The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

October 27, 2013

Workshop at NRCTC to draw inspiration from Pearl S. Buck


— LEWISBURG — Pulitzer and Nobel Prize-winning author Pearl S. Buck was best known for her writing about China, especially in her beloved novel “The Good Earth.” But her roots were in the Greenbrier Valley of West Virginia.

In November, New River Community and Technical College will offer a writing workshop inspired by Buck’s writing about West Virginia.

The workshop, “Writing with Pearl,” will be taught by noted local author Belinda Anderson and will be 2 to 4 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, at New River’s Workforce Education facility in Lewisburg.

Buck was born in Hillsboro in 1892, but when she was 3 months old, the family returned to China where her parents were missionaries. She spent much of her life there until 1934, and she never lost her interest in and affection for the Chinese people.

In a memoir she said she lived in “several worlds,” one a “small, white, clean Presbyterian world of my parents,” and the other the “big, loving merry not-too-clean Chinese world.”

Anderson said the workshop “will examine how the seemingly mismatched patches of Pearl Buck’s life are part of the tapestry of her creativity. Along the way, participants will be prompted to examine the patchwork pieces of their own life to see how they can use them to weave patterns of their own — as stories, essays, poems or other narrations.”

Tuition is $38, and preregistration is required by Nov. 1.

For more information or to register, contact the New River Community and Technical College Office of Workforce Education at 304-793-3001 or 304-793-6101.