When writer/editor Aïda Rogers asked other writers in South Carolina to write about the one place in the state that means the most to them, what she got was … complicated. And what love isn’t? South Carolina’s many conflicting characteristics have marked its many writers, whether their genres are poetry or fiction, journalism or history. Composers of those kinds of writing, and those who specialize in food, sports, children’s literature, the outdoors, and other subjects, weigh in on what Pat Conroy describes as a state that’s more of a “cult” than anything else. Rogers gathered the stories and compiled them into a series of anthologies published by the University of South Carolina Press. In State of the Heart: South Carolina Writers on the Places They Love, a variety of regionally and nationally known writers describe fading farms, small hometowns, obscure eating places, grand and crumbling sports arenas, lakes and rivers, islands and mountains, country roads, and places that no longer exist. These collections are for tourists who want a different kind of vacation—one that offers a deeper look into why South Carolina is the way it is.
South Carolina: Sometimes we like it, sometimes we don’t.
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