Silas House Silas House: The History of Every Country

2010 schedule of events

Sept. 10 - Oct. 3

Anthology of Appalachian Writers Photographic Art, Scarborough Library Exhibit, Scarborough Reading Room.

Monday, Sept. 27

Screening of In Country with Bruce Willis, 7:00 p.m., Reynolds Hall, sponsored by the Shepherdstown Film Society. Following the screening will be a discussion of the social and political issues addressed in the film: “Soldiers at War and Coming Home.”

Tuesday, Sept. 28

“Another Kentucky Muse and Readings from the Anthology of Appalachian Writers, Volume II,” 7:00 p.m., Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies, Reception and book signing will follow in Scarborough Reading Room.

Wednesday, Sept. 29

Bobbie Ann Mason Visits with Martinsburg, Jefferson, Musselman, and Berkeley Springs High School students at Martinsburg High School, 9:00 a.m. in Martinsburg; “Mason Reading” at Martinsburg Public Library and Reception, 10:30 a.m. “Writers Master Class with Bobbie Ann Mason, 3:00-4:30 p.m., Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies; "The Critic’s Corner, with Bobbie Ann Mason," 7:00 p.m., Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies.

Thursday, Sept. 30

Scarborough Society Lecture and Awards Ceremony, “In My Country: the Fictional World of Bobbie Ann Mason,” 8:00 p.m., Erma Byrd Hall. Bobbie Ann Mason will receive the Appalachian Heritage Writer's Award and present a reading from her work; the WV Fiction Competition Awards will be presented by Bobbie Ann Mason.

Friday, Oct. 1

Evening reading of award-winning work of fiction at The Appalachian Heritage Festival Concert, 8:00 p.m., Frank Theater.

Saturday, Oct 2

Appalachian Heritage Festival activities and demonstrations, events, and evening Festival Concert, 8:00 p.m., Frank Theater.

Bobbie Ann Mason's Biography

While contemporary Kentucky writers and colleagues Wendell Berry, Gurney Norman, Ed McClanahan, and Jim Hall all traveled west for extended periods, Bobbie Ann Mason took an alternate route after her tenure as a University of Kentucky student.

Born near Mayfield, in the western part of Kentucky, Bobbie Ann had come east to UK, and she just kept heading in that direction. Her post-undergraduate path took her to New York City, where she indulged her interest in films by writing for movie magazines. Later she received her Ph.D. at the University of Connecticut, writing a dissertation on Vladimir Nabokov that evolved into the book Nabakov’s Garden.

Bobbie Ann’s more academic-leaning writings eventually gave way to the pursuit of fiction. And even though her eastward journey took her far away from the path that led her four male contemporaries to the Stanford writing program and other Western destinations, she always felt a connection among the five of them:

“I developed independently, but there was always a bond between me and the others I hadn’t actually known at UK,” she says. “And now I feel that there’s a kinship—this cluster of writers that came out of a certain place and certain kinds of experiences.”

—Tom Thurman