Writer Profile

Picture of Jim Minick

Jim Minick


540-831-5179 or 5614

Short Biography:
In addition to the memoir, The Blueberry Years, Jim Minick is the author of two books of poetry, Her Secret Song and Burning Heaven, winner of the Book of the Year Award from The Virginia College Bookstores Association. Also he has written a collection of essays, Finding a Clear Path, and edited All There Is to Keep by Rita Riddle. Minick has won awards from the Appalachian Writers Association, Appalachian Heritage, Now and Then Magazine and Radford University, where he teaches writing and literature. His work has appeared in many publications including Shenandoah, Orion, San Francisco Chronicle, Encyclopedia of Appalachia, The Sun, Appalachian Journal, Bay Journal, Wind, and The Roanoke Times. He lives in the mountains of Virginia with his wife and four dogs.

Works in Books
?Native and Citizen: An Interview with Wendell Berry? reprinted in Conversations with Wendell Berry (UP of Mississippi).

?Frank X Walker,? ?Marcos McPeek Villatoro,? ?Alternative Farming Techniques,? ?Wendell Berry,? and ?Richard Hague.? Essays in The Encyclopedia of Appalachia.

Recent Essays and Poems
February 5, 2008 ?Playing Hide-and-Seek with Owls.? Roanoke Times New River Current.

January 8, 2008 ?To Flush or Not to Flush: The Moral Dilemma of Bathing Our Feces? co-authored with Sarah Minick. Op-Ed for the Bay Journal News Service distributed throughout the mid-Atlantic.

December 2, 2007 ?Making Baskets from the Woods.? Roanoke Times New River Current.

November 13, 2007 ?There Are No Sides? as ?In Mountain Top Removal, Which Side Are You On?? Op-Ed for the Bay Journal News Service.

August 2007 ?Flight Over Big Branch? and ?Sycamore on Big Branch.? Poems in Nantahala Review 3.02 (online).

August 7, 2007 ?Eco-Forestry, A Clear-cut Idea.? Op-Ed for the Bay Journal News Service.

Spring/Summer 2007 ?Chainsaw Activist.? Essay in Appalachian Journal.

May 29, 2007 ?Lead-foot Nation.? Op-ed for the Prairie Writers Circle distributed nationally. Published in these and other outlets: Baltimore (MD) Sun,
Hartford (CT) Courant, Grand Island (NE) Independent, Grand Forks (ND) Herald, Scottsbluff (NE) Star-Herald. Amarillo (TX) Globe-News (with art). Web: Counterpunch, Common Dreams, EV World, Diesel Technology Forum, Rural Messenger.

Spring 2007 ?Grandpa?s Berries? essay in Rivendell #4.

April 12, 2007 ?Sheet Music.? Op-Ed for the Bay Journal News Service.

Critical Description of Work:
Any time spent with children illustrates that every person is born with a creative spark, a sense of wonder, and a desire to participate in the world?s plenty. Often this spark is snuffed out by the cares of the world, but for me, when I?m writing, I?m engaged and alive. I love to discover the contour of a sentence just as I might hike into a new cove of poplars, amazed by the beauty, but also curious to see what lies further on. So writing is like hiking into the mountains, into the interior wilderness of the self and the land which sustains us. But to not use this gift of words to speak out in defense of these many threatened places is ultimately a sin. So to not write ? for myself and for the love of the world ? is to not live, that simple.