White Cross School Blog


NC Literary Hall of Fame




GREENVILLE—Robert Wallace of Durham is the winner of the 2017 Doris Betts Fiction Prize competition for his story "The Science of Air." He will receive a prize of $250 from the North Carolina Writers’ Network, and his story will be published in the North Carolina Literary Review’s 2018 issue.

Wallace, who also received the 2010 Betts Prize for "As Breaks the Wave Upon the Sea" (published in NCLR 2011), is a recipient of an Emerging Artist Grant from the Durham Arts Council and a Writer’s Fellowship from the North Carolina Arts Council. He has published one novel and has had fiction and nonfiction published in various venues, including The News & Observer in Raleigh, Wellspring, and The O. Henry Festival Stories. His story "As Breaks the Wave Upon the Sea" was also featured in Brian Glover’s essay on teaching with the North Carolina Literary Review, published in NCLR Online 2016.

NCLR Fiction Editor Liza Wieland selected Wallace’s story from fifteen finalists, saying "In 'The Silence of Air,' guilt, sadness, and wisdom conspire to make a gracefully introspective work of fiction. I admire this story for its deftly rendered sense of place and sensory detail, its reserve and precision.”

Just under 150 stories were submitted to this year’s competition. Wieland also picked "Banjo" by W.A. Polf for second place and publication in NCLR Online 2018. Wieland calls "Banjo" a "brilliant story about responsibility to family and the impossibility of honoring it. The prose is quiet and careful, but the characters’ violence of feeling make for a tension that captures the truth of family relations."

Polf, a retired hospital executive, moved from New York City to North Carolina to write. His stories have appeared in The Milo Review, Still Point Arts Quarterly, and The Tishman Review, and he was a finalist for the 2013 Glimmer Train Short Story Award.

Other finalists for the 2017 Doris Betts Fiction Prize were "True Story" by Gary V. Powell, "Broken Things" by Jane Shlensky, "Village Life" by Laura Moretz, "The Tiniest Sound of Breaking" by A.G. Kramer, "The Gate" by Laura Golden, "In Guantanamo" by Callie Lewis, "My Name on a Grain of Rice" by Kathryn Etters Lovatt, "Dysfunctional Slumber Parties" by Alli Marshall, "The Mission" by Alan Michael Parker, "Vondalee Puts on Her Cat Eye Glasses" by Vicki Lane, "The Old Americans" by Bryan Giemza, "Abstracting" by Mason Boyles, and "Keeping Company in Lucama" by Mathew Gingrich.

The annual Doris Betts Fiction Prize honors the late novelist, short story writer, and NC Literary Hall of Fame inductee Doris Betts, the first to call North Carolina "the writingest state." The competition is sponsored by the non-profit North Carolina Writers’ Network, the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to all writers at all stages of development. Betts’ support of writers, both her UNC students and countless other protégés, is manifested in the Network’s reminder that, particularly in North Carolina, "Nobody Writes Alone." 

For additional information about the North Carolina Writers’ Network, visit www.ncwriters.org.

Published since 1992 at East Carolina University, the North Carolina Literary Review has won numerous awards and citations. Fiction Editor Liza Wieland is the author of four novels and three collections of short stories. A two-year subscription to NCLR will include the 2017 issue, featuring the winner from the 2016 Betts competition, as well as the 2018 issue, featuring Wallace’s winning story from this year’s competition. Subscribe at www.nclr.ecu.edu/subscriptions.


GRANITE FALLS—On Saturday, April 15, Granite Falls Brewing Company will release their biggest and most exclusive beer yet: the Tailypo Belgian Style Quad.

Ten percent of all proceeds from Tailypo will be donated to the North Carolina Writers' Network to support the Network's efforts to connect, promote, and educate our state's writers and wordsmiths.

Tailypo is the first in Granite Falls Brewing Company's new Appalachian Storytellers series based on the legends and tall tales that arose in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, where their brewery was born.

Aged in thirty-year-old Nicaraguan rum barrels and ringing in at an imposing 14.9 percent ABV, it is a brew for the discerning beer lover. Notes of raisin, date, and fig play with undertones of chocolate, molasses, and brown sugar to create a complex tapestry of flavor that is both unique and unforgettable.

One of the largest writing organizations in the country, the North Carolina Writers' Network will host their annual Spring Conference on Saturday, April 22, on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Former NC poet laureate and NC Literary Hall of Fame inductee Fred Chappell will give the Keynote Address. Programming includes workshops and sessions on the craft and business of writing, faculty readings, open mics, and the third annual Slush Pile Live!

For more information about the NC Writers' Network, and to register for Spring Conference, visit www.ncwriters.org.

Granite Falls Brewing Company is proud to be located in the historic Granite Bottling Works (1903-1978) and Pepsi-Cola Bottling (1978-2012) plant in downtown Granite Falls. The original 1903 Bolick’s bottling plant still stands within the brick walls along the left side of the building and lobby interior. A panoramic view of the Blue Ridge Mountains runs the rear of the building.

For more information about Granite Falls Brewing, visit www.granitefallsbrewing.com.


GREENSBORO—Pre-registration for the North Carolina Writers' Network 2017 Spring Conference closes Sunday, April 16. While on-site registration will be available, attendees can save more than 25 percent by registering early.

Spring Conference happens Saturday, April 22, in the MHRA Building and Curry Auditorium on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Register here.

Not only does pre-registration save a substantial amount of money, it also affords conferencegoers the opporutnity to sign up for "Lunch with an Author," a program feature not available to those who register on-site.

"Lunch with an Author" allows registrants to share a meal with the faculty member of their choice. Because lunch is pre-ordered as part of this program, registrants will also spend less time waiting in line for food and more time getting to know their fellow writers. "Lunch with an Author" is an intimate, casual feature that has been very popular the past several years, and slots do fill quickly.

At Spring Conference, North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame inductee and former NC poet laureate Fred Chappell will give the Keynote Address. There will be faculty readings and open mics (sign up on-site!), and the third annual Slush Pile Live, where a panel of editors responds to anonymous submissions being read aloud in front of a live audience.

Register now.

Spring Conference is sponsored in part by The MFA in Creative Writing Program at UNCG, which will provide free parking for Spring Conference registrants in the Oakland Avenue Parking Deck, across Forest Street from the MHRA Building (behind Yum Yum Better Ice Cream and Old Town Draught House). Other sponsors include 88.5 FM WFDD: Public Radio for the Piedmont, the News & Record in Greensboro, and the North Carolina Arts Council.


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