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July 21st BAG Meeting and Community Event

The Brevard Authors Guild will meet on Thursday 21 July 2016 at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room of the United Community Bank, Asheville Highway, Brevard.

After a half-hour business meeting, Bob Brooks will present “Getting Your Book Published.”  He will discuss the process of going from a writer to a published writer with reference to agents, publishers, self-publishing, and ebooks.  Tools useful for getting into print will be mentioned.

The public is welcome, and there will time for questions for the speaker and other authors.

Angie Stegall’s “Make Some Room” book now available

Angie Mattson Stegall has just published her fourth book, “Make Some Room: Powerful Life Lessons Inspired by an Epic 16-day Colorado River Rafting Trip Through Grand Canyon.”

Make Some Room Book and ManifestoThe book is available through Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats.

PAPERBACK

KINDLE

In June of 2013, author Angie Mattson Stegall and her then-boyfriend/now-husband Nelson spent sixteen days rafting 225 miles of the Colorado River through Grand Canyon. Having never done a trip like this before, she wasn’t really sure what to expect.

Thankfully, the friends who invited them prepared them well:

  1. Take everything you think you will need.
  2. Leave everything else behind.

Turns out, everything she needed fit into a bag about the size of a small Golden Retriever.

During their trip, their six rafts held the rest of the gear they would need: kitchen and food, bathroom setup (aka “Groovers”), and assorted emergency gear. The motto of Grand Canyon is “Pack it in; pack it out.” And that means EVERYTHING.

So, it went that they spent sixteen days sleeping under the stars and Milky Way, keeping track of trash and crumbs (called “microtrash”), and eternally trying to keep the sand out of her contact lenses.

Here’s what she learned during that trip:

  • It doesn’t take much to keep sixteen people happy. A filling meal three times a day plus some snacks goes a long way.
  • Wearing pretty much the same clothes for days on end isn’t a big deal.
  • Taking a bath (in the 49 degrees-cold river) every three or four days makes being clean all the sweeter.
  • Nature is all around and she is beautiful. Slowing down and paying attention is like creating the most delicious meditation + prayer milkshake.
  • The rapids were big and fast and the water was cold. Angie was scared shitless more than a few times. There was no option but to keep going. So, she did.
  • Laughter, conversation, and connecting with those sixteen people were a crucial part of each day.
  • Angie was surprised to realize she didn’t think about money on the Canyon. Except for one stop at Phantom Ranch (deep at the bottom of the Canyon) for postcards and lemonade, there was literally no place to even use money. If they “needed” anything, they traded for it. Beer for toilet paper. Beer for ice. Will swim for beer! It turned out beer was quite the bartering tool.
  • “Drink more water.” That was the answer for everything from general crankiness to major headaches.

Simplifying your life down to a bag and a boat showed her what was important. Angie fell in love with the simplicity and rhythm of each day.

The Make Some Room Manifesto

In a world where our modern lives tend to be chaotic, noisy, and over-scheduled, making some room can be a real challenge.

Angie and her husband Nelson found that their time on the Colorado River in Grand Canyon created the space and time for them to think about their lives very differently. This trip set the stage for Angie to write the Make Some Room Manifesto, which she’s sharing with you in detail in this book.

She champions not only understanding but also moving into ACTION. So, to help you learn how to make some room in your life or in your business, Angie decided to turn this into a “how to” book which focuses on the twenty ideas outlined in her Make Some Room Manifesto.

In simple terms: Angie wants to guide you to make some room.

Her wish is that everyone has the opportunity to have a Grand Canyon-like experience at least once in their lives. This book is her way of sharing her personal experience. Her hope is it hits you like a ton of bricks…or a two-by-four upside your head…or that it quietly but relentlessly tickles your subconscious like a gentle feather…something, anything that can wake you up to life and inspire you to begin living your life on purpose.

She believes you will benefit from what she has learned and discovered. Your only task is to focus on what resonates with you. Leave the rest behind.

One final note: Each chapter of the book contains stories about her time on the river and then goes “Beyond the Canyon” with ideas, action steps, and even checklists to help you focus on what’s essential for you.

It is available through Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats.

PAPERBACK

KINDLE

TCARTS and BAG Open Mic Night a Success

R.R. Brooks

R.R. Brooks

Bob Brooks read two scenes from his 2015 fantasy novel Justi the Gifted at the June 27, 2016 Open Mic Night at the Transylvania County Arts (TCARTS) Council building on Caldwell Street in Brevard.  Open Mic Night occurs each year on the last Monday in June and allows area writers to introduce themselves and read from their works for ten minutes.  Put it on your calendars for June 26, 2017.

The event was part of Arts and Culture Week and was co-hosted by TCARTS and the Brevard Authors Guild.  Readers included Bob, Bill Ramsey, a nonfiction essayist and storyteller from Hendersonville, and Rich Vanderveer, a poet from Asheville.  The few readers meant every presenter got a chance to speak twice.

There may have been light attendance, but the discussion was vigorous, covering such topics as inspiration, composition, writing methods, critique groups, and the value of oral presentation.  Writer-support groups such as Blue Ridge Writers Group, NC Writers Network, and the open-mic events monthly at the Hendersonville Library were discussed.  Authors exchanged business cards and exhibited books.  What’s more, wine was served.