Chris Offutt is a Kentucky novelist who lives in Oxford, Mississippi, while teaching in the English department at Ole Miss. He is arguably best known for his memoir, My Father, the Pornographer (Simon and Schuster, 2015). Offutt describes how his father and mother collaborated in writing pornography in order toContinue Reading

Here in 2020, odd year it is, we’ve canceled everything. Like the rest of the world, our usual day by day is not our normal day by day anymore. Today is kind of an odd one, though, because I’m on the road. I’m taking a mini vacation of sorts. ToContinue Reading

Some time ago, my son and I toured the Museum of Appalachia in Clinton, Tennessee. And, let me tell you, it is a treasure trove of Appalachian everything – from the pioneer days onward. The museum is located within view of Andersonville Hwy, is surrounded by an abundance of nativeContinue Reading

One of my greatest joys is visiting museums. I love museums of all kinds but I’m particularly fond of author museums. It should come as no surprise that my bias leans toward Southern authors. (And, if I break it down further, I’d say, I’m even fonder of Appalachian authors.) AContinue Reading

Welcome, readers. We have now come to the end of our journey. I hope everyone has avoided our creatures thus far. Hopefully, this series has better prepared readers for any future encounters. Let’s explore and investigate the following creatures together. XVI. Tennessee Wildman   First Encounter: 1800s in McNairy County,Continue Reading

In part two of our series, we examine creatures from the Kentucky Hellhound to the dreaded Snarly Yow. Our journey takes us into moonshine country and skyward, then makes a daring turn toward the woods and on thoroughfares. Take care on this trek, lest you get lost and are foundContinue Reading

In your long hikes and woodland quests, have you ever heard some noise you can’t quite place? A growl, perhaps, or even a howl? Have you shuddered when leaves rustled or a twig snapped? Walking on your way home in dark hollers, did you have a creepy feeling that youContinue Reading

Their similarities were keen enough to define an archetype of the Appalachian writer at mid-20th century. Their differences were such as to make each a singular talent. Jesse Stuart, James Still, and George Scarbrough knew one another and admired each other’s work. All possessed shared experiences of growing up onContinue Reading

Now my mind was again filled with memories of my mother’s homemade cakes. Boy, they sure were good. I wondered how they all were – my sisters and brothers. I wondered how my father was doing. My father didn’t write much, but he didn’t have to. I knew by nowContinue Reading

**Warning:  Graphic Depictions of Violence in this post Have you ever met the devil in Appalachia? Alone in unnerving wooded areas day or night? The devil wears different disguises. For some, he is a brawny satyr with goat legs, bovine horns, and an arrowed pin tail. For others, the devilContinue Reading