The Student Art and Literary Journal of Fairmont State University debuted its 38th annual issue at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, May 7, at the West Virginia Folklife Center. Award winners in the categories of poetry and fiction read from their works, while graphic art submissions were displayed on the screen.
“Whetstone provides a wonderful opportunity for students to see their work published, and for the editing staff to hone their skills by reviewing the work of other students from various departments all over campus, Dr. Nathan Myers, assistant professor of English and faculty sponsor, said.
Taylor Crawford, first place award winner for poetry for “Imperial Entrance,” and a graduating senior English major from Buckhannon.
“Seeing my work in print gives me the confidence I need to continue cultivating my writing,” she said.
Dakota Spielvogel, a junior English major from Wheeling, read his first-place award-winning story, “Lonely Duet.”
Madison Mayle, a junior Art major from Philippi, took the first-place award honors for art with her pieces “Ocean View,” and “Ungrounded.”
Overall, 31 students had their literary and artistic work published in Whetstone 38. Renea Spriggs, psychology major from Martinsburg, whose poems “Dear M,” and “Raul,” were included, reflected on the experience of being published.
“When it comes to my writing I’ve always been a little afraid to share with anyone. However, this opportunity gave me courage to submit something just to see what would happen,” she said.
“When I heard that my submissions made it in Whetstone I was ecstatic. Holding the copy of it in my hand and seeing the look on my parents’ faces of how proud they were was amazing to me.”
Works to be included are chosen by student editors at weekly meetings every Tuesday. Editor Bailey McInturff, junior English major from Beckley enjoys the editorial process.
“I’m so glad I get to collaborate with such a large group of people who really care about art and literature and want to give people a chance to get published,” McInturff said. “It’s one thing for our friends, families, and professors to tell us they like our work, but when your work gets chosen anonymously from a panel of your peers, that makes you feel like what you produced is really worth something. Whetstone is a vital part of this institution that gives students a place to express themselves, and I don’t know what I would do without it.”