Friday, July 19, 2019



The Writers’ Workshop Annual Literary Fiction Contest   

Deadline: Postmarked or emailed by Sept. 30, 2019


1ST Place:  Your choice of a 2 night stay at our Mountain Muse B&B in Asheville; or 3 free workshops (in person or online); or 50 pages line-edited and revised by our editorial staff
2nd Place: Two free workshops; or 35 pages line-edited
3rd Place:  One free workshop, or 25 pages line-edited
10 Honorable Mentions


Submit a short story or chapter of a novel of 5,000 words or less. 
Pages should be paper clipped, with your name, address, phone and title of work on the first page. Double-space, and use 12 point font.
The entry fee is $25 per story. Multiple entries are accepted.   Enclose self-sealing SASE for critique and list of winners. Make check or money order payable to The Writers’ Workshop, and mail to: Fiction Contest, 387 Beaucatcher Road, Asheville, NC  28805.
Emailed submissions may be sent in Word doc attachment to, with “Fiction Contest” in the subject. The entry fee is payable online at                    


Thursday, July 18, 2019

2019 US Air Guitar Finals -- Nashville TN

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It's game time, people!

The 2019 US Air Guitar Championships culminate in Nashville for the first time ever. The best air guitarists from cities across the nation will face off against defending national champs Georgia Lunch (2018) and Mom Jeans (2017)—and 4x national champ and 2x world champ Airistotle.

Nothing has ever mattered more. And you can see it live at Nashville's Exit/In if you get tickets soon:

One will be crowned the 2019 US National Champion, and will move on to Oulu, Finland to represent Team USA in the Air Guitar World Championships.

Copyright © 2019 US Air Guitar, All rights reserved.

Elysabeth Alfano >> The Plant-based Potential: Empowered Purchasing


The Plant-based Potential: Empowered Purchasing
Plant-based Food, News and Lifestyle Expert, Elysabeth Alfano on empowered purchasing: "Align your purchasing power and the power of the dollars in your wallet with your values. Then you will see real change in the world."
CHICAGO/LOS ANGELES – From her extensive interviews and combing of statistics, Plant—based Food, News and Lifestyle Expert, Elysabeth Alfano, discusses the breaking headlines in the plant-based space over the last few weeks. 
  1. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has asked activist Tal Gilboa to be his adviser on all matters of animal rights.  In a written statement to  Plantbased News, Netanyahu said, "[Animal rights] is a subject which has gradually become more and more dear to my heart. I have been influenced by my family, by books which I have read, by Tal herself and I must add, by my dog Kaya.  My connection with Kaya, seeing how she understands things, witnessing her feelings and her emotions have all had a profound effect on me." 
  2. The U.K.'s KFC vegan burger, the Imposter Burger, sold out in 4 days. With sales over 500% of expectations and supplies intended for the entire month gone in 4 days, even KFC is stunned.
  3. "Change comes from the bottom up. It never comes from the top down. If routine, horrific treatment of animals in factory farms by the meat and dairy industry doesn't sit well with you, don't give them your dollars. Align your purchasing power and the power of the dollars in your wallet with your values. Then you will see real change in the world," Elysabeth Alfano, plant-based news expert and host of the Awesome Vegans Podcast and Video Series. 
  4. According to Business Insider, Del Taco announced that the Beyond Meat Taco is on track to be one of its most successful product launches ever. The chain has sold over 2 million tacos since April and is now launching two Beyond Meat Burritos. 
  5. In the midst of what Animal Recovery Mission calls the largest dairy abuse case in history at Fair Oaks Farms, on July 27th, Mothers Against Dairy and Free From Harm are organizing a Chicago rally in the location of the Cows on Parade exhibit on Michigan Avenue. At the rally, Mothers from the Midwest will be speaking out against the systematic cruelty fundamental to all dairy farming. As Free From Harm founder, Robert Grillo explains, “Dairy is despair, heartache, separation anxiety, and grief for mothers cows and their newborns who are ripped from them at birth so that we can take their milk. It is the exploitation of the sacred bond of motherhood.” Nationwide protests continue against Fair Oaks Farms which distributes to Fairlife (co-owned by Coca-Cola). Portland, Denver, Los Angeles, NYC, Atlanta and Chicago have hosted over 12 protests. 
  6. According to Vegconomist, in a recent report from, the global plant-based meat market is estimated to be valued at $12.1B in 2019 and is likely to reach $27.9B by 2025, with a compound annual growth rate of 15% during this period. Meanwhile, according to the Vegconomist and the South China Morning Post, Veganism is expected to rise 17% from 2015-2020 in China, meaning 200 million people would be plant-based. Vegan pork products, Omnipork and Omnimince, Just Eggs, Beyond Meat and Oatly Ice Cream, among other plant-based products, are currently selling in China. 
  7. In a raw Washington Post Op Ed piece, legendary owner of The Farm Sanctuary, Gene Baur, offered a solution to dairy farmers looking to exit the industry that has been on the decline for over a decade. He helps them envision a better and more robust farming life without animals. With Elysabeth Alfano in an Awesome Vegans Podcast and Video Series interview, Gene underscored: "We aren't anti-business. We aren't anti-farming. We are anti-cruelty."
  8. In keeping with Millennials' desire to align their work and purchases with their values, the UK now has two vegan hiring companies. Vegan Temps brings together vegan candidates seeking temporary work with vegan companies seeking to fill temp vacancies. Citizenkind, also in the UK, is the first ever eco-conscious recruiting company, expanding on the concept that Millennials want to work with and spend their time and money on eco and socially-conscious businesses. 
  9. In a candid interview with Elysabeth Alfano, newscaster, radio host and the voice of American Idol, Mark Thompson, shared what he wished he knew 10 years ago."I didn’t know that dairy was associated with the calf being taken away from the mother.  To me it is one of the great secrets that’s been kept, along with the marketing associated with dairy that happy cows give milk.  When you talk to people and they say, ‘How come dairy is so bad?’ They don’t know. They say, ‘Don’t dairy cows just give the milk?’  It is a profound sadness. It is one of the most profoundly cruel and depressing facts about this dairy world and I wish I knew it ten years ago so I could have stopped drinking milk, switched to tasty nut or soy milks and gotten the word out."
  10. London remains a hot-bed of vegan activity and is at the epi-center of a plant-based lifestyle.  According to learnings from Global Meat News' Plant-based Protein Conference (yes, Global Meat News put on a Plant-based Protein conference), 1 in every 4 meals in London is plant-based. 
  11. Bonus! Fun news from GrubHub: Veganism is the top trend with vegan orders up by 25%. The Impossible Burger is the most popular late night item of all items, plant-based or not.

Elysabeth is available for interviews to discuss the changing zeitgeist of consumer habits, growing business trends and important plant-based voices and leaders that are forming the future of food.

Short bio: After completing an MBA and spending many years with Fortune 500 companies, Elysabeth turned to journalism. With 8 years in radio, TV, podcasting and print journalism, and winning awards for same, Elysabeth Alfano launched the Awesome Vegans Podcast and Video Series on WGN Radio in which she interviews some of the most important plant-based influencers of our time. She is also a plant-based news, food and lifestyle expert and consults to businesses and restaurants looking to enter the plant-based market to grow market share, profits and goodwill PR. 

In addition to guest hosting for WGN Radio, Elysabeth does plant-based reporting for the #JaneUnChained News Network while also spicing things up on The Silver-Chic Chef on-line cooking series. She has done plant-based cooking demonstrations on WCIU-TV and WGN-TV and is a public speaker on the physical, mental, business, political and environmental benefits of a plant-based lifestyle. She speaks at food festivals and summits and is a guest plant-based expert on radio stations around the nation including iHeart Radio's The Fork Report, WCPT and WGN Radio.  Occasionally, Elysabeth writes for VegNews and contributes to NPR's KCRW (Los Angeles) as a plant-based reporter.

Awesome Vegans Podcast and Video Series: Plant-based News, Food and Lifestyle Expert and Podcast Host Elysabeth Alfano interviews the nation’s most important plant-based influencers (doctors, entrepreneurs,  politicians, athletes, celebs, chefs, economists, environmentalists) who are forming the future, making the world better for people, the environment and animals.  Past guests: CEO of Beyond Meat, Ethan Brown, Dr. Greger, CEO of Lightlife and Field Roast, Dan Curtin, Bear's Pat O'Donnell, Billy Corgan, NBA Legend John Salley, Dr. Neal Barnard, Good Food Institute’s Brad Barbera, IL senator Linda Holmes and many more.

For the full bio, click here. ##
Copyright © 2019 Elyse C. Bec, inc., All rights reserved.
You are added to this list as a member of the press.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Reminder tonight! Announcing: Hilton | Asmus representation of British Photographer David Gamble - Cocktail Reception: Wednesday, July 17, 5:00 to 7:30 (Chicago,IL.)


 Welcome     Artists       Exhibitions      Press     
 Hilton |Asmus Contemporary
is proud to welcome 


You are cordially invited to a cocktail reception to meet the artist 

Wednesday, July 17 
5:00 to 7:30 pm

Hilton Asmus Contemporary
716 North Wells  *  Chicago

Since the mid-1970s, David Gamble's passion for photography has led the London-born artist across the globe, where he has worked for The New Yorker, Elle and Time-Life publications, winning prestigious awards for his work - including the 1987 Grand Prix European Award naming him the best photographer in Europe, the 1989 World Press Award and the 1989 American Photography Award.

Based in New Orleans, David Gamble is a multidisciplinary artist whose body of work consists of paintings, works on paper, and photographs, all of which have been exhibited globally. Over his decades-long career spanning the commercial, journalistic, and fine art realms, Gamble has photographed such illustrious figures as Stephen Hawking, Neil deGrasse Tyson and the Dalai Lama with several of his portraits included in the permanent collections of the National Portrait Gallery in London and the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC. 

In 1988, Sotheby's New York hosted one of the most talked-about auctions of the decade, the sale of the Estate of Andy Warhol. In addition to paintings and sculpture, some of the most sought-after items were Warhol's personal effects, including decor, clothing, and even his 1974 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow. The goal of the sale was to raise funds for the then fledgling Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. 
Soon after Warhol's death, David Gamble was permitted access to Warhol's East 66th street House, Factory and Warehouse. There, he captured the placement of Warhol's belongings as the artist had lived with them over the years. Rather than simply documenting the space, Gamble's still-lifes capture the humanity and fierce individuality of the artist.

Andy Warhol's Living Room, NYC 1987 ©David Gamble

Andy Warhol's Parlor, NYC 1987 ©David Gamble

Andy Warhol's Kitchen, NYC 1987 ©David Gamble

To read more about David Gamble and to see more of his work click here
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HILTON | ASMUS CONTEMPORARY, 716 N. Wells Street, Chicago, IL 60654

Monday, July 15, 2019

The High Cost of Tick-Borne Disease Misdiagnosis

The High Cost of Tick-Borne Disease Misdiagnosis

  Nearly 36 percent of patients with a tick-borne disease spent more than $10,000 on tests, treatments, appointments, and other costs associated with their disease, a new IGeneX survey found.

The survey analyzed the cases of 198 patients from 2018 and 2019 who were tested by IGeneX, a leading testing lab in California. Researchers sought to determine how long it took for patients to obtain a proper diagnosis, how many doctors they had visited, and how much financial impact they had ultimately incurred.

According to the survey:
•    45% of patients needed more than three years to obtain the proper diagnosis
•    65% of patients were forced to quit a job or cut back on their hours due to their symptoms
•    24% of patients saw more than ten doctors before receiving a proper diagnosis
•    86% of patients suffer from long-term side effects from not having been diagnosed sooner

Most experts agree that the best patient outcomes are achieved when Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases are diagnosed and treated as early as possible. “When a tick-borne illness is misdiagnosed, the disease-causing infection has more time to spread, which can lead to more severe or chronic health issues,” says Dr. Jyotsna Shah, President of IGeneX. “That can lead to months and even years of escalating costs for patients and their families due to ongoing doctor visits, diagnostic tests, ineffective medications, and other medical expenses.”

Tick-borne diseases are on the rise and prevention should be on everyone’s mind, particularly during the spring, summer, and early fall when ticks are most active. Prevention and early detection are part of the safety protocol extended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Researchers hope that the survey will help educate the public on the risks associated with delaying testing or relying on old testing techniques. "In our view, many patients are missed because much of the testing recommended by general practitioners is based on technology from 25 years ago," says Dr. Shah. "Science has progressed, and we can now give patients a much more accurate diagnosis than was available years ago."

For an infographic of key findings from the survey, please go here. For a complete view of the survey results, please go here. For more information on tick-borne diseases and how to get tested, please visit or