From A Place Called Solid - West Virginia and Its Writers

The front of the map is dedicated to the oral literature that came before as exemplified in the works of Ruth Ann Musick, West Virginia folktale scholar: The Telltale Lilac Bush and Other West Virginia Ghost Tales (1965); Green Hills of Magic, West Virginia Folk Tales from Europe (1970) and Coffin Hollow and Other Ghost Tales (1976).

The map highlights 35 authors from the 35th state, writing during the time period 1863-2003, plus a West Virginia site often associated with them or their work along with a literary distinction. These authors and their works offer samples of some of the most significant imaginative literature written by authors of the state. In the printed version of the map the book symbol (see below) identifies the 35 authors selected for the front of the map; an asterisk * is used to identify them on this website.

The reverse side of the map is dedicated to three literary collaborators, each an essential link in preserving and promoting the literary history of West Virginia: Shirley Young Campbell, author, editor, playwright, poet, and catalyst for the founding of West Virginia Writers, Inc.; Jim Comstock, author, editor, historian, journalist, and publisher of West Virginia Hillbilly, The West Virginia Heritage Encyclopedia, and more; and William Plumley, author, editor, educator, and poet.

In addition to the 35 authors selected for the front of the map, all listed on the reverse side further represent the findings of a statewide key-informant survey and other determining methods. The authors are also representative of those writing from 1863-2003 in six genre categories [children's/young adult literature, drama, fiction, memoir, poetry, and screenwriting]. In most cases, only one genre, title, and award are listed per author. However, most of the authors write in many genres and have numerous awards and honors.

The title phrase on the map is from Louise McNeill's memoir The Milkweed Ladies. Pittsburgh, PA: The University of Pittsburgh Press, 1985, p. 8.

On the reverse side the map's intent is summarized with a Pearl S. Buck quote, "...and there were generations of us there, all belonging together."
  - Pearl S. Buck from My Several Worlds. NY: John Day Company, 1954, p. 51.

     Phyllis Wilson Moore, Author

Book Symbol = the book symbol used on the printed map

Contact Info

The Frank and Jane Gabor
West Virginia Folklife Center

on the campus of Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community and Technical College
1201 Locust Avenue
Fairmont, WV 26554
(304) 367-4403
wvfolklife@fairmontstate.edu
wvfolklife@pierpont.edu

Dr. Judy P. Byers
Dr. Judy P. Byers
, Director Frank & Jane Gabor WV Folklife Center,
  Abelina Suarez Professor, Senior Level,
  English & Folklore Studies
Fairmont State University
(304) 367-4286
jbyers@fairmontstate.edu
jbyers@pierpont.edu


Mr. Noel W. Tenney, Folk Cultural Specialist
   Frank & Jane Gabor WV Folklife Center
   and Museum Studies Program Coordinator
   Pierpont Community & Technical College
(304) 367-3606 

ntenney@fairmontstate.edu
ntenney@pierpont.edu

FSUNow Stories

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center will host a special event in April honoring the work of acclaimed poet Maggie Anderson and the legacy of former West Virginia Poet Laureate Louise McNeill.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Three West Virginia writers will read from their new books at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 5, at the Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center on the Fairmont State University main campus. The writers include Michael W. Cox, Jessie Van Eerden and John Van Kirk.

A question-and-answer session and book signing will follow the reading. Admission is free and open to the public. The event is sponsored by sponsored by the Office of Student Affairs at Fairmont State University and the Department of Language and Literature.

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Friday, January 24, 2014

Playwright, author and screenwriter Tom DeTitta has been named the 2014 Artist-in-Residence for Fairmont State University. With a specialty in historical drama, he has written two plays with content closely connected to this area, “Monongah,” which is about an immigrant family affected by the 1907 mine disaster, and “Street of Gold,” which is about a coal mining family in Western Pennsylvania.

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