Tryon, N. C., June 10, 2016 – With an MBA in hand, young Volly Brunson returns to her hometown of Parkersburg, SC, resolved to rescue her family’s struggling textile firm. Her story is the central focus of Whirlygig: The Dancin’ Man’s Daughter, Mary Ann Claud’s second novel about the dysfunctional Ward clan and their battle with modernity and globalization.
Now available in print and as an ebook, Whirlygig tells of the challenges facing an ambitious and bright woman who refuses to accept the status quo. In her defiance she is forced to contend with a skeptical father, the company president, a distracted mother and a trio of uncles, only one of whom seems sympathetic.
Since May 2014, when she published her first novel about the Ward family, The Dancin’ Man, Claud has made over fifty presentations in the Carolinas to book groups, bookstores, literary festivals, and service clubs. She has also had broadcast interviews in both states, including one with D. G. Martin on WCHL public radio.
Currently a resident of Tryon, N. C., Claud grew up in Lancaster, S. C., where her father was a senior executive in a major textile company. She holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in music from Converse College in Spartanburg, S. C. but began writing professionally in the 1970’s. Beginning in 1976 for a decade she wrote a front page Sunday feature for the Hendersonville (N. C.) Times News. Over the course of her writing career Claud has published everything from art and music reviews to travel pieces and personal profiles. She has also taught adult education courses in creative writing, Southern literature, Henry James and William Faulkner.
Claud enjoys engaging readers in all settings, but prefers presentations that evolve
into question and answer sessions about not only her fictional Ward family, but also
about the creative writing process as a tool for self-