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Elaine Fowler Palencia

Born: 1946 in Lexington, Kentucky
Pen Name: Laurel Blake

Connection to Illinois: Palencia lives in Champaign.

Biography: Elaine Fowler Palencia of Champaign publishes poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, scholarly monographs, and book reviews. Her work has received many awards, including Illinois Arts Council fellowships. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Vanderbilt University, she is the longtime moderator of the Red Herring Prose Workshop, Champaign-Urbana's oldest continuously operating writers' workshop, and a member of the Glass Room Poets.

  • Small Caucasian Woman Starred Review, Booklist

Primary Literary Genre(s): Fiction; Non-Fiction; Poetry

Primary Audience(s): Adult readers


Selected Titles

Brier Country: Stories from Blue Valley (Volume 1)
ISBN: 0826212794 OCLC: 70764715

University of Missouri Press, Columbia, Mo. : ©2000.

In Brier Country, Elaine Fowler Palencia returns to Blue Valley, the fictional locale in the Appalachian foothills of eastern Kentucky that is the focus of her highly acclaimed Small Caucasian Woman. Blue Valley is a small community—a town where little goes on

Going Places
ISBN: 1942371098 OCLC:

FutureCycle Press 2015

In GOING PLACES, Elaine Fowler Palencia’s third poetry chapbook, she continues to explore the themes of her two collections of Appalachian fiction: identity rooted in place and family, exile and return, childhood, and lost Edens. Grounded in history and the western literary tradition, these poems bring together imagery from fairy tales, the Civil War, bluegrass music, spectral visits, Abraham Lincoln, mountaintop removal, regional speech, and Greek statuary to make surprising connections. The poetry is imbued with the grace, gentle irony, humor, and social concern of her distinctive storyteller's voice.

How to Prepare Escargots: Poems
ISBN: 1599488019 OCLC:

Main Street Rag Press 2020

  Into the Whirlwind 202
ISBN: 0515078182 OCLC: 17722374

Berkley, New York : 1984.

On Rising Ground: The Life and Civil War Letters of John M. Douthit, 52nd Georgia Volunteer Infantry Regiment
ISBN: 0881467669 OCLC:

Mercer University Press 2021

When John M. Douthit of Appalachian Georgia enlisted as a private in Fannin County's 52nd Volunteer Infantry Regiment on March 4, 1862 and marched with neighbors to train at Camp McDonald, he left behind a pregnant wife, an eighteen-month-old daughter, and a small farm. A precious cache of family letters traces him to eastern Tennessee, where he served south of Cumberland Gap; through the failed Confederate invasion of Kentucky; on the march to join Bragg's forces near Murfreesboro, Tennessee; and finally, to the defense of Vicksburg, where John and his fellow North Georgians arrived during the Battle of Chickasaw Bayou. At Vicksburg, where John's younger brother Warren Davis Douthit joined him, five North Georgia regiments solidified into what became known as the Barton-Stovall Brigade. The Brigade manned the water batteries at Warrenton, Mississippi, fought in the Battle of Champion Hill, and afterward was bottled up in the siege of Vicksburg.

Small Caucasian Woman: Stories
ISBN: 0826209432 OCLC: 27264826

University of Missouri Press, Columbia : ©1993.

Short stories from the lives of the residents of Blue Valley, a small town in eastern Kentucky.

Stormy Passage 66
ISBN: 051506677X OCLC: 8693016

Berkley/Jove Pub. Group, New York, NY : 1982.

Stranger in Paradise
ISBN: 0515072427 OCLC: 10633591

Berkley, New York : 1983.

Nicole Starr had managed the Seawinds boutique on Silver Cay ever since the death of her husband. For five years she had devoted herself to her work, unmoved by the romance of the Bahama resort or the attentions of men.Then Grant Sutton, self-styled efficiency expert and notorious womanizer, sweeps in with the force of a tropical storm. His arrogant business tactics endanger Nicole's job, while his persistent charm threatens to awaken her long-sleeping emotions. Though she vows to resist the elemental power of his passion, her heart begins to feel the undertow of overwhelming desire...

Taking the Train: Poems
ISBN: 0962366692 OCLC: 36894914

Grex Press, Middletown, Ky. : 1997.

Palencia's first collection of poignant poems about being the mother of a son with severe intellectual and physical disabilities.

The Dailiness of It
ISBN: 0972211306 OCLC:

Grex Press 2002

This poetry collection about living with a child who has severe mental and physical disabilities "succeeds brilliantly, capturing moments of doubt, weariness, and above all a special kind of love, born of reverence for humanity of her incomprehensible son and the sanctity of their everyday life together."