By Ed Southern
The North Carolina Writersâ€™ Network is open to all writers, at all levels of skill and experience, working in all genres, with all manner of goals and aspirations.
We say it, and we mean it.
Because we mean what we say, we want to explain why we ask registrants for certain programs to submit manuscript samples with their registrations, and why we say those programsâ€”namely, the Squire Summer Writing Residency, and the Master Classes at the Spring and Fall Conferencesâ€”are open only to â€œqualified registrants.â€
When we ask for manuscript samples, we donâ€™t care how good or bad the writing is. Thatâ€™s not for us to judge.
We donâ€™t care how long or short your list of publications is. Weâ€™re not looking forâ€”weâ€™re not here forâ€”only writers with an arbitrary amount of experience.
Weâ€™re looking for evidence of dedicationâ€”dedication to the craft, to improving your craft, to approaching the craft of writing in a serious way.
We want to get the feeling that youâ€™re ready to handle the intensive instruction youâ€™ll receive at the Residency or in one of our Master Classes, whether youâ€™re a beginner or a published author.
So if youâ€™re wondering about applying to this yearâ€™s Residency at East Carolina University, donâ€™t worry that you might not be â€œgood enough.â€
However good you are, or are not, the Residency will help you get betterâ€”but only if youâ€™re ready and willing to dedicate yourself.