Leanne E. Smith | Filmmakers on Folkstreams

Leanne E. Smith

Leanne E. Smith earned a BA (summa cum laude) and MA in English at East Carolina University (receiving the Robert H. Wright Alumni Leadership Award and several English department honors) and later an MFA in Creative Nonfiction at Goucher College.

She has worked as a newspaper/magazine journalist/photographer producing features and obituaries. In 2007, she joined the English faculty at ECU, where several of her photographs have appeared as cover images for Tar River Poetry. She has served as Associate Director of the ECU Poetry Forum, President of the Folk Arts Society of Greenville, square dance fiddle player for the Possum Hoppers, and board member of the North Carolina Folklore Society, and was an extra in the square dance scene for The Mountain Minor (2019). She enjoys creative nonfiction; Shakespeare, Britcoms, documentaries and travel shows, and vintage TV and films; international food; gardening; photography; and folk music, dance, lore, and culture.

Her writing credits include “Head-to-Toe: Deliberate Dressing and Accentuated Accessories in Flannery O’Connor’s ‘Revelation,’ ‘A Late Encounter with the Enemy,’ and ‘Everything That Rises Must Converge’” in the Flannery O’Connor Review (2008); four entries for Encyclopedia Virginia (2010); “‘All it needs now is eatin’”—Fish Stew and the Washington’s Day Fox Hunt at Albertson, NC” in the North Carolina Folklore Journal (2013); six entries from 2014-2016 for NCFolk, the NC Folklife Institute’s food blog; Alfred the Possum: On the Road with the Green Grass Cloggers (2015) [written by Leanne E. Smith & illustrated by Madalyn McLeod]; and “Cousins, A Few Times Removed: Eighty Years of Team Clogging’s Family Tree” in Country Dance + Song Online (2016).

She joined the Green Grass Cloggers in 1998, and she became Assistant Editor of the North Carolina Folklore Journal in 2012 and Editor in 2014. Floating Dancer (2016) is the first result of expanding her storytelling into film. She constantly seeks stories and currently splits her time mostly among Asheville, Boone, Greenville, and Ocracoke, North Carolina.