Working Title Farm is an artist’s collective, a home and support system for authors, singer/songwriters, musicians, and visual artists. Publishing books under the Working Title Farm imprint of River’s Edge Media, producing stage shows, creating interactive projects such as Trio, five year-long exhibits of words, music, and visual art, and producing records is the every day work happening on the back side of Howard’s Knob, the mountain overlooking Boone, North Carolina.
The mountain itself provides a refuge, a scenic place to create for Working Title Farmers who are writing or editing their next book or working on their next record. It serves as a meeting place for co-writing projects and a safe nest for nurturing new productions.
Working Title Farm is pine boards and Pendleton blankets, Frazier firs and the running waters of Doe Creek, fifteen bird feeders covered in rose breasted grosbeaks in summer and woodpeckers of every variety in winter. It’s does and their yearlings coming to the corn left for them on the coldest days. It’s fresh baked bread and pies. It’s “can you listen to this and tell me what you think?” It’s Gibsons and Taylors and Martins and the occasional 355 on guitar hangers waiting to be played, waiting to be part of the next new song. It’s reds and golds and the perfect burnt orange in October and the cleanest and purist and softest white in January. It’s framed pictures of sitting in the Mother Church to see Radney at the Opry and the dinners we share when we’re together. It’s live edge wood and pajama pants. It’s laughing at Eric, marveling at his talent, and being grateful for his heart.
Working Title Farm is listening to and nurturing our better angels, supporting and encouraging our family and our friends to find truth in their art, to believe that the next great work is in us, seeking its audience.
Working Title Farm is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains five hundred feet above Boone, North Carolina on the back side of Howard’s Knob. In three years the main house went from what Shari referred to as “the white box of whiteness” to a cozy cabin covered in spruce walls with vaulted ceilings and huge windows that overlook the surrounding mountains and hollers. The woods are filled with hardwoods. Red oaks, yellow poplars, sugar maples, and black birch trees cover the land that sits between an upper road bordered with blue spruce and the lower road that leads to Doe Creek, heard from the open windows of the cabins in the summer running over rocks, forming ice cycles on the rocks in winter. Guest quarters sit just behind the main cabin with plans to add more places for the many visiting artists that come to the mountain to create. Two fire pits, five separate outdoor vignettes provide privacy and settings for songwriters to co-write. Working Title Farm is constantly improving, becoming what it needs to provide the most comfort and inspiration.
Boone’s downtown is filled with independently owned shops and restaurants. Lost Province is the “official hangout” for Working Title Farmers. Patrons are often treated to surprise performances when our musicians and singers leave their pizza and craft beer long enough to sing a hit or join the band for a few songs. Mast General Store has everything from old fashion candy in barrels to Patagonia jackets and cast iron skillets.
Appalachian State University calls Boone home. More than 19,000 students are enrolled at “App” adding to the festive atmosphere. Boone is a college football town. The Mountaineers hold a 4-0 record for Bowl Games and pack Kidd Brewer Stadium for all home games.
Drive less than an hour from Working Title Farm to visit Linville Falls, a unique twin set of falls that drop 45 feet into the gorge named for the Linville river that cut its way through the mountain to form one of the most breathtaking places on earth where you’ll recognize scenes from Last of the Mohicans filmed throughout the Blue Ridge Mountains from Chimney Rock to Watauga County.
Grandfather Mountain, the highest point of the eastern part of the Blue Ridge, is a series of peaks that form the profile of an old man with a beard lying on his back looking at the sky. A wildlife habitat provides a home for injured animals; otters, elk, bald eagles, bears, mountain lions, owls, and deer that can’t survive on their own in the wild. The road up Grandfather can be seen in another film as Forrest Gump runs on the switchback curves that lead to the mile high bridge.