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The 2016 Piedmont Laureate

Katy Munger
Katy Munger

Durham mystery writer Katy Munger has been named the 2016 Piedmont Laureate.

The Piedmont Laureate program is dedicated to building a literary bridge for residents to come together and celebrate the art of writing. Co-sponsored by the City of Raleigh Arts Commission, Durham Arts Council, Orange County Arts Commission, and United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, the Piedmont Laureate program’s mission is to “promote awareness and heighten appreciation for excellence in the literary arts throughout the Piedmont region.”

During 2016, Katy will appear at workshops, reading programs, and speaking engagements throughout Wake, Durham, and Orange counties.

“I cannot speak to the self-esteem of all of NC’s writers, but I can say that I am lucky to have been raised here,” Katy says in her inaugural Piedmont Laureate blog post, “which is why I think it’s only fitting I spend the next year passing on the love for writing I learned growing up in Raleigh.”

Katy has written fifteen mystery novels since 1990 using several different pseudonyms. She is the author of the Dead Detective series, writing as Katy Munger and as Chaz McGee; the Casey Jones crime fiction series writing as Katy Munger; and the Hubbert & Lil mystery series, writing as Gallagher Gray. The Casey Jones series is a humorous, semi-hardboiled series set in the Triangle area featuring a female unlicensed private investigator and numerous recurring sidekicks.

Katy earned a BA with Honors in Creative Writing from The University of Chapel Hill. She is also a former book reviewer for The Washington Post, and for decades was a book editor and columnist for Raleigh’s The News & Observer. In addition to her work as an author of mystery novels, she is the Director of External Relations and Communications for the Duke University Talent Identification Program (Duke TIP) for academically gifted students in grades 4-12.

The Piedmont Laureate Program focuses on a different literary form each year, including poetry, novels, creative nonfiction, drama/screenwriting, children’s literature, short fiction, speculative fiction, and mystery fiction.  Past laureates have included Carrie Knowles (2014), Zelda Lockhart (2010), and NC Literary Hall of Fame inductee Jaki Shelton Green (2009).

For more information about the Piedmont Laureate program, visit