The Lost State Writers Guild has been in existence about twenty years. It is a loosely-knit organization of writers and artists scattered over the Tri-State area of Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina. Members participate in several writing workshops during the year at monthly meetings, which alternate between the cities of Kingsport, TN, Johnson City, TN, and Bristol, TN/VA (see schedule page). They share information on markets, publishers, conferences, and book sale/signing opportunities and hear speakers knowledgeable in those subjects.
Members have participated in such events as the Roan Mountain Rhododendron Festival held at Roan Mountain State Park and the Appalachian Heritage Festival in Blountville, TN. Even when few books are sold, they enjoy these outings and visiting with other writers and vendors. In July/August for several years members have participated in events such as the Virginia Highlands Festival in Abingdon, Virginia. Many are also affiliated with the Appalachian Authors Guild, a Chapter of the Virginia Writers Club and join with that Guild in booksigning events arranged by members throughout the year at book stores, libraries, senior centers and book expos.
Curious about the origin of the name Lost State Writers Guild? Here is a brief overview of the Lost State of Franklin. Books on Tennessee history can give a fuller explanation.
The Lost State Writers Guild takes its name from that time in history when courageous settlers came to stake a claim in this new frontier with its changing name on the western side of the Appalachian Mountains. The background image of this and other pages on the site is the Watauga River at Sycamore Shoals. A group of a few hundred brave men crossed at these Shoals in 1780 on their way to fight and win the Battle of Kings Mountain against the British Army.
In 1784 a group of settlers met in Jonesborough, Tennessee, to form a new state which they called the State of Franklin, named for Benjamin Franklin. The United States government did not want Franklin to be a state. They thought this land should stay part of North Carolina. In 1790 the U. S. government dissolved the State of Franklin which became known as the Lost State of Franklin. On June 1, 1796, the Lost State of Franklin was incorporated into the newly formed state of Tennessee rather than North Carolina.