Lanier Library announces Magnum Opus winner

Published 1:36 pm Monday, June 29, 2020

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In alphabetical order by author, Lanier Library announces the three Magnum Opus finalists chosen in their online People’s Choice voting:

Libbie Johnson: Stories I’ve Saved Til All My Relatives are Dead

First sentence: I was born on the ugliest place on earth in the cracked earth middle of nowhere that smelled of despair.

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Dale Potruski: The Hearth

First sentence: “It was my destiny, it’s what we needed to do, they were telling me, now I’m telling you,” the clock radio blared out from across our bedroom; Lou Gramm nearly made it through the first chorus before I could mute this morning’s rock n’ roll reveille.

Ken Yeager: It’s Only Eight O’Clock

First sentence: Hey honey, the coffee tastes kind of strange this morning.

The winner is Dale Potruski of Landrum, SC.

“The Hearth” is currently large number of computer files each an episode that Dale is working to integrate and structure for theme and flow. It is a story inspired by Dale’s experiences as a B&B owner and proprietor in three historic inns, each with more than one hearth.

“I was inside one of the six hearths in our house in Georgia, wire brushing soot from the back wall of rocks and wondered about where they came from and who had placed them. I learned that they were ballast stones from a slave ship. When slaves had been shipped, stones were added to balance the weight for the crossing. The stones were left behind for the return trip.”

Dale feels that a hearth is the heart of a home, each with a history of people and events.

“I want my book to have an historic and a romantic thread.”

Dale graduated in Journalism, wrote theater and restaurant reviews, worked in broadcast news, interviewed Pearl Bailey, entertained as a musician, and currently volunteers writing and photography for Paws, Prayers, & Promises in Landrum. He adds, “I’ve also promised my wife to work on the book at least four hours a day.”

Submitted by Vincent Verrecchio