“The Garrett County Arts Council strives to support all forms of art in our communities,” said Karen Reckner, executive director of the nonprofit organization. “We are pleased to once again offer Ginseng as a platform for our local writers to publicly showcase their creative talents.”
Members of the arts council’s literary committee work together to collect entries of prose, poetry, and short plays, and then to judge works for inclusion in the book. While the council strives to make this an annual publication, this issue was late in being released.
“We had some unexpected hurdles in the production of this issue of Ginseng, and we apologize for the lateness of its arrival,” said Mary McEwen, president of the council and committee member. “While it has come out later than we wished, we do feel confident in its degree of literary excellence from our local writers, as well as its pleasing appearance.”
The writers whose works were selected for inclusion in the collection were as follows: Lori Stoll, Tom Dabney, Mikal McCartney, A.J. DeLauder, Bob Newman, Tom Dabney, M.C. Pratt, Jack W. Spencer Jr., Rose Gordy, Abby Arthur Johnson, Mercedes Pellet, and Samantha Roller.
This year’s issue was designed by M. Kendall Ludwig, CurlyRed Inc., Mountain Lake Park. Photography is used throughout the book, all by Penny Knoebel Besa. Members of the Ginsengeditorial committee for this publication were Jack DuBose, Mikey Virts, Melodee Hill, and McEwen.
For this issue, the arts council sought donors to help publish the book. The companies and organizations that made contributions to support the publication were the Grantsville Rotary Club, the Sincell Publishing Company, Deep Creek Times/Habco/Curbpics, and Grand Central Home Furnishings.
“We are grateful for the funding assistance given by these companies and the Rotary,” McEwen said. “Publishing is a costly endeavor, but one which we feel is important in our mission to support artists of all areas, certainly including literature.”
A “page to stage” event is being planned for the near future, with the selected writers reading some of their own work in a public setting, such as at Our Town Theatre.
“Our reading event will enable the public to experience the work directly from the authors, who will infuse the readings with their own inspirations and passion,” Reckner said.
The next issue of Ginseng is already in the planning stages, with entries to be sought within the next few months. All who enter the judging process with their works must be members of the Garrett County Arts Council, which is achievable by paying the annual dues of $25.
Both the page-to-stage event and the entry period dates will be announced when plans are finalized. For more information, persons may email the arts council at email@example.com or go to the website at garrettarts.com