On May 3, more than 50 artists and writers from Macon, Jackson and Swain Counties and the Qualla Boundary packed the downstairs conference room of Bradford Hall at Southwestern Community College’s Jackson campus. It was a special occasion for the Western North Carolina artists, as it honored the entries submitted for SCC’s periodical Milestone.
Last September, SCC began accepting submissions for the 2010-11 edition of Milestone, a biennial art and literary review published by SCC. This year marks the publication’s 12th anniversary.
“It’s been a long, strange journey. But all of the smiling faces make it worthwhile,” said SCC faculty advisor Owen Gibby to the room of artists. “This celebration is about you.”
Milestone showcases the works of local writers and visual artists, in essence reflecting the creative talent of the region, according to Gibby, who headed this year’s committee which waded through more than 100 entries to find the best of the best. “We’ve had a lot of great submissions, so it was hard to choose,” he said.
More than ten works from prose and poetry and more than 40 works of art are bound within this year’s Milestone pages. First and second place prizes for cover art, visual art, poetry and prose were given out at the meeting.
This year’s Milestone is a commemorative edition of the periodical. The 2011 submissions are accompanied by a retrospective glimpse of the publication’s 12- year history, tracing the Milestone’s growth since its inception in 1998. All artists who have been featured in the publication thus far will be recognized.
The applicants attended a banquet in their honor on May 3, where cash prizes were awarded for best poem, short story, visual art and cover art.
Milestone first place winners
Cover art: Shannon Cronkite
Visual: Paul Slagle
Poetry: George Frizzell, for his work “Voice and Whisper (My Return)
Short Story: Billie Joe Rich, for his work “Off Rez”