Capturing the life and history of Franklin and surrounded counties through fiction is one the passions that Nita Welch Owenby and Roy Owenby have in common, weaving real events, familiar places and facets of the rural life in their writings. With the presentation and book signing of their last two novels, this Saturday, June 1, at 11 a.m., the Friends of the Rickman Store are launching a series of conversations intended to provide exposure and recognition to our local writers.
Author Roy Owenby was born in the Nantahala Community. A Navy veteran, he graduated from Appalachian State University at age 40. After 35 years in various supervisory and management positions, he currently works part-time for the N.C. Department of Commerce. A prolific writer, he has written more than 200 short stories, many of which will be featured in an upcoming book entitled “Taters, Corn Shellers and Lard Buckets,” a caricature of Southern Appalachian life. Owenby will be presenting his latest novel “The Owl Knows,” a work of fiction based on the real vanishing of two women in the Nantahala National Forest. His novel successfully blends mystery, friendship and love evolving out of a series of desperate episodes that culminate in an exciting finish.
Writer Nita Welch Owenby was born near Franklin, and grew up on her parents’ farm by the Little Tennessee River. From Washington DC, to Arizona to Texas, her varied career has led her back to the farm where she was raised. She has written Christmas plays and numerous short stories about family life in the good old days. A regular contributor to the Burningtown News, she writes with feeling and love. Her first novel “The House of Rose” is about the life of a young girl, Valee Rose, who is abused at the age of 14 and finds herself without a family after her attacker burns down her home in search of valuables. As readers follow her life and the many struggles she faces, they will identify with her as she dreams of a better life. The reader is emotionally drawn into the book from the beginning and experiences anger and sadness, and finally, joy and happiness.
Neighbors and visitors are invited to join the Owenbys at the historic Rickman Store this Saturday, June 1, at 11 a.m. The Store is located on 259 Cowee Creek Road, seven miles north of Franklin by Hwy NC 28. For more information, call (828)369-5595 or visit Friends of the Rickman Store on Facebook.