White Cross School Blog


NC Literary Hall of Fame




WINSTON-SALEM—Most people, when they turn thirty, are just getting started.

The North Carolina Writers' Network has been around long enough to become an institution: one of the nation’s oldest and largest statewide writers’ groups; one of the most accepting and accessible writers’ groups of any size, anywhere; a major presence in the cultural life of this state, and a model for literary and cultural organizations in other states.

The Network is far too young, though, to let our joints get stiff and creaky, to get too set in our ways. We have so much more to do, to be, to try. We're just getting started, too.

For that, we need your help.

This year we are asking all of our members to give $30 or More for 30 and More: a donation of $30 (or more) to make sure the North Carolina Writers’ Network is around for another thirty years (and more).

Your gift of $30 or More will help make sure that North Carolina’s writers to come will still find the community, opportunity, and excellence that they need. Your donation will help fund new and existing programs and services, and will help us shore up our operating reserve against a rainy day. Your support will help make sure that North Carolina is still the Writingest State in 2045, 2075, 2115 . . .

You can make your $30 or More donation with a credit card, here, or by calling 336-293-8844 or 919-308-3228.

Thank you for being a part of the Network’s first thirty years—or, as future members will call them, Chapter One.

The North Carolina Writers’ Network is a nonprofit 501(c) (3). For more information, visit www.ncwriters.org.


GREENVILLE, NC—Brad Field of Wilmington is the winner of the 2015 Doris Betts Fiction Prize for his story “Achmed’s Lesson.” Field 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 25th issue in 2016.

A playwright, drama anthology editor, and retired university English professor, having taught at Wayne State University in Detroit for the majority of his career, Brad Field lives in Wilmington, then spends summers on Lake Michigan.

NCLR Fiction Editor Liza Wieland selected Field’s story from ten finalists, saying, “I admire 'Achmed's Lesson' for its cultural critique certainly, but also for the deceptive simplicity of the writing. To me, it read like the best sort of translation. The meaning is crystal clear, but below the surface of the narration, the original simmers in subtle invitation. I think it's quite remarkable to capture this quality in a story written in English; I felt both comfortably at home and transported to a world I didn't—but wanted to—know.”

Wieland also selected “Eminent Domain” by Kathryn Etters Lovatt for second place and publication, applying Faulkner’s famous lines, “‘The past is never dead. It’s not even past.’ ‘Eminent Domain’ illustrates the truth of this statement through deft description and the painful but compelling resilience of the first person narrator, Amy. The ending is the very definition of bittersweet, and will stay in my mind for a long time.” Lovatt, who has a vacation home in Southport, but lives most of the year in Camden, SC, is also a former winner and a finalist in previous Betts competitions.

A record 121 stories were submitted to this year’s competition. The other finalists are Heather Adams of Raleigh for “White Iris,” Debra Madaris Efird of Harrisburg for “Palette of Love,” Lana Hendershott of Hendersonville for “Kind of Crazy,” Debra Lee of Rocky Mount for “Dale Earnhardt and the Rapture,” Ian Oeschger of Wilmington for “Lowcountry Boil,” Denise Sherman of Raleigh for “The Color Wheel,” Robert Wallace of Durham for “The Disobedience of Love,” and Jude Whelchel of Asheville for “Body Talk Soft, Body Talk Loud.”

The annual Doris Betts Fiction Prize honors the late novelist and short-story writer Doris Betts, and is sponsored by the non-profit North Carolina Writers’ Network, 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.

Published since 1992 at East Carolina University, the North Carolina Literary Review has won numerous awards and citations, most recently the 2014 Phoenix Award for Significant Editorial Achievement from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals. Fiction Editor Liza Wieland is the author of three collections of short stories and four novels, including Land of Enchantment, just out this year.

A two-year subscription to NCLR will include the 2015 issue, featuring the winner from the 2014 Betts competition, as well as the 2016 issue, featuring Field’s winning story from this year’s competition. Find subscription information at http://www.nclr.ecu.edu/subscriptions.


GREENSBORO―Pre-registration for the North Carolina Writers’ Network 2015 Spring Conference closed on Sunday. But on-site registration will be available the day of the conference—Saturday, April 18—starting at 8:00 am in the MHRA Building on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Spring Conference offers intensive workshops in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, as well as publisher exhibits, on-site "Lunch with an Author," readings, an open mic for conference participants, and the all-new program for 2015, Slush Pile Live!

After a record-setting number of pre-registrations, space is only available in the following workshops. Please note, even these offerings are close to full, so space is extremely limited:

General session events are open to all conferencegoers, but the Open Mic is first come, first served. If you haven’t yet registered for Spring Conference but plan on attending, the Network recommends you get there early on Saturday, April 18.

Because of the unprecedented number of attendees this year, the Network thanks registrants in advance for their patience and cooperation as volunteers and staff work to ensure everyone has all the materials they need, and ends up in the right place, by 9:00 am on Saturday.

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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