Institute offers weekend workshop
for regional writers at Hanover College
native Wallis to discuss
Harlan Hubbard legacy in keynote address
(October 2006) Editor, writer, historian and teacher Don Wallis
grew up in Madison, Ind., yet he now resides in Yellow Springs, Ohio,
where he teaches humanities classes at Antioch University. His family,
however, still has a strong presence in Madison; his sister is Jane
Wallis Jacobs, owner-publisher of the Madison Courier, and Wallis himself
owns the Vevay Newspaper, which is operated by the Madison Courier.
As a child, Wallis knew who philosopher, writer and painter Harlan Hubbard
was. He even visited Hubbards home across the river in Payne Hollow,
Ky., many times. As an adult, Wallis became longtime friends with Hubbard
and his wife, Anna. We also worked together on a few projects,
Wallis said during a telephone interview in late September.
Wallis will speak about the Hubbards, both now deceased,
during his keynote address at the 14th annual Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana
Writers Roundtable, scheduled for Oct. 6-8 at the Jefferson County
Historical Society and Hanover College. The event is presented by the
Rivers Institute at Hanover College.
Wallis presentation titled, Harlan Hubbards Sense
of Place, will be at 7 p.m., Friday, Oct. 6, at the Jefferson
County Historical Society. The keynote address is free and open to the
At the Roundtable, which takes place Saturday and Sunday on the Hanover
College campus, writers will be able to participate in up to two of
the four available workshops.
These workshops will be for those interested in writing poetry, fiction,
creative nonfiction and documentary film. The registration fee for one
workshop is $85, while the registration fee for two workshops is $150.
These fees include the opening reception and breakfast and lunch.
Molly Dodge, Director of External Relations at Rivers Institute at Hanover
College and organizer for the Roundtable, said there are a limited number
of scholarships available for aspiring writers who would like to attend
the conference. She added that writers of any level, whether beginning
or professional, are welcome to attend.
Not only will students receive hands-on instruction through workshops,
they will be able to rub elbows with accomplished writers, such as Wallis.
Wallis has written and edited several books about the life and work
of Hubbard, including Oyo: An Ohio River Anthology, Harlan
Hubbard and the River, Shantyboat Journal and Payne
Writers Roundtable Weekend Schedule
Reception: 5:30-7 p.m. Oct. 6
at the Jefferson County Historical Society,
615 W. First St. 7-8 p.m. Keynote Address.
Roundtable Workshops: Saturday-Sunday,
Oct. 7-8 at Hanover College.
Information: (812) 866-6846 or www.riversinstitute.org
I want to keep the awareness of Hubbards values
alive, he said.
Wallis admired Hubbards lifestyle and his enlightened understanding
of ecology. The Hubbards lived off the land without electricity
or running water for more than 40 years. They surrounded themselves
with nature and art in a simplistic lifestyle that attracted followers
from all over the world.
His vision of the way people are going to have to live in order
to sustain life is true, Wallis said.
He added that Hubbard wanted to live close to the Earth; he did no harm
to it. He said Hubbard loved the river and the river life, and it was
that sense of place that gave his work a spiritual significance.
People sense his way of life had meaning and satisfaction others
long for, and that meaning comes through in all of his work.
Besides his work on Hubbard, Wallis has published other works and teaches
at several schools in Yellow Springs. He is the author of Children
of a Child Centered School, based on the progressive program at
the Antioch School, where children are trusted to use their natural
gifts. He teaches creative writing there. He also wrote All We
Had Was Each Other, an oral history of the black community of
In addition to Wallis, faculty for the conference includes several prominent
writers from around the region. David and Eulalie Dick of Louisville,
Ky., will offer the creative nonfiction workshop. In 1992, the couple
founded Plum Lick Publishing Inc. and have since produced 10 books including,
The View from Plum Lick, Home Sweet Kentucky
and Rivers of Kentucky.
Nikky Finney, a professor of creative writing at the University of Kentucky,
will conduct the poetry workshop. She has published several books of
poetry, including Rice, which won the PEN American Open
Book Award in 1999. Her 2003 The World is Round won the
2004 Benjamin Franklin Award for Poetry.
Joyce Hinnefeld, an associate professor of English at Moravian College
in Bethlehem, Pa., will teach the fiction workshop. Her work has appeared
in The Denver Quarterly, the Greensboro Review, 13th Moon and other
Tom Marksbury, who teaches American literature, creative writing and
film at the University of Kentucky, will teach the workshop for documentary
filmmaking. Marksbury has written seven documentary films that examine
the lives of several American actors, a music producer and author. These
films have been screened around the world. He has received a Wrangler
Award from the Cowboy Hall of Fame and the Al Smith Fellowship for fiction
for an excerpt from his novel, Shatterbrain.
The Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Writers Roundtable was formed in 1989
with the purpose of bringing together regional writers to consider and
explore their common history, experience and artistic heritage. It is
designed to help strengthen the regions sense of identity and
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