Second Short Story America Festival hits town

This week, the Second Annual Short Story America Festival and Conference will bring readers, authors and teachers of short stories together again in this new literary tradition in the Lowcountry. Scheduled for September 26-29 in Beaufort, the event includes readings by authors, workshops on writing stories and on understanding this great literary art form, book signings, the launch of “Short Story America, Volume Three,” and two great receptions to foster new and old friendships around a mutual passion for stories.

SSA festival_logo2013The schedule is loaded, and the all-events pass gets you into everything, so take a look at the expansive schedule, and then register to attend by going to www.shortstoryamerica.com, where you can get your all-events pass for only $50. No, that is not a misprint! Beaufort-based Short Story America wants to continue to have the festival in Beaufort every year, and so a friendly pass price is considered the best way to make it easy for local readers and writers to attend every year, and for visiting authors and readers to decide to travel to Beaufort.

This year’s visiting authors include Anne Serling, author of “As I Knew Him: My Dad, Rod Serling” (Rod Serling was a great short-story writer and the genius who brought short stories to the screen in The Twilight Zone); Richard Hawley, author of the award-winning novel “The Headmaster’s Papers” and the new collection from Short Story America, “The Other World: Stories”; Mathieu Cailler, the Los Angeles-based author who won the inaugural Short Story America Prize for Short Fiction; Winston-Salem’s Ray Morrison, author of the new collection “In a World of Small Truths”; prolific short-story writer Eric Witchey of Portland, Oregon; Phoenix’s Gary Lawrence, author of the new collection “Baffled”, San Antonio’s Marjorie Brody, author of the new psychological suspense novel “Twisted” and many short stories; Durham, N.C.’s Gregg Cusick, winner of the Lorian Hemingway Prize for Short Fiction; Buffalo’s James Goertel, author of the collection “Carry Each His Burden”; Atlanta’s pdmac, author of short stories and a novel due out in 2014; prolific San Antonio-based author Lawrence Buentello, Myrtle Beach’s D.G. Bracey, and other fine authors coming to Beaufort to join Beaufort-based authors Tim Johnston, Warren Slesinger, Katherine Tandy Brown, C. Steve Johnson, and star stage readers Jeff Evans, Bruce Doneff, Gail Westerfield, Mark Shaffer and Teresa Bruce.

Friday, Sept. 27, and Saturday, Sept. 28, offer all-day events, including an opening reception at the Lewis Reeve Sams House, an 1852 Historic Register home overlooking the waterfront.

The eight workshops offered touch on subjects such as dramatic dialogue, expressing emotions, jump-starting a story, and writing from the heart while working the industry angles.




Short Story America, 2121 Boundary St., Ste 204) 6 to 9 p.m.: Opening Readings


At Short Story America, 2121 Boundary St., Suite 204

• 10 a.m. workshop: For The Love Of It, For The Hell Of It (Writing from the heart while working the industry angles) Presented by James Goertel, author of “Carry Each His Burden”

• 11 a.m. workshop: How The Reader Breaks Your Writing: Presented by Eric Witchey, award-winning author

• 1 to 3 p.m.: Story Readings and Discussion (Classics and New)

• 3 p.m. Discussion: The Menu Of Narrative Points Of View

• 3:30-5 p.m.: First Annual Meeting: The Short Story Writers Association

(All writers invited, including new authors)

• 6 to 9 p.m.: Catered reception at the historic Lewis Reeve Sams House located at 601 Bay Street, hosted by Gwen And Scott Myers, with menu provided by leading local restaurants.

• After Party: Saltus River Grill, 802 Bay Street, Beaufort Waterfront.


(At USCB Center for the Arts, 801 Carteret Street)

• 9:30 a.m. Workshop: How To Teach Your Characters To Drive Stories: Presented by Eric Witchey, award-winning author of short fiction

• 10 a.m. Lecture: “Between Starvation And A Bellyful: William Cullen Bryant And The Short Story”: Presented by Frank Gado

• 11 a.m. Anne Serling, author of “As I Knew Him: My Dad, Rod Serling”: Join the author of the bestselling memoir about her father, Rod Serling, and offers readings from the book and a book signing afterward.

• 12:30 p.m. Workshop: Expressing Emotions: This hands-on workshop will explore techniques for expressing

character emotions in ways that maximize the reader’s emotional experience with Marjorie Brody

• 1:30 p.m. Lecture: Speaking Truth To Readers: Why The Short Story Form Endures with Richard Hawley, prolific author and educational leader, 2:30 p.m. Book Signing and Reading.

• 3 p.m. Workshop: “What’s Your Lecture About?” She Asked. “I Told You Before: Dramatic Dialogue,” He Said. We will look at five contemporary short stories and analyze the variance in their dramatic dialogue. Presented by Mathieu Cailler.

• 4 p.m. Workshop: Plant A Seed, Start A Story: In this workshop, tap into the festival’s energy by penning the beginning of a short story or even a novel. Presented by Katherine Tandy Brown

• 4 p.m. Story Analysis: Get More Out Of Any Short Story: Learn and apply a practical and easy 10-step method of short story analysis to improve and enhance your enjoyment, understanding, and writing. Presented by Gary Lawrence, author of “Baffled and Other Stories,” followed by a book signing.

• 5:30 p.m. What Editors Look For: Tim Johnston, Editor, Short Story America

• 6 p.m. Awards Reception (Libations and heavy hors d’oeuvres included)

• 7 p.m. Readings in the USCB Theater (Story readings by local performers)

• 9 p.m. Announcement: Winner of the Short Story America Prize for Short Fiction

• After Party: Saltus, 802 Bay Street, Beaufort Waterfront


(at Short Story America, 2121 Boundary St, Suite 204)

• 1 p.m. Write A Story Now: The prolific award-winning short-story writer leads attendees into the creation of their own original short stories. Presented by Eric Witchey

• 3 p.m. Children’s Story Hour: Authors and local readers share stories with children. This presentation is free to the public, so bring kids for an enjoyable experience with the wonder of stories.

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