Episode 60: Masterful Stories in the Smokies with Author Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle

50m | Jun 7, 2022

Facebook Live Video from 2022/06/07 - Masterful Stories in the Smokies with Author Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle

In this episode, you'll learn what it takes to become a successful author while you discover the upbringing in the Cherokee culture. 

On this episode of the Gateway to the Smokies Podcast, we have a very special guest, Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle, a renowned author, writer, and educator. She is the author of Even as We Breathe, one of the best books of 2020 by National Public Radio. She is a graduate of Yale University and William and Mary and an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Tribe. Annette resides with her family in Qualla, N.C., and is an avid mountain biker, and a staunch advocate for equal rights, education, and Cherokee history. 

She's joining us to talk about her journey of writing her award-winning debut novel, Even as We Breathe, and her latest book. She will also discuss the Cherokee education system, the importance of language preservation, and how we can influence change in our communities. 

Don't miss this out! 

Tune in for this fun conversation at or watch the Facebook Livestream by clicking here.

Show Notes

Segment 1

Joseph kicks off today's episode mentioning the sponsors, The Meadowlark Motel in Maggie Valley and Joseph announces that this is his first podcast as a resident again in North Carolina! Some upcoming events include June 11 with a pottery seminar with Cory Plott, a master craftsman, who will teach you how to create your own handmade pottery. On June 18th, there will be part 4 of the heritage book series with Bob Plott, free for guests and members. Check out more events at He also introduces his guest, Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle. She is the author of Even as We Breathe, one of the best books of 2020 by National Public Radio. Annette was born and raised in the Smokies and a member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Tribe for her whole life. Her grandfather also has history with the tribe as well; his name was Osley Saunooke. She talks about how fascinating he was. Did you know that Osley was a wrestling world champion?! She also speaks about working in the family business and how her parents influenced her in learning and entrepreneurship.

Segment 2

Annette talks about getting her bachelor's degree from Yale University. She also got her Masters's degree at William and Mary. She talks about why chose to come back to the Smokies. Annette mentions her family and the connections she has in North Carolina and wants to continue to raise her family there. Annette also was a director if the Cherokee Preservation Foundation. She was also a teacher for 12 years. She also talks about her writing. Annette mentions having amazing teachers growing up which influenced her to be creative. She mentions a quote someone from Yale said to her and her mother when they visited the first time. The quote was “the best thing to do with a world-class education is to share it.” Her goals as a teacher are to create empathy and resilience through writing and the process. Some topics she mentions within this are making mistakes and the work that is part of this like the process of editing and writing. She discusses some ways she would teach her students. Annette talks about a manuscript that never officially got published called Going to Water. It's about a fictional story of her grandfather. She never got to know who he actually was as he passed away at an early age. So the character in the story was as close to what she knew of him, full of adventure.

Segment 3

Annette talks about her book Even as We Breathe, which came out in 2020. She says that she had read an article about the role that the Grove Park Inn played in World War II and Ashville’s role as well. This history wasn't familiar to many historians and people like herself who have lived in Ashville for a long time. She gave herself a writing prompt and spent a long time writing on the simplest object that she could think of. In her method of writing, Annette spent time in a very tiny room in the Jackson County Library in Sylva, North Carolina. She talks about the story of what she wrote. She is very inspired by where she loves and the interactions as shown in her novel. It takes place in 1942 and is a coming-of-age kind of story. Until she was working on the marketing packet, she didn't realize that she wrote historical fiction. Other topics include issues of identity, racism, and Cherokee culture. She tells a funny story about teaching her students. She also talks about her decision to retire from teaching.

Segment 4

Annette says that she is working on a new book, a novel that's contemporary with a female protagonist. It's set in Cherokee, which is close to home. She also does nonfiction writing for regional magazines and edits for the Appalachian Future Series through the University Press of Kentucky. She also talks about teaching workshops in different locations. Annette also talks about mountain biking. She says that she likes to be in the middle of the woods, biking fast, and being isolated for a moment from everything. She even lost 65 pounds by mountain biking. Annette and Joseph also discuss favorite trails in North Carolina. For people going to visit Cherokee Reservation, Annette mentions visiting Sassy Sunflower, a sandwich shop. If you want a country buffet, you have to go to Granny’s kitchen and get a pie. You can learn more about Annette at You can also search for her name on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to connect!



00:00:34.560 –> 00:00:46.140 Joseph McElroy: howdy welcome to the gateway to the smokies podcast this podcast is about America’s most visited National Park, the great smoky mountain National Park in the surrounding towns.

00:00:46.530 –> 00:00:55.020 Joseph McElroy: This area is filled with ancient natural beauty a deep storied history and rich mountain cultures that we explore with weekly episodes.

00:00:55.350 –> 00:01:06.870 Joseph McElroy: I am Joseph Franklyn McElroy man of the world, but also with deep roots in these mountains My family has lived in the great smokies for over 200 years my business is in travel, but my heart is in culture.

00:01:07.410 –> 00:01:14.190 Joseph McElroy: Today we’re going to talk about masterful stories of the smokies but first let’s talk about our sponsors.

00:01:15.150 –> 00:01:26.400 Joseph McElroy: Imagine a place evocative of a motor court of the past, a modern environment with a Chic Appalachian feels. A place for adventure and for relaxation.

00:01:26.910 –> 00:01:35.370 Joseph McElroy: Imagine a place where you can fish in a mountain heritage trout stream grill the catch on fire and eat accompanied by fine wine and craft beers.

00:01:35.910 –> 00:01:49.020 Joseph McElroy: Imagine a place of old-time music and world cultural sounds, there is no other place like the Meadowlark Motel in Maggie Valley North Carolina. Your smoky mountain adventures start with where you stay.

00:01:50.310 –> 00:01:58.860 Joseph McElroy: and other sponsors at smokies plural adventure singular dot com smoky mountains and surrounding areas.

00:01:59.250 –> 00:02:09.240 Joseph McElroy: It is a vacation destination for all seasons, some of the nation’s best hiking trails waterfalls outdoor adventures and family entertainment can be found, right here.

00:02:09.870 –> 00:02:21.300 Joseph McElroy: start your adventure by using smokies to explore all the wonderful features of the great smoky mountains National Park, the trails the waterfalls, caves Code, the elk, and more.

00:02:21.750 –> 00:02:34.890 Joseph McElroy: check out all the awesome family attractions and entertainment and lodging you and your entire family can enjoy and also find places to do life events like weddings and honeymoons and romantic weekends.

00:02:35.400 –> 00:02:42.570 Joseph McElroy: The goal of smokies adventures is to become the leading information portal for adventures and experiences and the great smoky mountains.

00:02:43.980 –> 00:02:56.130 Joseph McElroy: got some events coming up, by the way, this is my first podcast now as a resident again of North Carolina my family and I just moved to Asheville North Carolina so work at the gateway the smokies.

00:02:57.660 –> 00:03:03.750 Joseph McElroy: and looking forward to exploring the smokies even further now being both in Buncombe County and Haywood County

00:03:05.430 –> 00:03:12.150 Joseph McElroy: So that’s events coming up is this coming weekend June 11 there’s gonna be a Pottery Seminar with Cory Plott.

00:03:12.720 –> 00:03:18.240 Joseph McElroy: he’s a master potter and he’s the Owner and Operator Plott Ware Pottery of Clyde North Carolina.

00:03:18.840 –> 00:03:29.100 Joseph McElroy: And he brings his mobile studio to our resort to teach participants and to make that to make their own piece of handcrafted pottery you’ll walk away with a piece of pottery.

00:03:29.670 –> 00:03:40.530 Joseph McElroy: He will also be selling some of his award-winning elegant and durable utilitarian decor at the event, this weekend I just saw some wonderful wine to canvas you made that we’re just fabulous.

00:03:41.700 –> 00:03:53.640 Joseph McElroy: But you will get hands-on experience with a master craftsman and then you’ll make your own pottery class limited to 20 participants and it’s 65 for each non-guest and 20 for the.

00:03:54.510 –> 00:04:08.040 Joseph McElroy: 25 for motel guests and heritage club members and then over the afterward will be a free Barbecue dinner and music with Michael Ogletree book your slot now call 82 89261717.

00:04:09.030 –> 00:04:26.730 Joseph McElroy: On June 18 the following weekend there’s going to be a part four of the heritage book series of Bob Plott and it’s free for guests and members and so please join us for yet another informative entertaining and fun afternoon of his history, food, and music.

00:04:28.200 –> 00:04:35.220 Joseph McElroy: With award-winning Author and Meadowlark Smoky Mountain Heritage Center General Manager Bob Plott, discusses his fourth book.

00:04:35.550 –> 00:04:47.790 Joseph McElroy: Colorful Characters of the Great Smoky Mountains  weaves the lively stories of vibrant and intriguing characters such as the Cherokee chiefs Yonaguska,

00:04:48.450 –> 00:05:00.150 Joseph McElroy: Oconostota, Dragging Canoe and their allies such as John Watts, along with their combatants—Robert Rogers, Quintin Kennedy, King Haigler, the Stockbridge Mohicans, Francis Marion, and others,

00:05:00.540 –> 00:05:06.720 Joseph McElroy: as well as modern-day mountain icons such as Von Plott, Charles Miller, and Earl Lanning.

00:05:07.200 –> 00:05:14.640 Joseph McElroy: It will be followed by a book signing and a delicious Barbecue dinner as well, and a company with acoustic music right Mike Ogletree and friends.

00:05:14.970 –> 00:05:23.250 Joseph McElroy: The event is free to motel guests and Heritage Club members—there is an admission charge of ten dollars per person for all that are not staying there.

00:05:25.320 –> 00:05:30.180 Joseph McElroy: And then August 6th is the Launch of the Cherokee Heritage Series with Davy Arch.

00:05:31.170 –> 00:05:36.900 Joseph McElroy: Please join us in spending an intimate and enchanting afternoon with a tree true Appalachian treasure, Davy Arch.

00:05:37.710 –> 00:05:44.910 Joseph McElroy: Davy is a world-class Cherokee tribal is storing and award-winning craftsman of traditional Cherokee crafts.

00:05:45.330 –> 00:05:52.380 Joseph McElroy: specifically masks and baskets and he’s a beloved spokesman for the Eastern band of the Cherokee tribe.

00:05:52.860 –> 00:06:04.410 Joseph McElroy: The event will be followed by the Barbecue dinner and music with Michael Ogletree and Friends. Admission is $20 per person, for all these events call eight to 89261717 to reserve your seat now.

00:06:05.640 –> 00:06:13.740 Joseph McElroy: Today we have a great guest, who knows a lot about Cherokee culture and stories in these mountains her name is Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle

00:06:14.250 –> 00:06:25.140 Joseph McElroy: She is a renowned author writer and educator and is a graduate of Yale University and William and Mary as well as an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Tribe.

00:06:25.830 –> 00:06:37.710 Joseph McElroy: Her award-winning debut novel Even as we breathe, was the first novel published by a member of the eastern band of the Cherokee tribe, and his name or the best books of 2020 by the.

00:06:38.370 –> 00:06:54.300 Joseph McElroy: NPR and that resides with their family in Qualla North Carolina, which is in in the Cherokee reservation and as an avid mountain bikers well as a staunch advocate for equal rights education Cherokee history hello, and how are you doing.

00:06:54.900 –> 00:06:57.540 Annette Clapsaddle: I’m good I’m great to be here with you.

00:06:58.110 –> 00:07:05.610 Joseph McElroy: Well, thank you for it’s quite an honor to have you join us today you have a you have an interesting history and an impressive resume.

00:07:06.000 –> 00:07:15.750 Joseph McElroy: And all of a sudden, you get all sorts of awards for your writing so that’s pretty spectacular, but I wanted to start first with your background, you were born and raised in the smokies, right?

00:07:16.440 –> 00:07:21.660 Annette Clapsaddle: that’s right I lived here all my life, except for undergraduate and graduate school.

00:07:22.140 –> 00:07:27.870 Joseph McElroy: cool and you’ve been a member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee tribe for that your whole life too right.

00:07:28.230 –> 00:07:29.220 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah born in to it.

00:07:30.120 –> 00:07:36.990 Joseph McElroy: Born into it, you have some history that your grandfather Osley Saunooke was chief of the tribe, right?

00:07:37.680 –> 00:07:49.710 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah it seems Osley Burke Saunooke and he was an Eastern Chief in the 50s and into the early 60s.

00:07:51.990 –> 00:07:54.360 Annette Clapsaddle: fan, where he was not a cheap teacher.

00:07:54.810 –> 00:08:08.130 Joseph McElroy: cool well, And he was quite an interesting character in his own right, an esteemed tribal chief, a former Marine, who started a thriving tourist business in 1956 that as I understand it, is still operational today. What was that business?

00:08:09.720 –> 00:08:10.080 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah.

00:08:12.180 –> 00:08:19.590 Annette Clapsaddle: Trading first, and so the land where that is and it’s also contiguous with kind of family land.

00:08:20.670 –> 00:08:21.060 Annette Clapsaddle: That.

00:08:22.170 –> 00:08:33.660 Annette Clapsaddle: That is home to cynics village so there are several shops there that kind of threw out of Chiefs in trading paste including to nicks millen shop that my dad built.

00:08:34.890 –> 00:08:38.850 Joseph McElroy: cool well, it sounds like you to write about a book about him, you got any plans for that.

00:08:41.340 –> 00:08:44.070 Annette Clapsaddle: I think we’re going to talk later about my first novel and.

00:08:48.210 –> 00:08:57.990 Joseph McElroy:  Bob Plott, as I mentioned earlier, our Meadowlark Heritage Center Director says his relatives knew him well and hunted with him often and spoke glowingly of him.

00:08:59.400 –> 00:09:00.810 Joseph McElroy: Did you know him as a child and.

00:09:02.880 –> 00:09:05.370 Joseph McElroy: How did he influence you and your growth.

00:09:06.210 –> 00:09:22.080 Annette Clapsaddle: Unfortunately I didn’t he died fairly young from complications to diabetes, so he passed away in 1965 at the age of 59 I was born in 81 so even my dad was fairly young.

00:09:23.160 –> 00:09:39.930 Annette Clapsaddle: When my grandfather passed away but, honestly, was, in addition to being a to turn chief and a businessman, he was the heavyweight wrestling champion of the world, at one time, so he traveled the wrestling circuit.

00:09:41.370 –> 00:09:43.740 Annette Clapsaddle: So he is incredibly fascinated.

00:09:44.730 –> 00:09:46.590 Joseph McElroy: With the name from okay I.

00:09:47.850 –> 00:09:56.820 Annette Clapsaddle: heard and like I’m sure Bob would say that everybody has a story about him whether it’s true or not, what.

00:09:58.110 –> 00:10:02.940 Joseph McElroy: When they’re a bear museum there that had stuff for him as well, he.

00:10:03.240 –> 00:10:03.900 At one paragraph.

00:10:05.220 –> 00:10:08.970 Annette Clapsaddle: And yes, and that’s it same area yeah.

00:10:09.780 –> 00:10:12.630 Joseph McElroy: He wrestled so he wrestled a bear I mean I’m sure it was for sure.

00:10:17.130 –> 00:10:24.990 Joseph McElroy: You know in this in this in this neighborhood North Asheville where we moved in we get lots of bears I’ve already had two black bears in my backyard.

00:10:26.850 –> 00:10:28.140 Annette Clapsaddle: wrestling and I don’t.

00:10:30.210 –> 00:10:31.830 Joseph McElroy: i’m not planning on it, but.

00:10:33.090 –> 00:10:36.360 Joseph McElroy: I will, I will say loud noises to them.

00:10:39.660 –> 00:10:42.180 Joseph McElroy: So you’re your mother.

00:10:43.590 –> 00:10:47.550 Joseph McElroy: your mother, who is this daughter was a teacher, which you are as well right.

00:10:48.030 –> 00:10:54.390 Annette Clapsaddle: Well, so yes and no so my mother is not his daughter my dad was his son.

00:10:54.510 –> 00:11:00.930 Annette Clapsaddle: Oh, I said Okay, but my mom was a teacher for several years.

00:11:03.120 –> 00:11:14.010 Annette Clapsaddle: And my dad was building his business and getting started and then my mom went to help full time with the family business and snakes village.

00:11:15.030 –> 00:11:24.300 Annette Clapsaddle: But she taught reading, and this was before I was born and didn’t really have click in with me that you know you can.

00:11:24.690 –> 00:11:35.760 Annette Clapsaddle: You can be a teacher not be in a classroom, and so I think that she did in a lot of ways to influence me, even though I didn’t grow up knowing her as a classroom teacher cool.

00:11:37.590 –> 00:11:40.380 Joseph McElroy: So you guys, did you work in the family businesses as well.

00:11:41.010 –> 00:11:41.640 Annette Clapsaddle: Oh yes.

00:11:43.830 –> 00:11:43.980 Annette Clapsaddle: I think.

00:11:44.910 –> 00:11:47.700 Joseph McElroy: wanted to work in this I worked in this Meadowlark motel businesses.

00:11:49.200 –> 00:11:49.830 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah.

00:11:50.250 –> 00:11:53.430 Annette Clapsaddle: As long as we can see over the counter we were hired.

00:11:53.940 –> 00:11:56.280 Joseph McElroy: Right I got paid the.

00:11:56.280 –> 00:11:58.080 Joseph McElroy: diamond room to clean rooms.

00:12:02.220 –> 00:12:04.110 Annette Clapsaddle: got paid a bag of popcorn.

00:12:09.300 –> 00:12:12.150 Joseph McElroy: Did that inspire you with his entrepreneurial activities.

00:12:12.750 –> 00:12:16.110 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah you know I’m always inspired by my dad and.

00:12:16.710 –> 00:12:23.490 Annette Clapsaddle: And yeah, I think, to be an entrepreneur is you know you have to be willing to take risks, so I don’t feel like I’ve been.

00:12:24.120 –> 00:12:33.090 Annette Clapsaddle: there yet, but I can take some of the same risks that he’s taken throughout his life, it really turned out to be worth it, and but there’s a creativity to it.

00:12:34.080 –> 00:12:48.300 Annette Clapsaddle: That I have appreciated and I think I have picked up a little bit at least have that from him and I’m laughing myself because my dad was above me and lives in the House of the Hill and.

00:12:49.740 –> 00:13:05.940 Annette Clapsaddle: And we my son and I were just helping him move a major piece of equipment in a really peculiar precarious way and that kind of and I, you know there’s something that small business owners that want to do it themselves for the cheapest route possible.

00:13:07.530 –> 00:13:21.150 Joseph McElroy: I had that imbued with me, but you know until I got into my 50s I did all my moves myself, you know that includes all the heavy furniture, but I can remember, sometimes having a pickup truck with things so pile though so high.

00:13:22.200 –> 00:13:24.840 Joseph McElroy: I think, and this is a New York City, no less, and things.

00:13:25.470 –> 00:13:30.000 Joseph McElroy: You know, getting ready to fall off, but you know that was just the way you did things right.

00:13:32.160 –> 00:13:41.970 Joseph McElroy: That that was the life of the entrepreneur and the children of the entrepreneur, well, we have to go back and go and take a break, now that seems very quick, but we.

00:13:42.660 –> 00:13:48.750 Joseph McElroy: we’re having a good conversation here, so when we come back we’ll start talking about a little bit more about your background and then get into your books.

00:13:49.590 –> 00:13:50.190 Annette Clapsaddle: sounds great.

00:16:06.270 –> 00:16:23.970 Joseph McElroy: howdy this is Joseph Franklyn McElroy back with the gateway to the smokies podcasts and my guests Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle today is a today’s a craft brewery from Western North Carolina is boozer but it’s the king of the mountain double IPA and I can recommend that highly.

00:16:25.620 –> 00:16:26.190 Annette Clapsaddle: victory.

00:16:27.120 –> 00:16:28.140 Annette Clapsaddle: Right yeah.

00:16:28.500 –> 00:16:39.210 Joseph McElroy: So that you have this great you had this great family and tribal support system and you became an honor student and then off you go to Yale University to get your bachelor’s degree—right?

00:16:40.410 –> 00:16:45.960 Joseph McElroy: Were you one of the first students from the Smokies to get an Ivy League education?

00:16:46.530 –> 00:16:52.290 Annette Clapsaddle: And there were a few before me did had Ivy league education and.

00:16:53.550 –> 00:17:08.310 Annette Clapsaddle: I know that there was a gentleman who had graduated from Dartmouth and there’s a Tribal Member, and then a couple that I think we had gotten graduate degrees, maybe one undergraduate from Harvard I believe.

00:17:09.060 –> 00:17:17.700 Annette Clapsaddle: don’t hold me to it, but I believe that was the first Eastern band undergraduate at Yale, but I’m so happy to say that.

00:17:19.020 –> 00:17:30.060 Annette Clapsaddle: Several has followed and after me, some and that just sent off one of my seniors and this year should be going to Yale in the fall.

00:17:30.570 –> 00:17:45.120 Joseph McElroy: fabulous that’s great no that’s always good you know dispel that hillbilly stereotyping I I got to do a little bit of that myself I got to leave here and go to go to what the school system here in Haywood county got to go to Duke.

00:17:46.260 –> 00:17:47.310 Joseph McElroy: yeah so.

00:17:47.760 –> 00:17:53.190 Joseph McElroy: But you know it can be done in this in this remote wilderness, so to speak.

00:17:55.290 –> 00:17:58.560 Joseph McElroy: And then you went to you got your master’s degree at William and Mary.

00:17:59.100 –> 00:17:59.790 Joseph McElroy: And you.

00:17:59.850 –> 00:18:06.720 Joseph McElroy: and could probably have gotten a great job in any major city in the world, but yet you chose to come back home to the Smokies—why?

00:18:07.350 –> 00:18:25.410 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah you know I did think for a short time about you know public policy in DC or something like that, but and I always tell people that you know so many people work their whole lives, so they can retire to this area, why don’t I just start from the beginning.

00:18:26.610 –> 00:18:33.990 Annette Clapsaddle: there’s no point wasting time it is beautiful and certainly many family connections here.

00:18:35.340 –> 00:18:47.280 Annette Clapsaddle: My husband is also from this area as well he’s from swine county so I just had so many routes here and I didn’t you know I’ve traveled my whole life I don’t feel like I.

00:18:49.020 –> 00:18:51.060 Annette Clapsaddle: was afraid to live anywhere else.

00:18:52.170 –> 00:18:56.550 Annette Clapsaddle: But it’s just such a beautiful place to be I like this face of it.

00:18:58.110 –> 00:19:01.980 Annette Clapsaddle: And you know I want to raise my kids here.

00:19:02.730 –> 00:19:07.050 Joseph McElroy: yeah well you got you did your

00:19:08.040 –> 00:19:17.250 Joseph McElroy: Working and business and things and public policy or the Executive Director of the Cherokee preservation Foundation and the co-editor of the journal.

00:19:17.670 –> 00:19:24.840 Joseph McElroy: Of Cherokee studies, but then you took your master’s and your Ivy league degree and you became a teacher was the teacher for 11 years in high school.

00:19:26.370 –> 00:19:26.760 Joseph McElroy: wasn’t.

00:19:28.140 –> 00:19:30.540 Joseph McElroy: That was an interesting choice what made that choice have.

00:19:31.800 –> 00:19:45.240 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah so well I just completed my 12th year there was a little bit of a break, there were loud, while I was at the foundation, but I’ve known since I was little that I wanted to be a teacher I’m not exactly sure why.

00:19:47.430 –> 00:20:01.230 Annette Clapsaddle: But we had a garden out in front of our house and they’re the really big rocks different places in the garden, and so I made one of the biggest rocks was a teacher’s desk and then they were student desk rocks.

00:20:02.640 –> 00:20:09.300 Annette Clapsaddle: So my brother he’s three years older than me went off to school to you know kindergarten and.

00:20:09.870 –> 00:20:24.570 Annette Clapsaddle: How is playing school in our garden there’s been something about teaching since I was little and that’s interested me but I’ve also been so blessed with incredible incredible teachers throughout my life.

00:20:25.650 –> 00:20:31.770 Annette Clapsaddle: You know, public I was a public school student kindergarten through high school.

00:20:31.980 –> 00:20:33.330 Annette Clapsaddle: Meeting yes.

00:20:34.560 –> 00:20:47.370 Annette Clapsaddle: And just had phenomenal teachers and I wanted to be like the English teachers, I had who always encouraged my creativity and writing.

00:20:47.850 –> 00:20:54.480 Joseph McElroy: I saw a quote where you in a magazine, where you said, the best thing to do with a world-class education is to share it.

00:20:55.050 –> 00:20:55.980 Annette Clapsaddle: Yes, so.

00:20:56.280 –> 00:20:59.640 Annette Clapsaddle: The Director of the teacher prep program at Yale.

00:21:00.810 –> 00:21:04.710 Annette Clapsaddle: is responsible for that quote because I stepped down to the campus.

00:21:05.730 –> 00:21:11.340 Annette Clapsaddle: At Yale new haven Connecticut and my mom is with me revisiting and.

00:21:12.630 –> 00:21:30.090 Annette Clapsaddle: We were introduced to the director of the teacher prep program and my mom who is very practical looked at him and says why would she go to Yale to become a teacher and he said that’s, the best thing you can do with a world-class education.

00:21:31.770 –> 00:21:33.510 Annette Clapsaddle: Today and my mom was, like all right good.

00:21:34.800 –> 00:21:46.830 Joseph McElroy: yo there you go wow so, but now you also started writing, and in fact, in 2012 years sort of had a little success at it when did you first start writing?

00:21:47.760 –> 00:22:05.970 Annette Clapsaddle: I read in my whole life, and you know I as I again I had these great teachers, so I still have these books that we made an elementary school out of you know cardboard and lined paper that we would take together and.

00:22:07.080 –> 00:22:11.040 Annette Clapsaddle: I think my first writing contest was.

00:22:13.230 –> 00:22:15.780 Annette Clapsaddle: It was either late middle school early.

00:22:18.060 –> 00:22:20.490 Annette Clapsaddle: High School i’m actually i’m looking at.

00:22:21.690 –> 00:22:34.860 Annette Clapsaddle: Night so my dad got me this very present I’m looking at a framed check and this is the first time I got paid for it my writing and because it was the first time I want a writing contest it happened big poetry which not my thing.

00:22:35.910 –> 00:22:38.550 Annette Clapsaddle: But the date on the check is 1995.

00:22:39.780 –> 00:22:47.910 Annette Clapsaddle: Freshman year I guess of high school is, I guess, if you know if you’re entering contests you’re getting a little serious about it.

00:22:48.930 –> 00:22:52.050 Joseph McElroy: let’s go see you are, you are actually very serious early on.

00:22:52.530 –> 00:23:00.330 Joseph McElroy: yeah that’s pretty cool and then you continue it, I mean a lot of people have the romance of being a writer, but don’t follow through.

00:23:00.840 –> 00:23:09.300 Joseph McElroy: it’s nice Now I understand you know you’re you know you’ve been writing on the side because you’re a teacher but you’ve been using your experiences.

00:23:09.960 –> 00:23:19.980 Joseph McElroy: Such as manuscripts as submissions finding agent rejects and notice, etc, with your so you’ve been sharing those experiences with your students why Why are you doing that?

00:23:20.370 –> 00:23:24.120 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah well rejections a great teacher and I had plenty of it.

00:23:27.090 –> 00:23:27.810 Annette Clapsaddle: You know, I think.

00:23:29.010 –> 00:23:41.040 Annette Clapsaddle: my goal as a teacher is to one create empathy through literature, but also a sense of resilience in the writing process so.

00:23:42.900 –> 00:23:57.780 Annette Clapsaddle: you know I tried to balance, as she lives her, I was teaching and writing and then I realized how much I was learning as a student of literature, through my own process as a writer, so I.

00:23:59.700 –> 00:24:13.950 Annette Clapsaddle: Would talk to students about what does a query letter look like and what’s important to share, about a story, you know that I’m trying to pitch or whatnot and about the mistakes, I would make.

00:24:15.060 –> 00:24:23.880 Annette Clapsaddle: And, and how to overcome them and they love that you know their teachers, making mistakes like this.

00:24:25.530 –> 00:24:26.610 Annette Clapsaddle: But also.

00:24:29.010 –> 00:24:38.580 Annette Clapsaddle: As you know, there are really like two cohorts of students that went through the process of the novel and it was so exciting to

00:24:39.210 –> 00:24:54.630 Annette Clapsaddle: And yeah I told them I would get an email from an agent, this is early on, and then I query you know I would say okay guys, I have an email in my inbox I haven’t read it, yet here we go and I would read it to you know.

00:24:55.980 –> 00:24:56.940 Annette Clapsaddle: They want to know.

00:24:59.580 –> 00:25:17.370 Annette Clapsaddle: The classic got to witness the publication process that means, and that was a very special time and then they went through the editing process with me and with you know, not everything, but to say Okay, do you see this, this is just one page of edits.

00:25:18.510 –> 00:25:29.520 Annette Clapsaddle: Do it for them to understand it that’s part of it and then, then, of course, this last class and they think they want to go on book tour with me.

00:25:33.180 –> 00:25:37.770 Annette Clapsaddle: Right yeah publicity endemic because that’s what they’ve gotten.

00:25:37.830 –> 00:25:49.320 Annette Clapsaddle: to witness and they’ve been a part of some of my like zoom calls and whatnot and especially with the University of it’s a good experience for them.

00:25:50.160 –> 00:25:59.790 Joseph McElroy: it’s nice to make your life part of the education process, I understand that your kids now have your know ambitions to be world-class or whatever they do right.

00:26:00.300 –> 00:26:05.370 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah then it’s possible that they know somebody it becomes normalized for them and.

00:26:07.200 –> 00:26:11.400 Joseph McElroy: normalizes normalizing education normalizing success, I mean.

00:26:11.820 –> 00:26:18.390 Joseph McElroy: That you know I talked about where people follow the patterns of success right when they see patterns that are successful.

00:26:18.660 –> 00:26:31.560 Joseph McElroy: They will naturally start replicating those right and it’s important for children to see those I think it’s a wonderful thing to show them that process, you know firsthand well I can’t my tip my hat to you that’s great.

00:26:33.540 –> 00:26:40.200 Joseph McElroy: So I mentioned before, I think, in 2012 your first manuscript won an award that was never published, can you tell us what that was and.

00:26:41.220 –> 00:26:43.140 Joseph McElroy: Why I didn’t publish and that sort of thing.

00:26:43.470 –> 00:26:54.960 Annette Clapsaddle: So the title of that was going to water, and it was a finalist for him bellwether for is essentially engaged fiction and then one a couple of other awards but.

00:26:56.160 –> 00:27:07.770 Annette Clapsaddle: It is the fictionalized story of my grandfather asked listening, but I changed names and whatnot to protect the innocent and the reasons.

00:27:08.100 –> 00:27:22.470 Annette Clapsaddle: And you know, besides the fact he did the fascinating character, as I mentioned earlier, I never really felt like I’d know the full truth of who he was until I decided to make up, who I thought he would be.

00:27:24.120 –> 00:27:36.270 Annette Clapsaddle: How he might react to the situation, so I use a lot of the facts from his life and but you know it is still fiction I don’t want to make my aunts and uncles mad at me, sir.

00:27:38.550 –> 00:27:56.400 Annette Clapsaddle: But you know it got close to publication a few times and I just I was trying to find an agent who understood that voice of where I come from that initial man Cherokees very different than other tribes and never really could quite connect with the right agent.

00:27:56.490 –> 00:27:59.100 Annette Clapsaddle: So it’s challenge for now.

00:27:59.850 –> 00:28:19.110 Joseph McElroy: I think I think it’d make a wonderful movie or play or something like that, so now his life was yeah it’s got all those adventure wrestling business chief, and you know that’d be cool alright, so we have to take another break and we’ll get into your book alright.

00:28:19.590 –> 00:28:20.370 Annette Clapsaddle: Alright sounds great.

00:30:26.700 –> 00:30:34.140 Joseph McElroy: howdy this is Joseph Franklyn McElroy back with the Gateway to the smokies podcast my guest Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle.

00:30:35.400 –> 00:30:41.880 Joseph McElroy: So in that you’ve also written from any national publications, such as the Atlanta and literature hub and.

00:30:42.270 –> 00:30:49.020 Joseph McElroy: what’s your real breakthrough was their debut novel even as we breathe, which came out in the middle of covid in 2020.

00:30:49.500 –> 00:31:02.370 Joseph McElroy: And NPR put it on us best bet best books list and then later won the Thomas Wolfe literary award so congratulations that’s great so what inspired you to run right this wonderful now?

00:31:03.210 –> 00:31:15.570 Annette Clapsaddle: So I’m a few things kind of came together again and the most significant was that I had read an article in Nashville SIS and times.

00:31:16.530 –> 00:31:23.970 Annette Clapsaddle: about the role the growth park plays in World War Two, the summer of 19 and actually.

00:31:24.390 –> 00:31:35.820 Annette Clapsaddle: It was that article is really that actual role and during World War Two and there was a small paragraph about the growth parks role and during that time and so.

00:31:36.600 –> 00:31:50.460 Annette Clapsaddle: You know, it said that the growth part held access and diplomats and foreign nationals are prisoners of war, the summer of 1942 and, as you mentioned earlier I’ve lived here my entire life and I had never heard that his.

00:31:50.760 –> 00:31:51.810 Joseph McElroy: motive either yeah.

00:31:52.710 –> 00:31:54.060 Annette Clapsaddle: And a lot of the people.

00:31:55.410 –> 00:31:56.160 Annette Clapsaddle: Who.

00:31:56.400 –> 00:31:56.850 Annette Clapsaddle: You know.

00:31:57.390 –> 00:32:06.120 Annette Clapsaddle: A lot of local the stories that are that’s where my husband is a former history teacher they were also not familiar.

00:32:06.480 –> 00:32:12.150 Annette Clapsaddle: With that history so that’s enough of a mystery, and for me to dig into a little bit more.

00:32:12.720 –> 00:32:22.650 Annette Clapsaddle: And so I’d also given myself a writing prompt and this is after like the first novel I couldn’t get published and I just was going to start something new.

00:32:23.040 –> 00:32:31.380 Annette Clapsaddle: And so I’ve given myself a writing prompt right as long as I possibly could and on the simplest object, I could think of.

00:32:31.800 –> 00:32:48.030 Annette Clapsaddle: me some reason, I chose a bone a clean bone and I worked for a very long time in a very tiny room in the Jackson county library in Sylva North Carolina, and out of that piece and really thinking about.

00:32:49.800 –> 00:33:02.160 Annette Clapsaddle: You know what we leave behind and and and how we are judged on earth and how those things are often counter counter-intuitive right and.

00:33:02.940 –> 00:33:21.030 Annette Clapsaddle: I decided that I wanted to see what would happen if I took a member of a sovereign nation so county sequoia is the protagonist who lives, who leaves Cherokee to go work at the grove park in and forgets the don’t know the growth part is.

00:33:22.230 –> 00:33:33.510 Annette Clapsaddle: A very high-class resort so President stays there girl said, you know, instead of counting guys to work there is a very different.

00:33:33.960 –> 00:33:48.510 Annette Clapsaddle: and social environment but it’s also during wartime so this question of citizenship and belonging in place all becomes really relevant so and it was a really a setting driven novel.

00:33:49.020 –> 00:33:55.950 Annette Clapsaddle: which seems odd to me to write you know and but it made a lot of sense and to really kind of turn up the heat.

00:33:57.120 –> 00:33:57.480 Annette Clapsaddle: Like.

00:33:57.810 –> 00:34:00.420 Joseph McElroy: That doesn’t strike me as odd about you, I mean you.

00:34:00.480 –> 00:34:01.080 Joseph McElroy: You love.

00:34:01.170 –> 00:34:07.650 Joseph McElroy: The settings of the mountains, you came back to live in it, you know I think settings is actually something that is is important to you.

00:34:08.250 –> 00:34:12.810 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah absolutely and daily inspired.

00:34:13.830 –> 00:34:33.030 Annette Clapsaddle: By where I live, and the people of this place and in our interactions with this place, so I you know I just I think prior to that I always thought well novels are you like plot-driven or the character-driven but this setting really kind of exploded into the narrative.

00:34:34.050 –> 00:34:51.180 Joseph McElroy: So it takes place in 1942 and it’s interesting you deal with you know, a love story coming age story now I’ve you know I’ve just started the novel you know I just moved to Asheville but you know we move new near to the growth park in.

00:34:53.190 –> 00:35:03.840 Joseph McElroy: And yeah Bob Bob was telling me about you and I got the book and I’ve started writing, but I had a lot of time to finish it, so I don’t know all of it but Bob it says it’s a masterpiece or a.

00:35:06.840 –> 00:35:16.020 Joseph McElroy: History Western North Carolina and I believe he’s very good at that sort of thing but it’s interesting already that I’m seeing you’re also dealing with issues of citizenship.

00:35:16.380 –> 00:35:30.450 Joseph McElroy: Identity and racism, all the concepts that we’re debating and dealing with today, was that purposeful or came about just from the characters and setting.

00:35:31.440 –> 00:35:42.720 Annette Clapsaddle: In some ways, it was purposeful, and even from the earliest writing exercise thinking about the phone and he reminded me of when I worked in.

00:35:43.800 –> 00:35:54.840 Annette Clapsaddle: Our chief’s office at one time after graduate school as a writer, I was lucky enough to have the office right next door to a political figure.

00:35:56.760 –> 00:35:57.960 Annette Clapsaddle: Because I could hear through the wall.

00:36:01.530 –> 00:36:11.520 Annette Clapsaddle: Remember, one day, and he had open another local politician, the nontribal politician come in and they were discussing this.

00:36:12.240 –> 00:36:25.500 Annette Clapsaddle: Expansion of airport runway that would unearth Cherokee burial sites and I remember, they were obviously at odds about what was about what.

00:36:26.160 –> 00:36:37.560 Annette Clapsaddle: this would happen and the chief explained to him that it is the same as going up to the graveyard and digging up that man’s grandmother.

00:36:37.860 –> 00:36:53.820 Annette Clapsaddle: And I’d never heard it explained so simply, is that right that we are oftentimes people think, and as native American bones as artifacts as opposed to you know the human remains that we consider.

00:36:55.020 –> 00:37:16.500 Annette Clapsaddle: Members, so I think you know early on, I was thinking about the political and racial and Aafia implications of this story, but just that and I didn’t really consider that I was writing historical fiction until I was working on the marketing packet for my publisher.

00:37:19.020 –> 00:37:20.100 Annette Clapsaddle: Oh, this is his story.

00:37:22.950 –> 00:37:35.040 Annette Clapsaddle: But it does feel so relevant to me so many of the issues, unfortunately, are still relevant today and I wanted to use them as a lens to look at those issues that are in the news today.

00:37:36.000 –> 00:37:44.790 Joseph McElroy: wow when you also wrote, both from the male and female perspective, and I think that that takes a little bit of talent, how did you nail that.

00:37:45.630 –> 00:37:53.820 Annette Clapsaddle: Well yeah I often get asked about your writing from a young male perspective, and then I remind people that I taught high school for a dozen years.

00:37:55.800 –> 00:37:59.370 Annette Clapsaddle: diet and have an older brother and I grew up with.

00:37:59.880 –> 00:38:07.710 Annette Clapsaddle: You know male cousins I have two boys that I’m raising you to know I’m really I’ve been inundated.

00:38:08.760 –> 00:38:09.570 Annette Clapsaddle: With a male.

00:38:09.960 –> 00:38:17.190 Annette Clapsaddle: voice in perspective but, and you know also want to be respectful that I’m doing it accurately so.

00:38:18.000 –> 00:38:25.410 Joseph McElroy: I think it’s I think that your interaction with your students, has been a tremendous benefit for you in terms of writing and then I’ve seen some of the.

00:38:26.190 –> 00:38:34.590 Joseph McElroy: Reference things I love the story of your student who’s on a zoom call with some new Yorkers and references prep his preference pronoun is yours.

00:38:37.170 –> 00:38:37.890 Annette Clapsaddle: story.

00:38:39.600 –> 00:38:42.630 Annette Clapsaddle: We were very rural hospital.

00:38:43.980 –> 00:38:53.850 Annette Clapsaddle: Family in the mountains and were paired with Fieldston in New York City, which some of your listeners may be familiar with a private school.

00:38:55.560 –> 00:39:11.490 Annette Clapsaddle: And you know the New York kids were like automated that they gave their pronouns and in our students, this was a few years ago to were taken aback when that question came up on this thing called.

00:39:14.130 –> 00:39:16.620 Annette Clapsaddle: This kid he just said, my pronouns y’all.

00:39:19.980 –> 00:39:20.670 Joseph McElroy: hey good.

00:39:22.530 –> 00:39:22.980 Joseph McElroy: Good.

00:39:27.270 –> 00:39:29.520 Joseph McElroy: Well that’s great, so I think that’s.

00:39:31.140 –> 00:39:35.460 Joseph McElroy: I think that says a lot about she was a great writer and as a teacher that your students are.

00:39:37.590 –> 00:39:54.480 Joseph McElroy: letters are you know that are really involved and really able to you’ve really educated them to deal with the society, and you know and they’ve been helped you bring that into your writing so congratulations I think that’s that is the definition of success, I think.

00:39:56.010 –> 00:40:10.200 Joseph McElroy: So life is going great for you and you’ve been a great teacher for over a decade living your dream in the smokies with your husband who’s also a teacher and your sons and your debut is a huge success.

00:40:11.940 –> 00:40:17.010 Joseph McElroy: This year you’ve sort of turned things upside down, did you decide to retire from teaching.

00:40:18.810 –> 00:40:20.730 Joseph McElroy: Writing and family and other projects.

00:40:21.150 –> 00:40:24.030 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah my husband says, I can’t use the word retire.

00:40:25.530 –> 00:40:26.070 Joseph McElroy: Okay.

00:40:26.370 –> 00:40:28.920 Annette Clapsaddle: not officially retired and no.

00:40:31.110 –> 00:40:45.090 Annette Clapsaddle: It was a tough decision, I really do love teaching I love my students, and but I, you know the book came out in 2020 and since then it’s been a full sprint just with and.

00:40:45.900 –> 00:40:56.310 Annette Clapsaddle: publicity for the book and then it’s led to other opportunity writing opportunities public speaking teaching workshops and you know I don’t want.

00:40:56.820 –> 00:41:10.260 Annette Clapsaddle: You know I guess it came down to a decision, and then I would have to choose one or the other, I cannot keep up the pace of full-time teaching and pursuing writing you know you get the next novel out.

00:41:11.730 –> 00:41:24.030 Annette Clapsaddle: as well, and you know if you are in education or you know anyone in education, you know that the last few years have been incredibly difficult and there.

00:41:24.540 –> 00:41:34.770 Annette Clapsaddle: For me, there was not an end in sight to that to that difficulty of being a public school teacher it’s just kind of getting harder and harder.

00:41:35.310 –> 00:41:47.340 Annette Clapsaddle: And and and you know I don’t like to be pessimistic about it because I want to encourage people and but I can’t do it in it yeah just couldn’t do it anymore if I wanted to continue writing.

00:41:48.510 –> 00:41:55.500 Annette Clapsaddle: You know, it is about time but it’s also just about like brain space and energy and excuse me to put.

00:41:56.880 –> 00:42:00.810 Joseph McElroy: it’s a real shame that you have to be at the forefront of cultural wars.

00:42:01.440 –> 00:42:05.550 Joseph McElroy: Right in school that’s just not fair to the public, teachers, yes.

00:42:07.680 –> 00:42:14.100 Joseph McElroy: yeah yeah and it’s really a misplaced fear that somehow you’re you know you’re destroying our children is.

00:42:14.100 –> 00:42:15.570 Annette Clapsaddle: ridiculous yeah.

00:42:19.020 –> 00:42:19.800 Annette Clapsaddle: I couldn’t do it.

00:42:21.450 –> 00:42:27.330 Joseph McElroy: I mean the bane of my existence and people can throw darts at me and want it, but I hate homeschooling.

00:42:27.840 –> 00:42:41.940 Joseph McElroy: I met too many people that are like not even high school graduates are homeschooling their kids I’m saying homeschooling to be what you know it’s like yeah yeah you’re going to do more damage than me, you know train teacher with that sorry I’m.

00:42:42.270 –> 00:42:43.200 Annette Clapsaddle: i’m being a little political.

00:42:43.440 –> 00:42:45.180 Joseph McElroy: don’t generally do about this issue.

00:42:45.570 –> 00:43:02.940 Joseph McElroy: yeah since I got three and a half-year-old twins that got to go through you know life your schooling I’m I am yeah I understand where you’re coming from and I appreciate the work that you did, and I can also understand you know, taking the opportunity to retire from that.

00:43:07.470 –> 00:43:12.570 Joseph McElroy: So we’re gonna take a break now and come back and find out what you’re doing next and talk a little bit about mountain bike.

00:45:15.780 –> 00:45:29.940 Joseph McElroy: howdy this is Joseph Franklyn McElroy back with the gateway to the smokies these podcasts and my guest Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle, so Annette, what’s next for you as a writer you’re working on a new book right Is it based on.

00:45:30.960 –> 00:45:37.170 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah absolutely and I’ve been working on one for a little while now, but again I had to put it aside.

00:45:38.100 –> 00:45:53.160 Annette Clapsaddle: For the full-time job but um yeah this next novel is contemporary was a female protagonist set in Cherokee so it’s pretty close to home, I got to make sure I stay far enough back from it.

00:45:54.570 –> 00:45:55.050 Annette Clapsaddle: But.

00:45:57.030 –> 00:46:00.150 Annette Clapsaddle: I am fairly early in the process, but it’s.

00:46:01.470 –> 00:46:20.700 Annette Clapsaddle: kind of being it’s inspired by some of our traditional stories it’s not a retelling of those stories, but I have mine those for the values that they instill in our culture and I’m kind of overlaying it on a contemporary and political landscape and cheer up that way.

00:46:22.320 –> 00:46:23.730 Annette Clapsaddle: So that’s what I’m working on.

00:46:24.480 –> 00:46:26.400 Joseph McElroy: Your First Non historical fiction.

00:46:28.500 –> 00:46:29.460 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah exactly.

00:46:31.980 –> 00:46:34.080 Annette Clapsaddle: The time he ruined may be historical.

00:46:37.230 –> 00:46:40.590 Joseph McElroy: These will suck to the years of the crisis.

00:46:42.900 –> 00:46:45.960 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah because in here and now back to rethink.

00:46:47.010 –> 00:46:49.470 Annette Clapsaddle: Whether you know how could this plays into this.

00:46:50.070 –> 00:46:51.990 Joseph McElroy: Is covid character yeah.

00:46:52.260 –> 00:46:54.510 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah so I have to do a lot of.

00:46:55.920 –> 00:47:02.700 Annette Clapsaddle: nonfiction writing for regional magazines and things like that and I’m a.

00:47:03.810 –> 00:47:18.840 Annette Clapsaddle: An editor for the Appalachian future series and through the university press of Kentucky so stay pretty busy with different writing projects, but the main one that forces me that focus on the new novel.

00:47:20.190 –> 00:47:24.630 Joseph McElroy: that’s great and are you doing, are you doing how are things like workshops and.

00:47:25.110 –> 00:47:26.100 Annette Clapsaddle: Yes, yes.

00:47:26.430 –> 00:47:33.390 Annette Clapsaddle: cool yeah I think it’s nice to be able to continue to teach and even though I’ll be out of.

00:47:34.770 –> 00:47:44.850 Annette Clapsaddle: A public high school right so teaching workshops actually leave Friday and for.

00:47:46.050 –> 00:47:47.370 Annette Clapsaddle: LMU for.

00:47:48.720 –> 00:48:01.590 Annette Clapsaddle: For the festival there I’ll be teaching workshops and then I’ll be teaching a full week at John C Campbell folks school in Brasstown and North Carolina starting Sunday so.

00:48:01.980 –> 00:48:09.570 Joseph McElroy: That Bob’s been trying to put together a literary conference here, I hope you participate in that that’d be you’d be a wonderful part of it yeah.

00:48:11.010 –> 00:48:17.010 Joseph McElroy: That should be good so so I want to talk about you are my mountain biking.

00:48:19.050 –> 00:48:23.040 Joseph McElroy: enthusiastic yeah, what do you like most about that sport.

00:48:24.420 –> 00:48:34.800 Annette Clapsaddle: um well I like being in the middle of the woods and feeling very isolated from everything but also going super fast.

00:48:39.720 –> 00:48:53.610 Annette Clapsaddle: superfast downhill and it’s I think it’s because it is contradictory to how I normally am you know planner and I’m fairly cautious and.

00:48:55.050 –> 00:48:58.410 Annette Clapsaddle: This is this forces me out of that comfort zone.

00:48:59.790 –> 00:49:03.780 Annette Clapsaddle: And I mean I could talk for days about all the things I love about it, I just started.

00:49:04.740 –> 00:49:21.510 Annette Clapsaddle: writing about five years ago and, and you know, first and foremost, for even for my health I’m a former athlete I used to play basketball, but my knees can’t take that anymore I lost about 60 pounds when I started mountain biking.

00:49:24.990 –> 00:49:25.530 Joseph McElroy: I have a.

00:49:25.560 –> 00:49:29.700 Joseph McElroy: three-and-a-half-year-old son named Henry that’s challenging you to a race right now.

00:49:30.210 –> 00:49:32.070 Annette Clapsaddle: oh three.

00:49:33.510 –> 00:49:37.800 Annette Clapsaddle: My student this semester, it was on my bike and he was running.

00:49:39.660 –> 00:49:41.850 Annette Clapsaddle: He thought he could beat me that didn’t happen.

00:49:46.770 –> 00:49:48.360 Joseph McElroy: He loves to go fast.

00:49:49.980 –> 00:49:52.950 Joseph McElroy: So, what are your favorite local or regional trails.

00:49:53.520 –> 00:50:01.260 Annette Clapsaddle: And what I consider my home trail is fire mountain trail system and Cherokee and it’s really kind of.

00:50:01.950 –> 00:50:20.820 Annette Clapsaddle: When that trail system, open and I started learning more about mountain biking in general, so it’s just a few minutes from my house I get there, myself and I are Sali and near Bryson city and the Fontana area I do a lot of writing out there.

00:50:23.460 –> 00:50:37.320 Annette Clapsaddle: And oh gosh there’s Dupont and regard, and you know we’re really lucky to have so many trails around here and yeah and you know my favorite ones, or maybe not the ones that are more.

00:50:39.750 –> 00:50:46.200 Joseph McElroy: that’s why, but if you try out some of the new ones up like the new pipe parking chest up the mountain and they would challenge you just.

00:50:46.230 –> 00:50:53.040 Annette Clapsaddle: Barely I mean so all of these there yeah there are lots of new places it seems like in the last year and a half.

00:50:53.430 –> 00:50:59.040 Annette Clapsaddle: And so, all these places are kind of on my list I’m excited to have a little more flexibility in my schedule.

00:50:59.340 –> 00:51:13.590 Annette Clapsaddle: And he had to make some of those day trips and hopefully out with some of my riding buddies may be to go check them out there’s a and a group of predominantly ladies that I ride with we like to check out new trails.

00:51:14.580 –> 00:51:16.890 Joseph McElroy: cool do you have your son’s right as well?

00:51:17.550 –> 00:51:19.350 Annette Clapsaddle: They do, and they.

00:51:20.550 –> 00:51:28.110 Annette Clapsaddle: know the ride, and you know for a while, then they’ll get interested in something else, but they both had bikes so.

00:51:29.130 –> 00:51:34.890 Annette Clapsaddle: They don’t always go on trails with me and that they’re all over our property.

00:51:36.630 –> 00:51:39.720 Annette Clapsaddle: at nine and 13 Charlie and Ross

00:51:40.170 –> 00:51:42.210 Joseph McElroy: All right, almost teenage.

00:51:46.050 –> 00:52:03.120 Joseph McElroy: There you go so what’s good, and you, is there any is there, you know, one of the things I’d like to ask is a recommendation for a place to eat for people listening to the show for coming to your part of the country out in the cloud qualified and boundary the Cherokee reservation.

00:52:03.870 –> 00:52:05.670 Annette Clapsaddle: All right, and.

00:52:07.110 –> 00:52:08.730 Annette Clapsaddle: I feel like I’m sitting on the spot here.

00:52:08.940 –> 00:52:10.050 I know I know.

00:52:12.690 –> 00:52:17.190 Annette Clapsaddle: I don’t know what this one just popped into my head and we’re not talking like gourmet food, but.

00:52:18.870 –> 00:52:19.170 Joseph McElroy: I think.

00:52:19.230 –> 00:52:33.390 Annette Clapsaddle: The people that joy that’s all yes that’s a sunflower is like a sandwich shop not like a sandwich shop, it is isn’t it shop and near the entrance to the great smoky mountain National Park in the snake village area sassy sunflowers a very.

00:52:34.950 –> 00:52:40.680 Annette Clapsaddle: Great sandwich place and then I have to say, if you want, like the quintessential.

00:52:42.450 –> 00:52:52.470 Annette Clapsaddle: Country Buffet, that has been around since the beginning of time, you have to go to grandma’s kitchen and get pie for dessert you got to get high.

00:52:52.980 –> 00:52:54.960 Joseph McElroy: Five you got to get a pie yeah.

00:52:56.400 –> 00:53:04.680 Joseph McElroy: cool fabulous well this now, we gotta shout outs, you want to mention how people get in contact with you find out more about your book that sort of stuff.

00:53:05.190 –> 00:53:12.060 Annette Clapsaddle: So I have a website it’s a new and luckily I have one of.

00:53:13.200 –> 00:53:25.260 Annette Clapsaddle: The most unusual names, so you can pretty easily find me on Google search but I’ll be updating that website and the coming weeks, speaking of students.

00:53:25.560 –> 00:53:31.950 Annette Clapsaddle: And that’s that website was developed by a former student of mine, so I gotta get to updating it with.

00:53:32.730 –> 00:53:50.760 Annette Clapsaddle: Events going on I’ll be busy all summer with festivals and workshops and things like that and also I’m on Facebook and on Instagram and I just use my name I don’t do anything special so Twitter also so just it’s Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle easy to find.

00:53:51.390 –> 00:54:04.440 Joseph McElroy: cool well Thank you so much for being on the show today it’s been a wonderful conversation I’m gonna look forward to finishing your book, especially sits in it’s in the North Asheville area where I just moved to find out a little bit about the history of that area.

00:54:05.700 –> 00:54:12.720 Joseph McElroy: yeah glad to be too, and hopefully we will continue having conversations, and now have you have your Conference at the Meadowlark

00:54:13.530 –> 00:54:14.040 yeah.

00:54:15.360 –> 00:54:17.610 Annette Clapsaddle: Maybe like doing you love to do that cool.

00:54:18.090 –> 00:54:33.180 Joseph McElroy: So this podcast is the gateway to the smokies it’s live-streamed on as well as on talkradio.NYC, which is a network of live podcasts.

00:54:34.800 –> 00:54:43.590 Joseph McElroy: And I recommend you take a chance to look at that network there are a lot of great podcasts to listen to live, which I find to be a very dynamic format.

00:54:44.430 –> 00:55:00.900 Joseph McElroy: And I think interesting if you want to be involved in conversations that seem real and they range from small business self-help to pet care to any number of things and it’s I think it’s a wonderful network to become aware of and join in.

00:55:02.130 –> 00:55:08.160 Joseph McElroy: I also have another podcast and it’s never called wise content creates wealth, I have a marketing company that specializes in.

00:55:08.820 –> 00:55:28.110 Joseph McElroy: content and memorable tourism experiences for travel and I talked about that quite a bit on wise content create wealth so and that’s on Fridays from noon until one, and this podcast gateway to the smokies every week Tuesdays from six to seven on this network.

00:55:29.130 –> 00:55:39.690 Joseph McElroy: And I hope you will join me again next week for another great guest, and another great conversation, thank you very much it’s been nice having you here.

00:55:40.680 –> 00:55:44.460 Annette Clapsaddle: yeah, thank you for having me really enjoy it you’re welcome.

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Gateway to the Smokies