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Fox Fest short story, poetry deadline Feb. 28

Staff report • Jan 22, 2018 at 3:00 PM

BIG STONE GAP — The deadline to submit entries for the Lonesome Pine Short Story Contest and Poetry Contest, popular facets of the annual John Fox Jr. Literary Festival, is Feb. 28.

The 42nd annual festival will be March 21 and will feature a presentation by guest author Sharyn McCrumb at 10 a.m. at Mountain Empire Community College’s Goodloe Center, located in Phillips-Taylor Hall.

The short story and poetry contests have been hits ever since they were included as part of the annual festival named in honor of Big Stone Gap resident John Fox Jr., who penned “The Trail of the Lonesome Pine” at his home, now a museum.

Those interested in obtaining guidelines to submit entries for the contests should contact Brandi McAfee at the MECC Foundation Office at (276) 523-7466. The Feb. 28 deadline for entries is 4:30 p.m.

Entry categories include adult, high school (grades 9-12) and middle school (grades 5-8). Contest rules are available on the MECC Foundation website (www.meccfoundation.org). Contest winners will be announced during the Literary Festival in March.

McCrumb is an award-winning author best known for her “Ballad” novels set in the North Carolina/Tennessee mountains including the New York Times Best Sellers “The Ballad of Tom Dooley,” “She Walks These Hills” and “The Rosewood Casket.”

McCrumb's latest novel, “The Unquiet Grave,” is a thoroughly researched history of West Virginia’s Greenbrier ghost.

McCrumb has collected a number of writing honors over the years from many quarters including the AWA Outstanding Contribution to Appalachian Literature Award, the Chaffin Award for Southern Literature, the Plattner Award for Short Story and AWA’s Best Appalachian Novel.

Books will be available for purchase and for McCrumb’s signature the day of her presentation. The presentation at the college will be followed by a reservations-only luncheon with McCrumb at the John Fox Jr. Museum. Tickets are $23 per person. Reservations can be made by calling the MECC Foundation.

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