Letter from The New Family Custodian

From the Family Custodian: 

From birth, I crawled the halls of this home owned by my Great Uncle, Melvin Chapman Bowers (Uncle Chap), whose grandfather Job II, an abolitionist and religious pacifist and publisher, laid out the town where the old hotel lies, after renaming it from West Bowersville to Canon, GA. I played in the fertile hills surrounding The Bowers House in the county founded by my 7th great grandfather, Job Bowers The First, who was a Revolutionary War hero killed by The Tories while on leave for the birth of his only son. I gazed in wonder at the stain glass window images installed by Uncle Chap’s father who brought The Universalist Church to Georgia where it is still active 125 years later. 

I am proud that both of my mother’s parents were born in these parts, and grateful to my Bowers relatives and friends who helped me get started as the new family Custodian of this paint chipped, sprawling homestead. My cousins, Ellen Bowers Davenport (a native of Canon) and Phebe Bowers Armas, assist in running the lodging and retreat operations. My loving partner, Dorjan Williams, is The Bowers House Program Director also executive producer of ‘Bowers Hour’ episodic broadcasts featuring the work product and creative output of our residents via their musical concerts, art workshops, literary guild activities and readings and documentation of resident artists’ retreats and activity.

As 2022 rolls in we are facing and discovering necessary health precautions, crucial restoration and funding opportunities, university and professional sponsorship affiliations. We are restoring the historic registry commercial buildings on our city block and expanding our reach and scope and enhanced exposure via programming through ‘Bowers Hour’ and expanding community involved entertainment, enlightenment and activities. The Bowers House offers retreat directors, arts organization and artist/writer residents lodging and peaceful solace to work and focus their creativity. History buffs and curiosity seekers can rent rooms or the entire home when available. Our mission is to offer residencies and encouragement to multicultural/ minority/ underserved writers and creatives via sponsorships and donation supported by visiting guest stays and established retreat and lodging/event rentals. 

Several key creative Ambassadors including Jonathan Hibbert and Marvin Jackson and Roumena Georgeiva (music), Mary Anne Mitchell (photography), Kim Shockley Karelson and Linda Mitchell (fine arts painting) and Max Woo (dance), and many other supporting Ambassadors listed herein, can help you customize your retreat, overnight workshop, artist residencies and lodging requests. 

We appreciate your contribution to our mission by staying at and supporting The Bowers House. We try to ensure your optimized retreat or lodging experience and are prepared and adaptable in setup for your group’s area of interest. Please call me at 954-888-8948 to arrange your stay at

THE BOWERS HOUSE 100 Depot Street Box 74, Canon, Georgia 30520.

Anne Pancake – Reading from her works, April 21 @7PM

author of “Creative Responses to Worlds Unraveling: The Artist in the 21st Century” (Fall 2013), and the novel, “Strange As This Weather Has Been (2007)


Ann Pancake—fiction writer, essayist, and environmental activist—will read from her work on Monday, April 21, at 7 PM, followed by a talk and short reception. Although Pancake currently lives in Seattle, Washington the West Virginia native’s writing, political efforts, and heart remain firmly focused in her home state, where the coal mining industry—in particular the highly controversial process of mountaintop removal—has both supported and devastated the populace in many areas.

Her first book was Given Ground (2000), a collection of short stories published as the winner of the Bakeless Prize. Pancake’s novel Strange As This Weather Has Been (2007) won the Weatherford Award, was a finalist for the Orion Book Award, and was named one of the top ten fiction books of that year by Kirkus Reviews. Wendell Berry termed this work “one of the bravest novels I’ve ever read.”

Pancake’s recent Georgia Review essay, “Creative Responses to Worlds Unraveling: The Artist in the 21st Century” (Fall 2013), worries the hows and whys of what a writer might do in the face of the huge complexities of environmental degradation: “I believe literature’s most pressing political task of all in these times is envisioning alternative future realities . . . a way forward which is not based in idealism or fantasy, which does not offer dystopia or utopia, but still turns current paradigms on their heads.”

Join us for The Bowers House Writers Guild

The Bowers House Writers Guild offers encouragement to local and visiting writers whose writing covers a range of genres: local and personal history, personal memoir, adult and juvenile poetry, book reviews, journalism, newspaper and magazine articles, short stories, essays, how-to books, fiction and non-fiction. The Guild provides members the opportunity to meet writers with similar interests, to meet together, to become good friends or to enjoy the company of friendly acquaintances.

• Meeting Outline

Writer’s Craft – discussion and exercise

More about Show Don’t Tell See Article “Thought Verbs”
Discussion of writing terms (Jargon)

Member’s projects

What are you doing – how is your progress – how can we help?

Readings – members share new work

Group Projects – Discuss potential projects

General discussion – writing topics, somewhere between Once upon a time and They lived happily ever after.

Next Month

Suggestions for next meeting and future meetings

Indispensable Wisdom and Cautionary Advice for Writers.

South Carolina short-story writer and novelist George Singleton is one of the finest and hottest fiction writers in the country at this time – “a big-hearted evil genius who writes as if he were the love child of Alice Munro and Strom Thurmond,” writes Tony Earley.

A Georgia Review discovery some 20 years ago, Singleton has since published four collections of short stories, two novels, and an irreverent how-to book titled Pep Talks, Warnings, and Screeds: Indispensable Wisdom and Cautionary Advice for Writers. His other titles, which in themselves provide an intriguing introduction to his worldview, include The Half-Mammals of Dixie, Why Dogs Chase Cars, Drowning in Gruel, and Work Shirts for Madmen. A recent recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, Singleton has had work published and reprinted in such magazines as the Atlantic Monthly and Harper’s, and in anthologies like New Stories from the South and Surreal South. He lives in Easley, South Carolina.

Playwright Cedric Liqueur wrote his one-man show

Playwright Cedric Liqueur wrote his one-man show, “Satchel” during a recent writer’s retreat at the Bowers House. The play is based on Satchel Paige, considered the greatest pitcher in the history of the Negro Leagues. Paige went on to play in the Major Leagues and in 1971, was the first player from the Negro leagues to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Liqueur, a member of London’s Royal Shakespeare Company, writes and performs theatre-stage plays, prose, narratives, poetry, and sonnets.

Georgia Author of the Year Award in Poetry.


Georgia-based poet Alice Friman’s The Book of the Rotten Daughter contains “astonishing poems which fearlessly jump into hell and out again, that resent or forgive,” writes poet Marianne Boruch, “poems which wryly, exactly and so richly honor the world of the living.” Her poetry collections include The Book of the Rotten Daughter, Zoo, and Inverted Fire. For her fifth full-length collection of poetry, Vinculum, (LSU Press), she won the 2012 Georgia Author of the Year Award in Poetry.

Professor Emerita at the University of Indianapolis, Friman has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Indiana Arts Commission, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, the MacDowell and Yaddo colonies, and the Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest. A frequent contributor to The Georgia Review, Friman is currently poet-in-residence at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville.

Rope: Science and Other Poems

Deming is author of four poetry books including Rope: Science and Other Poems, winner of the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets; The Monarchs:A Poem Sequence; and Genius Loci. She has published three nonfiction books:Temporary Homelands, The Edges of the Civilized World, and Writing the Sacred Into the Real. She has completed a new nonfiction book titled Zoologies: on Animals and the Human Spirit. With Laurent Savoy, she co-edited The Colors of
Nature: Essays on Culture, Identity, and the Natural World, reissued in 2011 in a new expanded edition. Her work has been widely published and anthologized, including in The Norton Book of Nature Writing, and Best American Science and Nature Writing. Deming is Professor in Creative Writing at the University of Arizona.

Corey, editor of The Georgia Review since 2006

poet-stephen-coreyCorey, editor of The Georgia Review since 2006, has published nine volumes of poetry including The Last Magician and There is No Finished World. A prolific writer, essayist and reviewer, Corey has also published more than 150 poems in the country’s leading periodicals and journals. The New Georgia Encyclopedia describes him as one of the “influential” literary figures in the state of Georgia.

What a blessing this visit was

featured-alum“What a blessing this visit was. I worked on the replenishment of the wellspring from which the writing come. — prayer, long conversations and musings, remembering, making new connections with the past. This place is full of benign energy.” – writer Ann Holmes Redding, author of Out of Darkness, Into Light: Spiritual Guidance in the Quran with Reflections from Jewish and Christian Sources.