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NC Literary Hall of Fame

 

 

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SOUTHERN PINES—The North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame will welcome five new inductees in an October ceremony at the Weymouth Center in Southern Pines.

James W. Clark, Jr., Randall Kenan, Jill McCorkle, Penelope Niven, and Marsha White Warren will join the sixty inductees currently enshrined.

The North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame celebrates and promotes the state’s rich literary heritage by commemorating its leading authors and encouraging the continued flourishing of great literature. Inductions are held every other year. A list of inductees, as well as samples of their work and video clips of past inductions, can be found online at www.nclhof.org.

Dr. James W. Clark, Jr. is Professor Emeritus of English at North Carolina State University. A native of Vaughan in Warren County, Clark holds degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University, and focused his academic career primarily on the cultural geography and literary history of North Carolina, his native state. He has served as president of The Thomas Wolfe Society, The North Carolina Literary and Historical Association, and won the R. Hunt Parker Award for his contributions. In 2017, he completed a decade as president of The Paul Green Foundation, and still serves as president of The North Caroliniana Society.

Randall Kenan, a native of Duplin County, is the author of a novel, A Visitation of Spirits; two works of nonfiction, Walking on Water: Black American Lives at the Turn of the Twenty-First Century and The Fire This Time; and an award-winning collection of stories, Let the Dead Bury Their Dead. He edited and wrote the introductions for The Cross of Redemption: The Uncollected Writings of James Baldwin and The Carolina Table: North Carolina Writers on Food. Among his awards are a Guggenheim Fellowship, The Whiting Writers’ Award, the North Carolina Award, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Rome Prize. He is professor of English and Comparative Literature at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Jill McCorkle has the distinction of having her first two novels published on the same day in 1984. Since then she has published four other novels and four collections of short stories. Five of her books have been named New York Times notable books, while three of her stories have appeared in Best American Short Stories anthologies. McCorkle has received the New England Booksellers Award, the John Dos Passos Prize for Excellence in Literature, and the North Carolina Award for Literature. She is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. McCorkle has taught at UNC-Chapel Hill, Tufts, and Brandeis where she was the Fannie Hurst Visiting Writer. She was a Briggs-Copeland Lecturer in Fiction at Harvard for five years where she also chaired Creative Writing. She currently teaches creative writing in the MFA Program at NC State University and is a core faculty member of the Bennington College Writing Seminars. A native of Lumberton, she lives with her husband, photographer Tom Rankin, in Hillsborough.

Penelope Niven was the critically acclaimed author of Carl Sandburg: A Biography; Steichen: A Biography, and Thornton Wilder: A Life. She was also co-author, with the actor James Earl Jones, of Voices and Silences. Carl Sandburg: Adventures of a Poet, a biography for children, received a 2004 International Reading Association Prize “for exceptionally distinguished literature for children.” Her memoir Swimming Lessons was published in 2004. Niven received the North Carolina Award for Literature, the state’s highest civilian honor, for her work as a writer and a teacher. She founded and directed the national Carl Sandburg Oral History Project, and was three times a recipient of National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships. She lectured across the United States and in Switzerland, Canada, and Great Britain, and was principal consultant for the PBS film biography Carl Sandburg—Echoes and Silences. She also served as a consultant for television films on Sandburg, Jones, Steichen, and Wilder. At the time of her death in 2014, she lived in Winston-Salem, where she spent twelve years as Writer-in-Residence at Salem College. A native of Waxhaw, she also held two honorary doctorates, among other honors and awards.

Marsha White Warren was an elementary school teacher, poet, and children’s book author when she became Executive Director of the North Carolina Writers’ Network in 1987, only two years after its founding. She would serve in that role until 1996. During those years she helped Sam Ragan develop and open the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame, as well as serving on numerous state and national literary boards and as a consultant to literary centers in Tennessee, Massachusetts, and Idaho. In 1991, she also became director of the Paul Green Foundation and is still with the Foundation after twenty-seven years. In that position, she has overseen $575,000 in grants to nonprofits that support the arts and human rights. Her awards include the John Tyler Caldwell Award for the Humanities, R. Hunt Parker Memorial Award for Lifetime Contributions to Literature, Sam Ragan Award for Contributions to the Fine Arts, and an Honorary Doctor of Letters from St. Andrews College. She lives in Chapel Hill.

The North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame was founded in 1996, under the leadership of poet laureate Sam Ragan, and is a program of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. Since 2008, the Network and the Weymouth Center collaborate with the North Carolina Center for the Book, the North Carolina Humanities Council, and the North Carolina Collection of the Wilson Library at UNC-Chapel Hill to produce the induction ceremony and to promote the NCLHOF and North Carolina’s literary heritage.

For more information, visit the NC Literary Hall of Fame at www.nclhof.org or the North Carolina Writers’ Network at www.ncwriters.org.

 

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GREENVILLE—The 2018 Doris Betts Fiction Prize is now open for submissions.

The competition is for previously unpublished short stories up to 6,000 words and is open to any writer who is a legal resident of North Carolina or a member of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. North Carolina Literary Review subscribers with North Carolina connections (lives or has lived in NC) are also eligible. The winner receives $250 and publication in North Carolina Literary Review. The postmark deadline is February 15.

To submit, click here.

This year's final judge is Stephanie Powell Watts, winner of the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence for her debut story collection, We Are Taking Only What We Need (Ecco Press, 2012), also named one of 2013’s Best Summer Reads by O: The Oprah Magazine. Her debut novel, No One Is Coming to Save Us (Ecco Press, 2017), follows the return of a successful native son to his home in North Carolina and his attempt to join the only family he ever wanted but never had. Her short fiction has been included in two volumes of the Best New Stories from the South anthology and honored with a Pushcart Prize. Born in the foothills of North Carolina, with a Ph.D from the University of Missouri and a BA from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, she now lives with her husband and son in Pennsylvania where she is an associate professor at Lehigh University.

For over twenty years, East Carolina University and the North Carolina Literary & Historical Association have published the North Carolina Literary Review, a journal devoted to showcasing the Tar Heel State’s literary excellence. Described by one critic as “everything you ever wanted out of a literary publication but never dared to demand,” NCLR has won numerous awards and citations.

Doris Betts was the author of three short story collections and six novels. She won three Sir Walter Raleigh awards, the Southern Book Award, the North Carolina Award for Literature, the John Dos Passos Prize, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Medal for the short story, among others. Beloved by her students, she was named the University of North Carolina Alumni Distinguished Professor of English in 1980. She was a 2004 inductee of the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame.

Robert Wallace of Durham won the 2017 Doris Betts Fiction Prize for his story "The Science of Air," where "guilt, sadness, and wisdom conspire to make a gracefully introspective work of fiction." This was the second Doris Betts Fiction Prize for Robert Wallace.

Here are the complete guidelines:

  • The competition is open to any writer who is a legal resident of North Carolina or a member of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. North Carolina Literary Review subscribers with North Carolina connections (lives or has lived in NC) are also eligible.
  • The competition is for previously unpublished short stories up to 6,000 words. Multiple entries ok, but each requires a separate entry fee. No novel excerpts. Stories do NOT have to relate to NCLR’s annual special feature topic.
  • The deadline is February 15.
  • Simultaneous submissions ok, but please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • Submit previously unpublished stories online at https://nclr.submittable.com/submit. Submittable will collect your entry fee via credit card ($10 NCWN members or NCLR subscribers / $20 for non-members/non-subscribers).
  • To pay submission fees by check or money order, make payable to the North Carolina Writers Network and mail to: Ed Southern, PO Box 21591, Winston-Salem, NC 27120- 1591
  • Documents must be Microsoft Word or .rtf files. Stories should be double-spaced. Author's name should not appear on manuscripts. (Submittable will collect and record your name and contact information.) If you have any problems submitting electronically, email NCLR's This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • If submitting by mail, mail story manuscript with a cover sheet providing name, address, email address, word count, and manuscript title, to:

NCLR
ECU Mailstop
555 English
Greenville, NC 27858-4353
(but mail payment to the Network as per instructions above)

The winner and finalists will be announced by May 1. The winning story and select finalists will be published in the next year’s issue of the North Carolina Literary Review.

Questions may be directed to Margaret Bauer, Editor of the North Carolina Literary Review, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The nonprofit North Carolina Writers’ Network is the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to writers at all stages of development. For additional information, visit www.ncwriters.org.

 

WINSTON-SALEM—Small presses are the lifeblood of the publishing industry, able to take risks and provide a platform for traditionally underrepresented voices. What they sometimes lack in marketing budget is often made up for by the personal attention they give their authors and the quality of the product they produce.

So how exactly do you go about getting your book published by a small press?

On Thursday, January 18, at 7:00 pm, the publisher and chief editor of Prospective Press, Jason T. Graves, will lead the online class "Whither Small Press?" 

Registration is now open.

This course is capped at forty (40) registrants, first-come, first-served. There is a $25 fee to register.

Are you considering approaching a small press with your manuscript? Jason T. Graves will discuss the best practices for querying and working with small publishers, and the benefits and limitations thereof. Topics will include:

  • Investigating the press—do your homework
  • Querying—there are rules for a reason
  • So you’re accepted…what next?
  • Contracts and publishing agreements—glad tidings and red flags
  • Realistic expectations 1—what we can and cannot do
  • Realistic expectations 2—yes, it really will take that long (to do it well)
  • How to work with the team—editors, illustrators, designers, and marketers
  • Realistic expectations 3—you will need to pull, too
  • Miscellany and Errata
  • Questions and Answers

Jason T. Graves is the publisher and chief editor at Prospective Press, a traditional publisher of genre fiction and select nonfiction titles, currently with twenty-five books in print and over thirty authors represented. The company now encompasses seven traditional imprints and two hybrid imprints for institutional/academic clients and individuals. He is an illustrator, the author of four novels, and was once punched—lightly—by Muhammad Ali.

"Whither Small Press?" is the North Carolina Writers' Network's second offering in their 2017-2018 Winter Series of online classes.

"This program is a great way for writers from all over North Carolina to connect without having the hassle of driving somewhere and finding parking," said NCWN communications director Charles Fiore. "Online classes offer top-shelf instruction for a fraction of the cost, and the software itself is very intuitive and easy to use."

The online class "Whither Small Press" is available to anyone with an internet connection, or who even owns just a telephone. Instructions for accessing the online class on Thursday, January 18, will be sent to registrants no less than twenty-four hours prior to the start of class.

Register here.

The nonprofit North Carolina Writers’ Network is the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to writers at all stages of development. For additional information, visit www.ncwriters.org.

 

 
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