‘Write by the Rails’,’Writers for a Cause’ Hold Author Signing at Emoni’s Dessert Bar and Cafe


Authors Steve Clapp and Carol Covin sign autographs at Emonis Dessert Bar and Cafe in Dumfries.

Write by the Rails, a networking group for Prince William County writers, hosted a book signing Friday from noon to 6 p.m. at Emoni’s Dessert Bar and Café’ in Dumfries where authors Steve Clapp, Carol Covin and Katherine Goddardt signed and sold copies of their recently published books.

Cindy Brookshire, cofounder of the Manassas based writer’s group, Write by the Rails, organized the event in cooperation with Writers for a Cause to promote both organizations on the eastern side of Prince William County.

Brookshire organized the Write by the Rails to “lift up the writing community.”

“Everything else got raised up when the Hylton Performing Arts Center came in, but there’s no recognition for writers, its always about artists and performers ,” Brookshire said.

Brookshire is looking to bring more opportunities to local writers, while creating building a supportive writing community in Prince William County.

Write by the Rails offers its members access to information about events and seminars, valuable networking and advice in a time when the industry undergoing rapidly changes with the introduction of ebooks and the increased opportunity to self-publish.

“There’s the writing but then there’s the business part of it, so it’s great to get the advice of other people to pull each other up,” Brookshire said.

At Friday’s event world journalist and international activist Steve Clapp displayed and signed his book, “Africa Remembered: Adventures in Post-Colonial Nigeria and Beyond,” a memoir of the time he spent as a Peace Corps volunteer in Nigeria in the 1960’s. The book includes numerous color photographs Clapp took of places and people he met while working as an English teacher in a Nigerian boarding school.

Seated next to him, Carol Covin displayed nonfiction her book, “Who Gets to Name Grandma: the Wisdom of Mothers and Grandmothers”, which explores how women and their children adjust when grandchildren are born. In researching her book Covin interviewed mothers and grandmothers, asking them they think the role of the grandmother should be in a child’s life.

Covin, herself a grandmother, thought she’d like to be called “Glam-Ma,” but when she shared that idea with her son, he was less than thrilled. The title of her book refers to first chapter, thus refers to the challenging question of what to call grandma.

“They wanted me to be ‘Grandma. They thought I’d be honored,” Covin said.

Katherine Gotthardt, who is both the author of Approaching Felonias Park and founder of Writers for a Cause, said she created Writers for a Cause to combine her two passions for writing and community service.

A portion of the proceeds from the sales of “Africa Remembered” will benefit the Peace Corp Nigeria Alumni Foundation; proceeds from “Who Gets to Name Grandma” will be donated to Sky Blue Pharmaceuticals, a Bristow-based LLC Covin and friends began to bring promising cancer treatments to clinical trials; and proceeds from “Approaching Felonias Park” will be donated to various Prince William and Manassas charities (a complete list of charities is available at Writers for a Cause).

This article was written by contributor Leigh Giza and editor Stacy Shaw. Photography by Cindy Brookshire.

© 2012, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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