Over the course of her career, Mary Ann Claud has published everything from travel pieces and personal profiles, to real estate ads. She’s taught adult education courses in creative writing, Southern literature, Henry James, and William Faulkner. She joined writers’ groups in Tryon and Asheville. It was in one of these groups that the main characters of The Dancin’ Man first emerged. In light of pressing family responsibilities, Claud set the project aside, packed the manuscript into a canvas boat bag, and stored it in a closet. The novel remained there for over twenty years.
In 2009, Claud, recently widowed, was re-
At the suggestion of her husband, Claud read Textile Town, edited by Hub City Executive Director, Betsy Teeter. Textile Town chronicles the rise and decline of the textile industry in Spartanburg County, South Carolina, a story echoed throughout the South. Immediately, Claud realized the drama of that real life story provided the missing backdrop and unifying element for the personal journey of Ted Brunson, her dancin’ man.
For the next year and a half, Mary Ann Claud traveled the textile region of North
and South Carolina, attending literary festivals, library-