About Laura Treacy Bentley

I am a poet, novelist, point-and-shoot photographer, and native West Virginian. Born in Hagerstown, Maryland, I have lived most of my life in Huntington, West Virginia, and divide my time between the mountains of West Virginia and a cabin in western Maryland. I am the author of a poetry collection, Lake Effect, a psychological thriller set in Ireland, The Silver Tattoo, and a poetry/photography chapbook, Looking for Ireland: An Irish-Appalachian Pilgrimage. I received a Fellowship Award for Literature from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts, and my poetry has been featured on the websites of A Prairie Home Companion, Poetry Daily, O Magazine, and Publishers Weekly. I served as the writer in residence for the Marshall University Writing Project and taught creative writing at the 2013 West Virginia Governor's School for the Arts at Davis & Elkins College.

My work has been widely published in the United States and Ireland in journals such as The New York Quarterly, Art Times, Poetry Ireland Review, Antietam Review, Rosebud, blink, Ginseng, Wind, The Stinging Fly, Kestrel, ABZ, Crannog, Now & Then, 3x10 plus, The New York Quarterly, Art Times, The Southern Poetry Anthology, Poetry Ireland, and The Stinging Fly, among others. Work is forthcoming in the next issue of Crannog, Goldenseal, and the Windward Review. I read with Ray Bradbury in 2003 and signed my books with Nora Roberts at her Turn the Page Bookstore in 2017. 

I completed a four-week writing residency in County Clare, Ireland, and read my poetry in Dublin at the Irish Writers Centre in June of 2000. Two of my poems were represented in a touring art exhibit, For Letter and Verse, at the Culture Center in Charleston, West Virginia. I was a featured writer at a literary symposium, Appalachians: Contemporary Cultural Perspective in September 2003 (Kennedy Museum of Art, Athens, Ohio) and co-taught a week of creative writing at Allegheny Echoes (Marlinton, West Virginia) in June 2004. 

In 2003 I was honored to read my poetry with the legendary Ray Bradbury in Venice, California. Two of my poems, "For Joel" and "Dowsing" were featured on Poetry Daily, and another, "Drinking Coffee at the Central City Café," can be found on the A Prairie Home Companion website. I won First Place for the 2010 Poetic Arts "Best Collaboration Award" along with photographer, Sharon Kennedy at the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, Virginia. One of my poems, "Keepsake," was chosen by guest editor Maria Shriver and the editors of O Magazine and is featured on Oprah's website. I served as writer in residence for three years at the Marshall University Writing Project and taught creative writing in 2013 at the West Virginia Governor's School for the Arts. I read my poetry in Marietta, Ohio, at the Riverside Artists Gallery on September 2 as part of their "Poetry in Art" exhibit. In 2017 my poetry was included in the anthology Eyes Glowing at the Edge of the Woods: Fiction and Poetry from West Virginia published by West Virginia University Press as well as in Voices of Unity: Coming Together, Falling Apart published by Mountain State Press. In 2018 I am pleased to be a featured author once again at the Dublin Irish Festival in Dublin, Ohio. 


The New York Quarterly

Poetry Ireland Review (Ireland)


The Stinging Fly (Ireland)

Antietam Review




Now & Then



Quilt World


Crannog (Ireland)

Art Times

Eureka Literary Magazine


Space and Time

Appalachian Journal

Green Bank Observatory

Blue Violin

California Quarterly

The Dickinsonian

Ellipsis: Literature and Art

Small Pond


Controlled Burn

Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel

Backbone Mountain Review

10X3 plus


Grey Sparrow Journal

WV Living magazine

Connotation Press

Neologism Poetry Journal & many others.


*Getting The Knack: Twenty Poetry Writing Exercises, co-authored by William Stafford and Stephen Dunning

*A Gathering at the Forks

*The Guyandotte Poets I

*Weeping With Those Who Weep

*Wild Sweet Notes: Fifty Years of West Virginia Poetry

*Appalachian Love Stories

*Crossing Troublesome: 25 Years of the Appalachian Writers Workshop

*Tobacco: A Literary Anthology

*Family Matters: Poems of Our Families

*Coal; Seeking the Swan

*Motif: Writing by Ear

*Hamilton Stone Review

*The Southern Poetry Anthology

*Fed From The Blade


*Eyes Glowing at the Edge of the Woods

*Voices on Unity: Coming Together, Falling Apart


*Fellowship Award for Literature in 1994 from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts

*Finalist in International Award section of the Scottish International Open Poetry Competition, 1996, ‘97, and ‘98

*Work/Study Grant from the Vermont Studio Center, 1994.

*Partial Scholarship to Catskill Poetry Workshop, 1995.

*Numerous awards in poetry at the WV Writers annual competition

*Two poems featured on Poetry Daily

*Poem featured on A Prairie Home Companion website

*First Place 2010 Best Collaboration "Poetic Art" Workhouse Arts Center

*Writer in Residence for the Marshall University Writing Project from 2007-2010.

*Poem featured on Oprah’s website by O Magazine

*Creative Writing instructor at the 2013 West Virginia Governor's School for the Arts.

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