Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

My writing publishes in The Talking Stick, Volume 29 September 11, 2020

Two stories and a poem I wrote just published in the latest The Talking Stick literary anthology.


AS A WRITER, getting one’s work published always validates personal creativity.

I’m honored to once again have my writing selected for publication in The Talking Stick literary journal, an annual project of the Park Rapids area based Jackpine Writers’ Bloc.

This year my short story, “Josephine Holding Deloris,” earned honorable mention in creative nonfiction. The story connects a 1 ½-inch square vintage family photo to my life experiences.


The beginning of my award-winning story.


Nonfiction judge Jill Johnson, author of several books, including Little Minnesota: 100 Towns Around 100, praises my work. “Thank you for sharing your touching story about your grandmother and aunt. You connected the tiny size of the photo to the small moments of life. You allowed the reader a vivid description of mother and daughter and brought the connection full circle. Keep writing!”

My poem, “Final Harvest,” and second piece of creative nonfiction, “A Quick Guide to Practicing Minnesota Nice,” were also chosen for publication in Insights, The Talking Stick, Volume 29.

This year’s book features 139 poems and stories (selected from 300 submissions) by 92 Minnesota-connected writers. My writing has published many times in The Talking Stick and earned multiple honors.

Copies of the latest book and past volumes are available for purchase at jackpinewriters.com. On the back cover of Insights, the editors note, “In the midst of social distancing, in the midst of mask wearing and Plexiglas shields, we are all grieving the changes in our world. But let’s keep one thing the same—you can still curl up with a good book and read. You can open the pages of Talking Stick 29 and see what your fellow Minnesota writers have written, and some how, perhaps, we can all feel a little bit closer.”

I’d encourage you to order a copy of this collection featuring so many talented writers. That includes Bernadette Hondl Thomasy, a native of Owatonna and a reader of this blog. Her “Mother’s Mojo” also earned honorable mention in creative nonfiction. She co-authored the book, Under Minnesota Skies, with her sister Colleen Hondl Gengler. Minnesota, in my opinion, has produced many gifted writers in all genres. And you’ll find a fine sampling of those creatives in Insights, The Talking Stick, Volume 29.

Copyright 2020 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


18 Responses to “My writing publishes in The Talking Stick, Volume 29”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    Congrats on more published works! That is awesome.

  2. Maureen Gunderson Says:


  3. HAPPY DANCE for you – How Exciting – CONGRATS!!! Happy Day Indeed – Enjoy 🙂

  4. valeriebollinger Says:

    Congratulations! How exciting!

  5. Bernadette Thomasy Says:

    Thank you for the mention of my work in The Talking Stick Volume 29. I agree getting something published certainly validates the effort to keep writing. I am amazed at the dedication of the Jackpine Writers’ Bloc, producing this publication for 29 years. They encourage Minnesota writers to keep telling their stories and there are many wonderful ones, including yours, in this issue. I love your piece, Josephine Holding Deloris. It made me want to pull out some old photos and study them again.
    Also thank you for mentioning the book my sister, Colleen Hondl Gengler, and I coauthored. We appreciate your kind words. Congratulations to you for continuing to produce great work, as recognized by The Talking Stick.

  6. I love my hand-signed copy of the “Talking Stick” that you gifted me a few years ago. It sits on my end table at the cabin. I page through it often. Congrats on more published works. You are a gifted writer for sure.

  7. Susan Ready Says:

    Congratulations for all your work much deserved praise for such a gifted writer.
    Look for my blog Northwoods Arts Council 2020 author virtual tour on September 21 where Talking Stick will be the featured post

  8. Missy’s Crafty Mess Says:

    Congratulations on another publication!

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