Enjoy an evening with local author Renea Winchester from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, May 19, at the York Dining Commons at Lake Junaluska, 91 N. Lakeshore Dr., Waynesville. Winchester is the winner of the North Carolina Press Association Award, the Appalachian Writer’s Award and the Wilma Dykeman Award for Essay.

The evening is sponsored by the Friends of Haywood County Public Library and all proceeds benefit the local library system.

Winchester’s novel, "Outbound Train," won the Blue Ridge Writers Award in 2021, was nominated for the Crook’s Corner Book Prize, and was a finalist for Best New Fiction at the American Book Fest.

In April 2021, "Outbound Train" was translated into French and released internationally as "De l’autre Cote’ des rails." The Nova Aquitaine Independent Booksellers chose the book as a France summer read.

In 2022, Winchester will receive the Lucy Bramlette Patterson Award for authors who “elevate the world.”

Winchester leads intimate writing workshops for authors, and has served on the Atlanta Writers Board, Georgia Writers Association, and judges multiple literary awards. She is also the author of several nonfiction works including In the Garden with Billy: Lessons about Life, Love & Tomatoes and Farming, Friends & Fried Bologna Sandwiches, which was nominated for the prestigious SIBA award and earned her a nomination for Georgia Author of the Year.

Winchester is currently working on "The Mountains Remember," a historical novel based on her grandmother’s displacement from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. As a descendant of those who were displaced, Winchester is passionate about Appalachian heritage, preserving rare seeds, cultivating endangered plants and meeting new friends. She owns Butterfly Cove Botanicals, a medicinal herb farm, and teaches workshops on the benefits of plant medicine.

The author will sign books after the talk and will also have copies of her books for sale.

Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door, and include a drink ticket and heavy appetizers. Advance tickets are available for purchase at the Friends Used Book Shop at 101 W. Marshall St., Waynesville and at the Waynesville and Canton branches of the Haywood County Public Library.

For information, contact the Friends of the Haywood County Public Library at folhaywoodcounty@gmail.com, or visit the Friends Used Book Shop at 101 W. Marshall St., Waynesville. Starting in May, the book shop hours will be expanded to 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday – Saturday.

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