West Virginia native bringing tales of small-town Appalachia to light


GRAFTON—A West Virginia native will be paying a visit to the Taylor County Arts Council, Friday evening, and will be bringing with him stories from his debut collection, The Rope Swing.

The Rope Swing, written by Jonathan Corcoran, was published in April 2016, and is Corcoran’s way of portraying people and voices that are always heard.

Growing up in Elkins, West Virginia, Corcoran wanted to bring light to life in Appalachia, and even more so, to portray the struggles of gay individuals in small-town Appalachia.

“The characters in my book are straight and gay,” explained Corcoran. “I’ve received some good press for how I’ve portrayed LGBT folks in small-town Appalachia. It’s a subject that is often not written about.”

According to Corcoran, the premise of the book is quite simple.

“What happens to a town, a region, when the last passenger train ceases service,” questioned Corcoran.

He said the characters and town in his collection are loosely based on Elkins. He said the characters in his book face hard choices about life, love and even existence.

“I try to put characters on the cusp,” shared Corcoran. “On the edge of moments that will have an big impact on my characters’ lives.”

The Rope Swing can be ordered via WVU Press, Amazon and Barnes & Nobel.

The Taylor County Arts Council will be presenting An Evening with Jonathan Corcoran on Friday, March 17, at 7:00 p.m., at Gallery 62 West, located on Main Street in Grafton. The event is free and open to the public.

Corcoran will be reading excerpts from The Rope Swing, and will be available for questions. Please come out to support a native West Virginian, as well as the arts.

The TCAC would like to thank All Aboard Grafton for donating money to help support this event.


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