Roberts Library To Host Book Talk With Local Author

Thursday, October 12, 2017
Janie Dempsey Watts
Janie Dempsey Watts

Janie Dempsey Watts’ stories may be fictional, but they draw from real life experiences, and real life does not always end how we want.

Her latest book, “Mothers, Sons, Beloveds, and Other Strangers,” a collection of short stories that feature people facing journeys, will be the subject of an upcoming book talk. The event is Thursday, Oct. 26, at 6 p.m. in Dalton State’s Roberts Library. The book talk is free and open to the public.

“These 15 short stories were inspired by people and situations I encountered in the South, California, and Europe,” said Ms. Watts, who enjoys working with students as a part-time writing lab instructor at Dalton State. “All explore relationships, and feature characters facing inner and outer journeys with unexpected endings. Some of the stories are humorous, some are romantic, and others are edgy.”

Ms. Watts says that some of her stories may take readers outside of their comfort zones. Her stories “Rotten Apples,” “Lavanderia Automatica,” and “Journey to Yanu” are among these.

Ms. Watts was born in Chattanooga, but spent much of her young life at her grandmother’s farm near Taylor’s Ridge in Catoosa County. She moved to California to pursue a dream in journalism; there she received her bachelor’s degree at Berkeley and master’s at University of Southern California.

“I have written for newspapers, magazines, and I had my own column for nine years with ‘Catoosa Life Magazine,’" said Ms. Watts. “Some of my non-fiction work was published in the ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ series, ‘Guideposts,’ ‘Christian Science Monitor,’ and ‘The Los Angeles Times.’”

After moving back to the South, she returned to living near her grandmother’s farm. She is now married with two children and three grandchildren.

Ms. Watts works include two novels, “Moon Over Taylor’s Ridge” and “Return to Taylor’s Crossing.” She has been recognized for her works, having received awards from the Knoxville Writers Guild in 2015 and the Appalachian Writers Series in 2014, among others. 

Janie Dempsey Watts
Janie Dempsey Watts


Weekly Road Construction Report

Here is the weekly road construction report for Hamilton County:  I-75 North Exit 1 interchange reconfiguration project at mile marker 1: Work on this project continues. The project will result in a reconfiguration of the exit ramps and will combine both northbound exits (1A & 1B) into one, which will allow drivers to turn both east and west on Ringgold Road at a signalized ... (click for more)

Girl Scout Cookies To Be Delivered Saturday

Over a million boxes of Girl Scout Cookies are arriving across the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians service area for pickup by volunteers. Local volunteers are counting, sorting, and delivering the cookies to waiting troops….who will bring the treats to their customers. Customers will begin getting their cookies within days.  For those that didn’t make an ... (click for more)

Erlanger Has Unique Ribbon Cutting For $16 Million Heart And Lung Institute

Erlanger Health System unveiled its new $16 million Heart and Lung Institute on Thursday with a unique ribbon cutting. Dr. Larry Shears, a renowned heart surgeon who was recruited for the center, used the Da Vinci robot that he often operates with to clip a ribbon by remote control. The "hospital within a hospital" is on the fourth floor of the Baroness Erlanger campus on E. ... (click for more)

City Files Petition To Turn Confederate Cemetery Over To Sons Of The Confederacy

The city of Chattanooga has filed a petition in Chancery Court asking that management of the Confederate Cemetery be turned over to the Sons of the Confederacy. The Sons of the Confederacy, a group that has long taken care of the cemetery, joined in the petition. The cemetery is located by the UTC campus. It is beside the Citizens Cemetery and the Jewish Cemetery on the old ... (click for more)

Reflections On Billy Graham

Sandra and I are saddened this morning after learning of the death of Billy Graham. We rejoice today, because Mr. Graham once said "It will be reported that Billy Graham has died, but that won't be the truth. He said the truth is that he had only moved to a new location".  I remember when we named 15th Street as Billy Graham Avenue, his daughter Gigi came for the dedication ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Me & Billy Graham

For several years in my life it seemed my bad arm and I spent more time at Mayo Clinic than we did in my own house. I hold the record for the most different infections in an elbow at the same time, and my medical charts never had my name on them, instead I was simply, “Mr. Complication.” One morning in particular I spent a horrible three hours in the “nerve conduction lab” with ... (click for more)