Date: Friday, Jun 3rd, 2022

Time: 6:00 pm

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Join area writers featured in Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, volume 24: Appalachian Witness as they read poems and essays, tell stories, and sing songs at 30 Public in Stuart’s Opera House on June 3, 2022 at 6:00 pm.

Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel is a publication of the Southern Appalachia Writers Cooperative (SAWC), aimed at encouraging and promoting the rich literary talent of our region. The anthology has been appearing annually for over 30 years and includes many emerging and seasoned writers.

You will have an opportunity not only to hear fine work, but to meet and talk with the writers, many of whom are your neighbors, and to buy copies of the anthology, as well as publications by individual writers.

For those that can’t make our in-person event, we’ll be livestreaming through zoom and the Stuart’s Opera House youtube page.

Register for the Zoom livestream.



Effective March 14th, Stuart’s Opera House no longer requires proof of vaccination or negative COVID test for entry to public events, and masks are optional for all patrons, staff, and volunteers. Click here to learn more


Featured Writers:

Jessica Weyer Bentley


Jessica Weyer Bentley is an Author/Poet. Her first collection of poetry, Crimson Sunshine, was published in May 2020 by AlyBlue Media. She has contributed work to several publications for the Award-Winning Book Series, Grief Diaries, including Poetry and Prose, and Hit by a Drunk Driver. Jessica’s work has been anthologized in Women Speak Vol. 6 (Sheila-Na-Gig Editions), Summer Gallery of Shoes (Highland Park Poetry), Common Threads 2020 Edition (Ohio Poetry Association), Appalachian Witness Volume 24 (Pine Mountain Sand and Gravel) and Made and Dream (Of Rust and Glass). She is also a 2022 Wolfpack Contributor of poetry for Fevers of the Mind.


Jane Ann Fuller

Jane Ann Fuller is a recipient of the James Boatwright III Poetry Prize. She co-authored Revenants: A Story of Many Lives, published with a grant from the Ohio Arts Council. Other publications include Atticus Review, BODY, One Art, Still, Pikeville Review, Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, The American Journal of Poetry, The MacGuffin, Verse Daily. Her work appears in the anthologies All We Know of Pleasure: Poetric Erotica by Women, Women Speak, and I Thought I Heard a Cardinal Sing. Her debut manuscript, Half-Life, was published by Sheila-Na-Gig Editions. Jane Ann was born and raised in Hocking County. Her ancestors helped found Marietta, OH.

Stephanie Kendrick

Stephanie Kendrick is the Major Unusual Incident Coordinator for the Athens County Board of Developmental Disabilities, a Village Councilwoman in Albany, a community organizer, and a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Her very tolerant husband and beautiful son keep her grounded and offer her the peace of mind to work on one of her great loves—poetry. She is the author of Places We Feel Warm (Main Street Rag Publishing, 2021), and In Any of These Towns, forthcoming from Sheila-Na-Gig Editions. She is the editor of “Periodical Poetry.”, and co- host of Athens County’s Thursday Night Open Mic. Her poems have appeared in Sheila-Na-Gig Online, Gyroscope Review & elsewhere. Visit her website


Wendy McVicker

Wendy McVicker is the 2020-2023 Poet Laureate of Athens OH, and a longtime teaching artist. Her most recent chapbook is Zero, a Door (The Orchard Street Press, 2021). She loves collaborating with other artists, and has been known to perform with musician Emily Prince, under the name another language altogether. Her children having grown and flown, she lives not far from the Hocking River with her husband and partner, John, and a Hemingway cat named Dora.


Chiquita Mullins Lee

Chiquita Mullins Lee lives in Columbus and works for the Ohio Arts Council. Nominated for a Pushcart Prize, her nonfiction, fiction, and poetry have appeared in literary journals including Pine Mountain Sand and Gravel, Falling Star Magazine, and Poetry in the Time of Coronavirus, among others, and her work is featured on the PBS American Portrait project. She won individual artist excellence awards in fiction, non-fiction, and playwriting from the Greater Columbus Arts Council and the Ohio Arts Council. Involved in local theater, Chiquita writes and performs with Wild Women Writing, is a member of the Southern Appalachian Writers Collective, and leads Word

Warriors creative writing ministry at New Covenant Believers Church. Her critically acclaimed play, Pierce to the Soul, premiered at the Contemporary American Theatre Company and toured Ohio with A Portable Theatre Company.

Deni Naffziger

Deni Naffziger’s first book of poems, Desire to Stay, was published by Stockport Flats Press and was nominated for the Weatherford Award. Her second book, Strange Bodies, will be published by Shadelandhouse Modern Press in April 2023. Naffziger’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in New Ohio Review, Atticus Review, Main Street Rag, Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, Pudding Magazine, Pikeville Review, Northern Appalachian Review, Asylum Magazine, and elsewhere. Raised in Ohio’s Appalachian Steel Valley, she has called Athens, Ohio her home for over 30 years. Locally she is best known for her 20-year writing collaboration with Passion Works Studio.


Bonnie Proudfoot

Bonnie Proudfoot has had fiction and poetry published in the Gettysburg Review, Kestrel, Sheila-Na-Gig, Pine Mountain Sand and Gravel, SoFloPoJo, the online edition of the New Ohio Review, and other journals. Her first novel, Goshen Road, was published by Swallow Press in January of 2020, and was selected by the Women’s National Book Association for one of its Great Group Reads for 2020. The novel was also long-listed for the 2021 PEN/ Hemingway award for debut fiction. Her debut book of poems (Household Gods, Sheila-Na-Gig Press) will be published in the summer of 2022.

Sherry Stanforth

Sherry Cook Stanforth is the founder and director of Thomas More University’s Creative Writing Vision Program, as well as a new venture, The Originary Arts Initiative, providing interactive educational and public arts programs for diverse (and underserved) populations in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky community. She is the managing editor for Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, the literary journal of the Southern Appalachian Writers Cooperative and a member of the Urban Appalachian Community Coalition. Her poetry collection Drone String (Bottom Dog Press, 2015) reflects the storytelling traditions, music and migration experiences of her Appalachian heritage. She is the managing editor of Riparian: Poems, Short Prose and Photographs Inspired by the Ohio River (Dos Madres Press, 2019). She performs in a 3-generation family band, Tellico, and enjoys hiking, beekeeping and studying native plants.

Jack Wright

Jack Wright has spent most of a lifetime exploring the culture of Appalachia.

He is known for his performing and the anthology Music of Coal: Mining Songs from the Appalachian Coalfields. Jack will read from his memoir-in-progress, The Boneless Baby & Other Jack Tales.

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