Deckle Edge: S. Carolina’s First Literary Festival

South Carolina is famous for being first in many situations. What comes to mind is our state was the first to succeed from the Union. (We all know how that turned out.) In addition, we were the first state to have a homegrown author of a caliber such as Pat Conroy. He is well known for the eight books he has written, four of which have been made into movies. Now we have bragging rights for the success of South Carolina’s first Literary Festival, Deckle Edge.

The term, deckle edge, describes the torn look of the edge of a book; the event was primarily a presentation of visiting authors, discussion panels, exhibitors, and other special events at several locations throughout Columbia, S. C. during February 19-21, 2016. The festival continues the tradition of the S.C. Book Festival and is a source of pride to the city of Columbia, South Carolina. Visiting authors such as Hank Philippi Ryan were present. She is the author of eight mystery novels.

In addition, Mary Alice Monroe, author of twenty novels, and Carla Damron, author of The Stone Necklace, One Book, and One Columbia’s choice for Columbia, SC book of the year were present. All were presenters for workshops at the Columbia Museum of Arts. Workshops were held at venues such as the Agape Conference center, the Woodrow Wilson Home, and Seibel’s House.

My most impressive experience was listening to Mary Alice Monroe, the NY Times best-selling author from Isle of Palms, as she described the intensity of her research for information for her novels. She is amazing at capturing the personality of the creatures of nature that she writes about, be they turtles, dolphins, Monarch butterflies or, most recently, pelicans and shore birds.

Her new novel, Low Country Wedding, is due for release in summer of 2016. Mary Alice is giving away a free wedding for some lucky female who applies and wins. The giveaway contest begins March 1.

Elaine AllcutJulia Elaine Allcut grew up in the small southern town of Yemassee, South Carolina. She graduated from MUSC School of Nursing in 1965 and the following year married Citadel graduate, Gregory Allcut. She is now retired and lives near Columbia, SC. She is active in her church, writing workshops, and the community; she loves to exercise by working out at the local YMCA with a group of women enrolled in Zumba and Yoga Classes, and is currently writing a sequel to her first book.

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