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Literary Festival 2009

Readings, book signings and theatre were all part of this year’s festival,

focusing on Writers as Evidence of Change

Literary Festival 2009 keynote speaker Tim O’Brien spoke to a crowd of 500 in TCC’s Roper theatre. Describing the writing process, he stressed life’s changes. Noting what he would write to his infant son, O’Brien used examples of wording that captures interest and meaning. He also touched on his life’s work which includes eight novels, many with roots to his time as a soldier during the Vietnam War.

Diverse and entertaining, faculty authors read from their works, to the delight of students and others. These published authors include (left to right, top to bottom) Rachel Ankney, Nancy Jolemore, David Kiracof, Bob Kunzinger, Sylvie Shapero, Doug Thiele, Tom Williams and John Williamson.

Virginia Beach native and TCC graduate Joe Tennis, an award-winning features writer for the Bristol Herald Courier, talked about his books, among them the critically acclaimed Beach to Bluegrass: Places to Brake on Virginia's Longest Road. The book features 58 tales along Highway 58, the road that stretches across Virginia from Hampton Roads to the Blue Ridge Mountains.

ED Jacob, head of TCC’s theatre arts, talked about and demonstrated the process to convert Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s epic poem, “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” to a play. TCC presented the play at the Roper in April. 

Stephen Katz, named 2008 Newspaper Photographer of the Year, demonstrates how photographs can tell the untold story of abuse and disease overseas. Katz, a staff photographer at The Virginian-Pilot and owner of WEYO, a marketing business that helps nonprofits’ outreach in Third World nations, has photographed images in over 40 countries, including two war zones.
Bringing a hush – and tears – to the audience . . . Reading excerpts from several of his poems including Neon Vernacular: New and Selected Poems, which won the Pulitzer Prize, Yusef Komunyakaa, professor and distinguished senior poet at New York University enthralled his listeners in two TCC talks. He debuts his first poetry-to-music CD this spring.