SOUTHERN PINES—The North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame will postpone its induction ceremony scheduled for this fall to Sunday, October 17, 2021, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We have no way of knowing what phase of lockdown the state will be in come this October, and we’d rather go ahead and postpone the ceremony now than have to cancel it at the last minute,” said Ed Southern, the executive director of the North Carolina Writers’ Network, which oversees the NCLHOF.
The five Tarheel authors selected for the NCLHOF this year—Anthony S. Abbott, Charles Frazier, Bland Simpson, Max Steele, and Carole Boston Weatherford—will join the other inductees in the Hall this fall. Their profiles will appear on www.nclhof.org, and their portraits will be hung as soon as possible in the Weymouth Center in Southern Pines, which houses the NCLHOF.
“Though the induction ceremony traditionally takes place outside, we could not keep a safe social distance between the attendees without severely restricting their number,” Southern said. “We decided to wait and hope to hold a full ceremony next year, rather than hold a half-ceremony this year.”
Since 2008, a collection of North Carolina literary organizations has helped the NCWN coordinate the NCLHOF and its activities: the North Carolina Center for the Book, now a part of the North Carolina Humanities Council; the North Carolina Collection at the Wilson Library of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill; and the Weymouth Center for Arts & Humanities.
“Every other year, the NCLHOF induction is a family reunion for North Carolina’s writers and readers,” Southern said. “We’ll miss it this year, but next year the reunion will be especially joyful.”