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Macon, Georgia

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Macon is smack dab in the middle of Georgia, and though it's close to almost everything in the Southeast, the city still feels like a secret kept between folks in-the-know. The conference is being held at the brand new Marriott City Center Hotel and the Wilson Convention Center, a short walk to the Ocmulgee Heritage Trail and downtown Macon...... .....Beyond Sidney Lanier, Macon's contributions to literature are less well known. But here Tennessee Williams found the inspiration for the character of Big Daddy in "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," and joined Carson McCullers for a visit with her cousin, Jordan Massee, who was hosting Williams. Sherwood Anderson, author of "Winesburg, Ohio," made regular stops in Macon. Pulitzer Prize-winner George Weller moved to Macon after reporting as the first civilian into Nagasaki after the atomic bomb was dropped. His son, Anthony, a novelist, was born here...... .....Maconite Laurence Stallings was an eponymous writer and member of the legendary Algonquin Roundtable, who would write plays for Broadway and movies for John Ford. The larger than life filmmaker Merian C. Cooper, who created "King Kong" and re-enlisted at age 50 to fight in the Second World War with the US Army's Flying Tigers, first enlisted for action in 1916 with the Macon Volunteers and was later immortalized in book (and ironically, later film) in Macon native Robert Scott's war memoir "God Is My Co-Pilot."..... .....Former state poet laureate, David Bottoms, and current state poet laureate Judson Mitcham have called Macon home, as has Miller Williams, who read at President Clinton's second inauguration. Working novelist Tina McElroy Ansa grew up in Macon and based the Mulberry of her work on her experiences here. Journalist-turned-novelist Ad Hudler started writing in Macon. Oprah Book Club author Gwyn Hyman Rubio was born in Macon too.

GET A GREAT DEAL ON A ROOM AT THE MARRIOTT DURING THE CONFERENCE BY CLICKING HERE!

Macon is home to more than 17,000 years of continuous human habitation, from Ice Age hunters to the Muscogee (Creek) Native Americans, the latter who built lodges and mounds still evident at the Ocmulgee National Monument. It is where poet Sidney Lanier grew up, where Antebellum cathedrals like the Hay House and the Cannonball House still stand because General Sherman didn’t burn us down.

The birthplace of The Kazoo, this city has given rise to a host of musicians, from the Georgia Minstrels, Emmett Miller and Blind Willie McTell to Little Richard, Otis Redding and James Brown to the Allman Brothers Band, Lucinda Williams, Jason Aldean and Young Jeezy, as well as world-renowned violinist Robert McDuffie and members of R.E.M., Mike Mills and Bill Berry.

Beyond Lanier, Macon’s contributions to literature are less well known. But here Tennessee Williams found the inspiration for the character of Big Daddy in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” and joined Carson McCullers for a visit with her cousin, Jordan Massee, who was hosting Williams. Sherwood Anderson, author of “Winesburg, Ohio,” made regular stops in Macon. Pulitzer Prize-winner George Weller moved to Macon after reporting as the first civilian into Nagasaki after the atomic bomb was dropped. His son, Anthony, a novelist, was born here.

Maconite Laurence Stallings was an eponymous writer and member of the legendary Algonquin Roundtable, who would write plays for Broadway and movies for John Ford. The larger than life filmmaker Merian C. Cooper, who created “King Kong” and re-enlisted at age 50 to fight in the Second World War with the US Army’s Flying Tigers, first enlisted for action in 1916 with the Macon Volunteers and was later immortalized in book (and ironically, later film) in Macon native Robert Scott’s war memoir “God Is My Co-Pilot.”

Former state poet laureate, David Bottoms, and current state poet laureate Judson Mitcham have called Macon home, as has Miller Williams, who read at President Clinton’s second inauguration. Working novelist Tina McElroy Ansa grew up in Macon and based the Mulberry of her work on her experiences here. Journalist-turned-novelist Ad Hudler started writing in Macon. Oprah Book Club author Gwyn Hyman Rubio was born in Macon too.

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