- Written by Administrator
- Category: Network News
- Published: 08 May 2012
GREENVILLE, NC--Leah Hampton of Waynesville, NC, is the winner of the 2012 Doris Betts Fiction Prize competition for her story “The Saint.” Hampton will receive a prize of $250, and her story will be published in the North Carolina Literary Review’s 2013 issue.
Leah Hampton teaches English at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina, where she currently serves as the Associate Director of WCU's Writing and Learning Commons. She is a native North Carolinian and a longtime resident of the Blue Ridge Mountains. She lives in Waynesville with her husband Joel.
NCLR Fiction Editor Liza Wieland selected Hampton’s story from twelve finalists, saying “I chose 'The Saint' as winner of the 2012 Doris Betts Fiction Prize because I was moved by the quiet, deliberate voice in the story, as well as by the energy of the language. I was also impressed by the story’s experiment with chronology, its demonstration that grief can dismantle time and thus in some way make time useful to us. This is a story that is both disarmingly wise and breathtakingly beautiful.”
Eighty-nine stories were submitted to this year’s competition. Wieland also noted Ronald Jackson’s “The Shower,” Kathryn Lovatt’s “A Cure For Dreams,” and Gregg Cusick’s “Entanglement” for honorable mentions, each of whom is an NCWN member. Other finalists were NCWN members Leah Berkowitz and Kermit Turner, as well as Allison Reavis, Nancy Richard, Beth Hatcher, Faith Holsaert, Haley Edwards, and Susan Walker.
Read Liza Wieland's comments on the Honorable Mentions here.
"The past year has been full of surprises and learning experiences," said Hampton."My background is in technical writing, so I've always been rather shy about my creative side. Recently I'd been intensely focused on some challenging work-related writing projects, and I was feeling really burned out. I became determined to take some time for myself and finally submit this story, which had been on the back burner for some time. It felt so good to finish it, to feed that part of myself. I am so thrilled and fulfilled by this whole experience."
NCWN member Thomas Wolf of Chapel Hill won the 2011 Doris Betts Fiction Prize for his story, "Boundaries."
Published since 1992 by East Carolina University and the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association, the North Carolina Literary Review has won numerous awards and citations. Fiction editor Liza Wieland is the author of three novels and three collections of short stories.
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.
- Written by Paul Jones
- Category: Network News
- Published: 17 April 2013
NORTH CAROLINA—Kevin Winchester of Waxhaw has won the 2013 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize for his short story, “Waiting on Something to Happen.”
Final judge Ruth Moose called Winchester’s piece “a powerful story, with sparse dialogue, at a critical juncture in the life of a tragic hero. Not a word is wasted, and the emotion skillfully underplayed so that the reader’s mind fills in the backstory. . . . A masterpiece of work.”
Moose, the author of three short-story collections and six collections of poetry, also awarded honorable mentions to Pittsboro’s Ashley Memory for her story “Once in a Blue Moon,” and to Jacob Appel of New York City for “Some Helpful Background for the Incoming Tenant.”
Moose described Memory’s entry as “a story with an academic setting that could have been cliché, but never for a moment stoops to that. Original, skillfully plotted, (with) a character you care about and a surprise ending that actually works.”
Winchester will receive a prize of $1,000, and his story, along with the two honorable mentions, will be considered for publication by The Thomas Wolfe Review.
Winchester is a North Carolina native who holds a BA in English from Wingate University and an MFA in Creative Writing from Queens University. He is currently the Director of the Writing Center at Wingate University. His short story collection, Everybody’s Gotta Eat, was released in 2009.
Ashley Memory is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, where she is now a communications director. Her debut novel, Naked and Hungry (2009), was named one of the season’s most promising by Library Journal. Appel has published short stories in more than 200 literary journals and won major competitions, including the 1998 Boston Review Short Fiction Contest. His story “Counting” was short-listed for the O.Henry Award in 2001.
Preliminary judge David Radavich of Charlotte selected six finalists, in addition to the winning story and honorable mentions: two additional stories by Jacob Appel, “Ashton Main’s Wayward Daughter” and “The Synagogue at the Edge of the Earth”; “Hollow Victory” by Devin ‘Nambe’ Bent of Santa Fe, NM; “The Changeling” by Mark Connelly of Milwaukee, WI; “Wind Chimes” by Asheville’s David Brendan Hopes; and “What Daddy Did” by Maxine Rock of Brevard.
“These stories made me know, without one ounce of doubt, that the short story is very much alive and thriving,” Moose said. “Bravo to all.”