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“Give back to your community and your industry. Become a mentor or an intern sponsor … Never forget to credit those who helped you become the artist and the person you are today. Give back and you too will receive.”
Creative consultant Mary Virginia Swanson used these sentences to end a piece called “A Brief List of Self-Assignments for Artists.” While this may seem like easy advice to follow, sometimes it is equally instructive to learn from another’s example. James River Writers nurtures a similar creative spirit by hosting Writers Wednesdays, organizing yearly conferences, and finding myriad opportunities to bring writers together in central Virginia. But an honor like the Emyl Jenkins Award allows an organization like JRW to recognize the individuals and organizations that also strengthen the local writing community.