature Eric Brace, Peter Cooper, Fayssoux Starling McLean, and Rodney Crowell. The show starts at 6 p.m. Cost is $15, and seating is limited. To make reservations, call 615-794-5527.

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