Network member Brent Martin was selected as the winner of the 2022 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award by the Western North Carolina Association for his nonfiction book George Masa’s Wild Vision: A Japanese Immigrant Imagines Western North Carolina (Hub City Press, 2022).
In a press release from UNC Asheville, of Martin’s work, literary award committee chair Catherine Frank said, “In George Masa’s Wild Vision: A Japanese Immigrant Imagines Western North Carolina Brent Martin brings together Masa’s arresting images and his own reflections on walking in Masa’s footsteps to tell one of our region’s important stories in an innovative way. Masa played a pivotal role in the creation of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park and the Appalachian Trail through photographs that allowed viewers to experience places they would never visit. Martin creates a portrait of a man and a region we now know a little better.”
This year’s Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award also recognizes Network member Heather Newton as a finalist for her novel McMullen Circle (Regal House Publishing, 2022).
Last year’s winner of the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award was Network board member Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle for her novel, Even As We Breathe (University Press of Kentucky, 2020). Clapsaddle was sworn in as the next board president of the North Carolina Writers’ Network on December 9, 2022 by unanimous vote. She will serve following Michele T. Berger who has accepted a position at Case Western Reserve University in Ohio as their new Director of the Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities. Berger will still remain an active trustee of the board.
We send our congratulations to both Clapsaddle and Berger on their accomplishments as well as to Martin and Newton for their work being honored by the Western North Carolina Historical Association.
On December 13, an award ceremony will celebrate Brent Martin and all five finalists for 2022. The event will also be live-streamed via Zoom for those who cannot attend in person. Registration is available for this free event at: www.wnchistory.org.