Author Susan Gilmore To Be At Grace Episcopal Church Feb. 28

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

From Mark Twain to William Faulkner, from Flannery O’Connor to Fannie Flagg, a vast chorus of voices has sung (or drawled) in all possible keys about the wonders and oddities of Southern culture and history. Grace Episcopal Church invites the community to interact with a current member of that provocative choir on Feb. 28, when author and Grace parishioner, Susan Gregg Gilmore, signs books at a reception in her honor from 5-7 p.m. in the Ruth and Leon Balch Reading Room.

Ms. Gilmore writes fiction set in familiar territory to most of us – Ringgold, Sequatchie County and Nashville – and which documents Southerners’ heroic virtues, hilarious peculiarities, and challenging issues.  Her novels Funeral Dress, The Improper Life of Bezellia Grove and Looking for Salvation at the Dairy Queen will resonate with those who have lived in the region and have both the warm hearts and the psychic scars to prove it; not only does she present amusing portraits of individuals but also manages to show frankly some uncomfortable truths underlying matters of race, social strata, illusion, and the value of community in the course of her story-telling.

Ms. Gilmore grew up in Nashville, the child of an artistic mother and father who was a gifted raconteur, having been raised by a revival-bred preacher. She reported for the University of Virginia’s newspaper before graduating with a degree in history and taking a secretarial job for the Smithsonian Institution; she later earned a Master of Arts Degree in American Studies from the University of Texas. She and her husband have raised three daughters, and she has participated fully in the culture of Southern motherhood, baking cookies for bake sales, teaching Sunday School, and chairing fundraisers. At some point, her taste for history and affection for the South and its singular flavor, led her to attempt a screenplay, which turned into a novel. With three works of fiction currently in publication, she is now working on a fourth work, which will be a historical novel.

There is no charge for the event. Copies of Ms. Gilmore’s books will be available during the event through the church’s bookstore.

For more information, call 423 243-3257 or e-mail office@saygrace.net. 


Bob Tamasy: Laboring For The Right Things

Since I write my blog posts a couple weeks in advance, I’m now thinking about Labor Day since that’s when this will appear. For some reason the words to the Beatles’ tune, “A Hard Day’s Night,” come to mind: “It’s been a hard day’s night, and I’ve been working like a dog…. I should be sleeping like a log.” Actually, having a dog, the phrase “working like a dog” doesn’t compute ... (click for more)

Lee To Present Fall U-Church Series

Lee University’s U-Church series will offer another eclectic line-up for this fall, providing students with the opportunity to worship together in an atypical chapel format. The line-up includes Desperation Band on Sept. 14, Ballet Magnificat! on Oct. 26, and the student-led service “An Evening of Worship” on Nov. 16.  Opening the season on Sept.14 will be Desperation Band, ... (click for more)

Rhasean Lowry, 34, Charged In Death of 3-Year-Old Girl

Rhasean Lowry, 34, was arrested for abusing a three-year-old girl, and then criminal homicide after she died. Last Tuesday, the Chattanooga Police Department was called on a suspected child abuse case. Lowry took the victim to a local hospital and he stated the victim fell down steps. Doctors advised that the victim’s injuries were the result of blunt force trauma consistent ... (click for more)

City IDB Member Who Made Motion For $9 Million Black Creek TIF Had Not Lived In City For Years

A City Industrial Development Board (IDB) member who made the motion to approve a controversial $9 million Black Creek Tax Increment Financing (TIF) had not lived in the city for years, City Attorney Wade Hinton confirmed. Chris Ramsey, a BlueCross BlueShield official, was not present at an IDB meeting on Tuesday morning. Five other board members were. Citizen Helen Burns ... (click for more)

Decimating The Chattanooga Public Library - And Response

Corinne Hill claims that the library is just undergoing a normal weeding process for eliminating books.  She has bragged that she's responsible for the elimination of over 100,000 books - with more to go. "Normal" weeding is not rampant throwing away.  Yes, books go to the Friends for their sale - where they get $2 for a $75 book and thousands wind up being recycled ... (click for more)

The Many Lessons I Learned From Helen McDonald Exum

Helen McDonald Exum was my friend and mentor. As I think of her passing I can only imagine the celebration that is happening in heaven as the news of her arrival is being told. I am sure that there is a party that not only has she organized but that there is not a detail that has been left to chance. I am sure that it is the grandest of events, for you see, she has been planing ... (click for more)