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RPLA Showcase: K E Garland

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2016 Unpublished Creative Non-Fiction

The Transition by K E Garland

In “The Transition,” a daughter struggles with a three-year inner conflict to either show compassion towards her estranged and dying father, or to abandon him in his time of need.

At the 2016 Royal Palm Literary Award Banquet, author K E Garland won First Place in the Unpublished Creative Non-Fiction category. Each year at the RPLA Banquet, authors experience the joy of earning accolades for all the hard work that is often done in the privacy of the home with little to no recognition. We’re showcasing the best of the best with our First Place winners spotlight. Not only does RPLA recognize extraordinary talent, but we’re giving readers an opportunity to sample excerpts from the winning stories.

Click the link to read a sample:

Excerpt from The Transition

Q & A with K E Garland

Q: Where do you get your story ideas?

A: I’m a creative nonfiction writer, so my stories always come from real life. Typically, I write about authentic relationships and how people are affected by them. Sometimes it’s easier to see oneself in another person’s challenges, so I share my own experiences as a way to help people think about themselves and how they function in their own friendships and kinships.

Q: Anything in particular about your award-winning RPLA entry that you’d like to share?

A: “The Transition” was one of the easiest and hardest pieces I’ve written. It was easy in the sense that the words flowed through me. I knew it had to be written. The hard part (which was fleeting) was choosing to publicly share the story. As a nonfiction writer, who shares about herself, I always have to take a deep breath and decide if readers need to really read my soul’s story. In this case, I’m glad I decided to share it. Responses have been positive and supportive.

Q: Whom do you credit with inspiring your writing?

A: My mother received an English degree from UIC, so I credit her first. She passed on her love for reading and writing, and I’m forever grateful for that. There are also authors, such as Langston Hughes, who I admire. His essay, “Salvation” influenced me to be the type of writer that I am. He skillfully uses narrative elements to re-tell real events, which of course is what I aim to do. Other writers, such as Zora Neale Hurston and Ayana Mathis also inspire me as skillful, women writers who really know how to not just tell a story, but also carry it and make you want to read it.

Q: Any tips for new writers?

A: Don’t allow anyone to discourage you from writing, even if the anyone is yourself.

Thank you for sharing, K E, and congratulations! Visit her website: www.kwoted.wordpress.com

A message about supporting literacy in Florida:

If every member of FWA went to Smile.Amazon.com, chose Florida Writers Foundation, Inc. as their charity and, instead of logging into Amazon.com, logged into Smile.Amazon.com, FWF would receive 0.5% of the purchase funds. Every time.

We could significantly fund the literacy efforts of our organization. No money out of your pockets…just some invested time to set this up.

How easy for us to make a difference. To see all of our work, please read the pages of our website www.floridawritersfoundation.com. You’ll be proud.

Tom Swartz, President, FWF

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Follow Bria Burton:

Blogger at St. Pete Running Company

Award-winning author Bria Burton lives in St. Petersburg with her wonderful husband and two wild pets. They will soon welcome a baby boy (their first) in November 2017. Her fiction has appeared in over twenty anthologies and magazines. Her novelette, The Running Girls, is a 2017 Royal Palm Literary Award Finalist. Her novella, Little Angel Helper, won a 2016 RPLA. She has earned two First Place RPLAs for unpublished manuscripts. While she writes, her dog and cat do their best to distract her, which is why they star in her family-friendly short story collection, Lance & Ringo Tails. She’s a blogger and customer service manager at St. Pete Running Company. As a member of the Florida Writers Association, she leads the St. Pete chapter and serves on the statewide FWA Board. She’s also a member of the Alvarium Experiment, a by-invitation-only consortium of outstanding authors who created The Prometheus Saga, Return to Earth, and The Masters Reimagined anthologies.
Website www.briaburton.com

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