The Kentucky Derby will be run this Saturday in Louisville. The thoroughbred horse race, now 140 years old, is one of the country’s legendary sporting events, but it also played a major role in spawning a new kind writing style, created by another Louisville product, the late Hunter S. Thompson.
As Rick Howlett of Here & Now contributing station WFPL in Louisville reports, there’s a new appreciation for the founder of Gonzo journalism in his native city and state.
An organizer of an upcoming book festival in Bowling Green says it’s becoming more of a challenge to get authors at larger publishers to appear at events for free.
Kristie Lowry is literary outreach coordinator with WKU Libraries, and an organizer with the Southern Kentucky Book Festival. She says book companies have cut their budgets related to book tours and marketing campaigns.
“So getting the authors to come to an event like ours for free, which would have been a little easier back in the day, is harder to do now,” Lowry told WKU Public Radio. “And Penguin and Random House have their own speaker bureaus now, so they market their authors, but you have to pay a fee in order to have them come into town.”
Lowry says another growing trend in the literary world is the rising number of self-published authors. She says many self-published writers in the southern Kentucky region, like Allison Jewell and Jennie Brown, have loyal followings and are well-received when they appear on panels at local book festivals.
Let's take a musical road trip through the American South. Think of yourself crowded into the back of the car, next to the guitar case. The driver is Rosanne Cash, whose new album was inspired by her Southern travels in the Mississippi Valley.
For five days in October a group made up of both student and professional photojournalists made their way to Owensboro to find interesting people and stories that could be told through still and video images.
WKU Photojournalist-in-Residence Josh Meltzer, who helps direct the Mountain Workshops, met WKU Public Radio’s Kevin Willis at the gallery to talk about how some of the images came to life.
It's been a good couple of months for author and WKU English Professor David Bell.
He recently won the Le Prix Polar International de Cognac, a prestigious French literary award given to the best crime novel published by a non-French author, for his 2011 book Cemetery Girl. His most recent book, Never Come Back, was published in October.
Never Come Back tells the story of Elizabeth Hampton, who--in the book's opening pages--arrives at her mother's home to find police detectives and crime scene investigators.
David Bell spoke to WKU Public Radio about the origins of his new work, and how Bowling Green and his parents have influenced his writing.
Where did you come up with the idea for your new book?
Tom Hunley is out with a new collection of poems entitled Scotch Tape World. The associate professor of English at WKU was nice enough to stop by our studios Thursday to talk about what it’s like to get poetry published these days, why he chose poetry in the first place, and the inspiration behind Scotch Tape World.
Here are some excerpts from our interview:
Scotch Tape World was published as a chapbook. What is that, exactly?
"A chapbook is a sort of intermediary step for poets between publishing poems in journals and publishing a full-length book. So they're made in smaller print runs, and sometimes they're handmade."
What is it like trying to get poetry published in the year 2013?
"It's pretty difficult to get full-length books printed, in particular. Usually you have to enter contests that have reading fees. There's no such thing as an agent in poetry. You're your own agent."
Michael Morris is a man with a passion for southern fiction. His latest book is called Man in the Blue Moon, and he is in Bowling Green Thursday promoting the new work, and speaking to different organizations around town.
Man in the Blue Moon was the fall selection for the SOKY Reads! program, a community "one book" reading project in southern Kentucky.
Morris stopped by the studios of WKU Public Radio to talk about writing southern fiction, and how he got into writing late in life.
Here are some excerpts of our conversation:
You're giving a writing workshop today at WKU about writing southern fiction. What's distinctive about southern fiction? What makes it stand out from other genres?
“I just think the way we speak is different, obviously. That stands out. There are other aspects to the south that you don’t find in other places in the country. A lot of it has to do with the food. You know, we plan a big celebration around our food—the Sunday dinners."
"You know, William Faulker said the difference between the north and the south is that in the north the crazy relatives are hidden in the attic. In the south, we put them on the front porch and let them wave to everybody."
The Nashville Symphony has reached agreement with the Nashville Musicians Association on a new one-year labor contract.
The pact reduces the pay of the musicians by 15 percent and is effective immediately.
The ratification comes after months of negotiations between the cash-strapped symphony and its performers. The pay cut is similar to that in total compensation imposed earlier upon members of the symphony administrative staff.
Violinist and union steward Laura Ross said the musicians ratified the contract because they believe their community role is important.
Symphony President & CEO Alan Valentine said the organization is grateful for what he termed the musicians' "spirit of shared sacrifice."