presented by Lenoir-Rhyne University

Thomas Wolfe Center for Narrative

Thomas Wolfe Memorial

MAY 1 and 2, 2015




 What is your Asheville? Who makes it up? Who writes it? This Wordfest, you do.

This year, Asheville Wordfest is turning its focus on Asheville, a city at the brink of great change. What better time to take a day and write about it, honor it, tell about it, reflect upon it, find out what it is . . . before it changes any more.

A century ago, this place got hopping. The real estate boom was just about to begin, and the news was out around the world that this was the place to be. Luckily we had Thomas Wolfe here to write about it. Though he left when he was 15, one hundred years ago right now, to study in Chapel Hill, then onto Harvard, then onto the World, Asheville stayed with him. We'll be using his writings about Asheville as a touchstone for the writing sessions where you'll continue the story--with your own life, your own words. Bring notebooks and pens/pencils.

The City Narrative is the story of Asheville and the land it stands on, from its Cherokee history to now. Each of us is a part of this story, and the mission of this year's Asheville Wordfest (and probably all Asheville Wordfests to come) is to create spaces for people tell their part. In each of the 15 sessions on different topics, a trained facilitator will read a passage from one of the city's early narrators, Thomas Wolfe. We'll discuss the passage in an informal, reflective way, then write our own narratives of Asheville life. You will then share what you've written in a safe, nonjudgmental space. Not a workshop, a narrative session is just a chance to share something.

You can choose to have your narrative published or to keep it to yourself. To publish, email what you create to or give it to your facilitator.

No knowledge of Thomas Wolfe or "creative writing" required.

This is for your voice, your Asheville.