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Introducing Fall Conference Exhibitors: Part I

The North Carolina Writers’ Network 2017 Fall Conference runs November 3-5 at the Holiday Inn Resort in Wrightsville Beach.

While the weekend is jam-packed with classes, panels, readings, and cammaraderie, we always recommend setting aside some time to stroll through the exhibit hall. This year, as every year, our vendors represent some of the best and brightest literary organizaitons in North Carolina, and their staff would like nothing better than to tell you all about their programs, who they’re publishing, what they’re into, and offer insight into the current state of books.

We’ll be introducing our exhibitors over the next couple of weeks in a four-part blog series. So without further ado, here are four exhibitors that will be joining us November 3-5 in Wrightsville Beach!

Bull City Press publishes a small quarterly magazine, Inch; poetry chapbooks through the Frost Place Chapbook Fellowship; and the Bull City Poetry Prize series. Established in Durham in 2006, their authors include Michael Parker (Everything, Then and Since, 2017) and Emilia Phillips (Beneath the Ice Fish Like Souls Look Alike, 2015). In 2015, they launched a line of fiction and nonfiction chapbooks when they merged with Origami Zoo Press. Inch accepts flash fiction and nonfiction under 750 words, and poetry that is one to nine lines in length. Submissions are open year-round. Founding Editor Ross White is on faculty, and will serve as a panelist for “Finding Readers through Lit Mags.” And two lucky raffle prize winners will win a Bull City Press book, so be sure to buy some raffle tickets!

Carolina Wren Press recently aquired Winston-Salem-based John F. Blair, Publisher, and plans to launch their merged list on January 1, 2018, as Blair. Previously, Carolina Wren Press strove to represent writers who were historically neglected by mainstream publishing, and to develop diverse and vital audiences through publishing, outreach, and educational programs. This Durham-based press sponsors the annual Bakwin Award for Writing by a Woman that honors full-length prose work (novel, short story collection, or memoir) by an author who is a woman, as well as the Lee Smith Novel Prize (now open for submissions), which awards $1,000 and publication to a novel by an author from, living in, or writing about the American South.  CWP authors include Dana Koster, Michael Ferris Smith, and North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame inductee Jaki Shelton Green. John F. Blair, Publisher, was founded in 1954. Several hundred titles later, “through the years, literary gems that sold minimal copies were published alongside popular cookbooks and travel guides.” Keep an eye on the website for more news about the aquisition. CWP editor Robin Miura will serve as a panelist for “Finding Readers through Lit Mags” at the NCWN 2017 Fall Conference.

Ecotone magazine was founded by the MFA Program in Creative Writing at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in 2005. Its impact was immediate: the inaugural issue featured an essay by eventual 2016 North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame inductee Clyde Edgerton; poetry by and an interview with eventual 2008 National Book Award winner Mark Doty; and an essay by David Gessner, current host of the National Geographic show Call of the Wild. Ecotone seeks to “champion innovative and underrepresented work” and explore the ecotones “between landscapes, literary genres, scientific and artistic disciplines, modes of thought.”

Lookout Books is the literary book imprint of the Department of Creative Writing at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and seeks out emerging and historically underrepresented voices, as well as overlooked gems by established writers. In a publishing landscape increasingly indifferent to literary innovation, Lookout offers a haven for books that matter. Recent Lookout books include We Show What We Have Learned by Clare Beams and Honey from the Lion by Matthew Neil Null. Ecotone publisher and co-founder of Lookout Books, Emily Louise Smith, will serve as a Manuscript Mart reviewer at Fall Conference and sit on the Sunday morning breakfast panel, “Agents & Editors.”

The Greensboro Review, published by the MFA in Creative Writing Department at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, has been “old school” since 1965. Longtime assistant editor Terry L. Kennedy recently took the helm as editor, and Terry will sit on the panel “Finding Readers through Lit Mags” on the Sunday of the NCWN Fall Conference. Works from TGR are consistently cited and anthologized in the Pushcart Prize, New Stories from the South, Best American Short Stories, and other annual collections honoring the finest writing by both established and emerging talent. TGR offers two awards of $500—one award for fiction, one for poetry—and the winning manuscripts appear in the spring issue. TGR authors include Claudia Emerson, Alan Shapiro, Nataasha Trethewey, and Kevin Wilson.

Registration for the NCWN 2017 Fall Conference is now open!