Creative Writing Workshop Series Offered at the Pearl S. Buck Birthplace in Hillsboro

Would you like to be a writer, or perhaps a better writer? As part of the Calvin W. Price Appalachian Enrichment Series, the Pearl S. Buck Birthplace Foundation is presenting three creative writing workshops in 2015. The workshops will be held at the Pearl S Buck Birthplace in the Sydenstricker cabin. The first of these workshops will be held on April 18th with a second one scheduled for June 26th and the last one on September 19th.

Kirk Judd, the Acting President of the Pearl S. Buck Birthplace Foundation explains the significance of the title of these creative writing workshops “Crossing the Threshold”.

“They’re based on finding the gateways to new understanding in your personnel writing” says Kirk, “coming from Pearl’s expressed desire to have her birthplace not be just strictly a museum but – and I am going to quote from Pearl here, she wanted her wish expressed in her book My Mother’s House that it should be quote ‘a living gateway to new thoughts and dreams and ways of life wherein art, music and education are promoted’ and we thought these workshops would be a really good way to honor that wish of Miss Buck”

Kirk talks about the significance of the house to Pearl S. buck.

“Pearl began to think of the home in Pocahontas County as the gateway to America” says Kirk. “she thought of that as when she stepped into the house that she was crossing a threshold from someplace out there in the world that was not safe – and you have to remember she was in china during the Boxer Rebellion, a very turbulent time – that she was crossing the threshold into a safe and happy place that represented America to her, and freedom.”

And so these creative workshops are designed to help participants also cross thresholds.

“And so these workshops are based on crossing that threshold in your personal expressions of creative writing” says Kirk. “How you step across out of yourself into the world of communicating how you feel to your audience.”

Kirk tells us about the first workshop.

“The first workshop is presented by Sarah Elkins that is April 18th, 2015 from 1 to 4:30 in the afternoon at the Sydenstricker cabin there at the birthplace grounds” says Kirk.

Kirk gives us hint about that first workshop.

“And the title of her workshop is the Gateway Between the Human and Natural Worlds” says Kirk. “She quotes Mary Oliver, who is a very well known poet. ‘You have to let the soft animal of yourself love what it loves’ and she’s going to use that poetry of Mary Oliver and others to invoke the natural world to kind of explore the human experience and how we cross that threshold from human to natural world –how we are drawn to what we love in nature as a way of knowing our own place in the world”

Again, the first workshop in this series will be held on April 18th. The other two workshops are scheduled for June 26 and September 19. Each of these workshops will be held from 1 PM to 4:30 PM at the Sydenstricker cabin at the Pearl S. Buck birthplace in Hillsboro, WV. All are free to the public and there will be light refreshments. No pre-registration is required.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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