This just out from Berea College’s Loyal Jones Appalachian Center:

Berea College’s Loyal Jones Appalachian Center is putting out a call for Appalachians to tell their story about how they thrive in the places they call home.

Today, some figures on the national stage look past Appalachia’s challenging, rich history and conclude that social and financial difficulties in the region must be the fault of its inhabitants. This impression is supported by highly-publicized, extraordinary tales of someone escaping difficult circumstances through luck and determination.  But what about the majority of Appalachians who grow up and make good and stable lives?  Our goal is to help those stories be told and heard.

Submissions should provide the author’s compelling life story that illustrates the challenges of coming of age, working, and living in the realities of family and community.  If your narrative features personal success in the face of adversity, it will be advantageous to acknowledge the impact of community, community institutions, and societal factors on your life.  The same applies in the other direction: family stories or stories chronicling a community often will benefit from a deeper look at your personal struggles and triumphs.  We also welcome essays that link one’s personal story to social issues and solutions in the region and nation.

The winning submission will receive a prize of $1,250, with a second place of $750, and a third place of $500.  Winners and finalists will have the option of being published by the Loyal Jones Appalachian Center on our website (

The contest will be judged by Silas House, an award-winning, best-selling novelist and the NEH Chair of Appalachian Studies at Berea College.

For more information, including deadlines and submission guidelines and details, see: