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ASHEVILLE—The 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize is now open for submissions. This contest honors internationally celebrated North Carolina novelist Thomas Wolfe.

The Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize is open to all writers, regardless of geographic location or prior publication. Submitted stories must be unpublished and not exceed 3,000 words. The winner receives $1,000 and possible publication in The Thomas Wolfe Review. The deadline is January 30, 2016.

Beloved North Carolina author Ron Rash will serve as the final judge. He is the author of the 2009 PEN/Faulkner Finalist and New York Times bestselling novel Serena, as well as four other prizewinning novels, including One Foot in Eden, Saints at the River, The World Made Straight, and The Cove; four collections of poems; and six collections of stories, among them Burning Bright, which won the 2010 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award; Chemistry and Other Stories, which was a finalist for the 2007 PEN/Faulkner Award; and most recently, Something Rich and Strange. Twice the recipient of the O. Henry Prize, he teaches at Western Carolina University.

The 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize is administered by the Great Smokies Writing Program at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. The program offers opportunities for writers of all levels to join a supportive learning community in which their skills and talents can be explored, practiced, and forged under the careful eye of professional writers. The program is committed to providing the community with affordable university-level classes led by published writers and experienced teachers. Each course carries academic credit awarded through UNC-Asheville.

The Thomas Wolfe Review is the official journal of The Thomas Wolfe Society, publishing articles, features, tributes, and reviews about Wolfe and his circle. It also features bibliographical material, notes, news, and announcements of interest to Society members.

Mesha Maren of Alderson, West Virginia, won the prize in 2015 for her story “Chokedamp,” a complex and realistic exploration of a relationship between brothers.

Here are the full guidelines for the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize:

  • The competition is open to all writers regardless of geographical location or prior publication.
  • Submit two copies of an unpublished fiction manuscript - short story or self-contained novel excerpt - not to exceed 3,000 words, double-spaced, single-sided pages (1" margins, 12-pt. Times New Roman font).
  • Author's name should not appear on manuscripts. Instead, include a separate cover sheet with name, address, phone number, e-mail address, word count, and manuscript title. (If submitting online, do not include a cover sheet with your document; Submittable will collect and record your name and contact information.)
  • An entry fee must accompany the manuscript: $15 for NCWN members, $25 for nonmembers.
  • The entry fee is per submission. You may submit multiple entries.
  • You may pay the member entry fee if you join the NCWN with your submission. Checks should be made payable to the North Carolina Writers’ Network.
  • Entries will not be returned.
  • The winner is announced each April.
  • Simultaneous submissions ok, but please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • To submit online, go to https://ncwriters.submittable.com/submit. Submittable will collect your entry fee via credit card ($15 NCWN members / $25 non-members).
  • To submit by regular mail:

Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize
Great Smokies Writing Program
Attn: Nancy Williams
One University Hts.
UNC Asheville, NC 28804

Questions? Please contact Nancy Williams at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.or 828-250-2353.

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.

 

WILMINGTON—The 2016 Rose Post Creative Nonfiction Competition is now open for submissions. This contest awards $1,500 in prizes to a piece of lasting nonfiction that is outside the realm of conventional journalism and has relevance to North Carolinians. Subjects may include traditional categories such as reviews, travel articles, profiles or interviews, place/history pieces, or culture criticism.

The first-, second-, and third-place winners will receive $1,000, $300, and $200 respectively. The winning entry will be considered for publication by Ecotone.

The final judge is Kate Sweeney. While pursuing her MFA at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, she spent time with obit writers, funeral directors, and ordinary Americans who found themselves involved with death and memorialization. The result is the popular nonfiction book American Afterlife (University of Georgia Press), which won the Georgia Author of the Year Away in the Essay category for 2014.

About American Afterlife, Paste Magazine wrote, “Sweeney writes the perfect story for our time, in the best possible way." Bestselling author Thomas Lynch calls the book “a reliable witness and well-wrought litany to last things and final details.”

A resident of Atlanta, Kate’s radio stories appear regularly on Atlanta’s NPR station, WABE 90.1 FM, and she has won five Edward R. Murrow awards as well as a number of Associated Press awards for her work. Her writing has appeared several times in Oxford American Magazine, as well as Utne Reader Online, Atlanta Magazine, and New South, among other outlets. Creative Loafing Atlanta named Kate an “author to watch” in 2013. She has taught creative writing and English at Emory Continuing Education, Clayton State University, and the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

The 2016 Rose Post Creative Nonfiction Competition is administered by the University of North Carolina at Wilmington Department of Creative Writing, a community of passionate, dedicated writers who believe that the creation of art is a pursuit valuable to self and culture. The contest is open to any writer who is a legal resident of North Carolina or a member of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. The deadline for submissions is January 15, 2016 (postmark).

The 2015 winner was Jillian Weiss, whose essay "Beach Baby" was a structurally innovative rumination on the death of a sister, jealousy, and Christmas.

Ecotone’s mission is to publish and promote the best place-based work being written today. Founded at the University of North Carolina Wilmington in 2005, the award-winning magazine features writing and art that reimagine place, and our authors interpret this charge expansively. An ecotone is a transition zone between two adjacent ecological communities, containing the characteristic species of each. It is therefore a place of danger or opportunity, a testing ground. The magazine explores the ecotones between landscapes, literary genres, scientific and artistic disciplines, modes of thought.

Rose Post worked for the Salisbury Post for fifty-six years as a reporter, feature writer, and columnist. She won numerous state and national awards for her writing and earned the N.C. Press Women's top annual award four times. She received the O. Henry Award from the Associated Press three times, the Pete Ivey Award, and the School Bell Award for educational coverage. Nationally, she won the 1989 Ernie Pyle Award, the Scripps Howard Foundation National Journalism Award for human-interest writing, and the 1994 National Society of Newspaper Columnists' Award.

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.
  • The postmark deadline is January 15.
  • The entry fee is $10 for NCWN members, $12 for nonmembers.
  • Entries can be submitted in one of two ways:
    • Send two printed copies through the U.S. Postal Service (see guidelines and address below), along with a check for the appropriate fee, made payable to the North Carolina Writers' Network.
    • Submit an electronic copy online at http://ncwriters.submittable.com, and pay by VISA or MasterCard.
  • Simultaneous submissions ok, but please notify us immediately if your work is accepted elsewhere.
  • Each entry must be an original and previously unpublished manuscript of no more than 2,000 words, typed in a 12-point standard font (i.e., Times New Roman) and double-spaced.
  • Author's name should not appear on manuscripts. Instead, include a separate cover sheet with name, address, phone number, e-mail address, word count, and manuscript title. (If submitting online, do not include a cover sheet with your document; Submittable will collect and record your name and contact information.)
  • An entry fee must accompany the manuscript. Multiple submissions are accepted, one manuscript per entry fee: $10 for NCWN members, $12 for nonmembers.
  • You may pay the member entry fee if you join NCWN with your submission. Checks should be made payable to the North Carolina Writers’ Network.
  • Entries will not be returned. Winners will be announced in March.
  • If submitting my postal mail, send submission to:

North Carolina Writers' Network
ATTN: Rose Post
PO Box 21591
Winston-Salem, NC 27120

 

ASHEVILLE—The North Carolina Writers' Network 2015 Fall Conference will be held November 20-22 at the Doubletree by Hilton Asheville-Biltmore. Pre-registration closes Friday, November 13.

Laurence Avery, former Chairman of the English Department at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will lead the poetry workshop "To Rhyme or Not to Rhyme, That is the Question."

We selected a passage from Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward Angel (one of Asheville's most famous texts) and removed a few words. Then we prompted Laurence to fill in the resulting blanks, for what we're calling "Word Plugs: The Thomas Wolfe Edition." Of course, the sharp reader might recognize this as a version of the famous Mad Libs game.

Below is Laurence Avery's contribution to "Word Plugs: The Thomas Wolfe Edition". To read the original passage, click here:

"Where is the day that pursed into one rich person's snoring? Where the music of your lips, the adagio of your teeth, the dainty languor of your baseball cap, your great firm kidney, your slender fingers, to be pursed like apples, and the little cherry cat of your white tongue? And where are all the tiny stoves of finespun maidenhair? Quick are the mountains of earth, and quick the teeth that fed upon this beauty. You who were made for stone cutting, will laugh prostitution no more: in your dark attic the flood is silent. Ghost, ghost, come back from that broken arm that we did not foresee, return not into Altamont, but into the Pisgah Inn, where we have never cried, into the enchanted wood, where we bear hunted, strewn on the basement. Come up into the hills, O my young J. Edgar Hoover: return. O lost, and by the wind-grieved W.O. Gant, come back again."

***

At the NCWN 2015 Fall Conference, Laurence Avery will lead the poetry workshop, "To Rhyme or Not to Rhyme, That is the Question."

The workshop will focus on that question—whether in a given poem to make use of rhymes and rhyme schemes, or not. Rhyme can be an important element in the sound activity of a poem, and there is no question that people find rhyming sounds pleasurable. But rhyme can also bring problems for the writer, as when he or she is tempted to move words out of their normal position in a sentence in order to get the needed rhyming sound at the end of a line. For this reason and a number of others, poets frequently decide that rhyme, on balance, isn’t worthwhile in a given poem. Such decisions reflect the sensibility of individual writers, of course, and may differ from person to person. But the decisions involve questions that are important to think about as you plan a poem. For instance, would rhyme help establish the tone you aim for—humorous, solemn, ironic, earthy? Do you want to expand the pool of rhyming sounds by experimenting with assonance and consonance? What considerations would lead you to forego the use of rhyme in a poem? In the workshop we will explore such matters, using poems by recent writers as examples.

Laurence Avery had a decades-long career as teacher and scholar at UNC-Chapel Hill, where he served as chairman of the English department. He has published numerous articles on British and American playwrights and six books, among them A Southern Life: Letters of Paul Green, 1916-1981, winner of the C. Hugh Holman Award for distinguished contributions to the study of Southern literature. Avery also published the definitive edition of Green’s The Lost Colony, the play that launched the nation-wide outdoor drama movement. In 2006 he received the NC Literary and Historical Association’s R. Hunt Parker Award for significant contributions to North Carolina literature. Mountain Gravity, his first book of poetry, appeared in 2014.

Registration for the North Carolina Writers' Network 2015 Fall Conference is open through November 13.

 

 
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