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Registration is now open for the North Carolina Writers’ Network’s 2009 Squire Summer Writing Residency.

This year’s Summer Residency will be held Friday–Sunday, July 24–26, at Warren Wilson College outside Asheville, NC.

The Squire Summer Writing Residency is open only to the first fifty registrants, who can choose one of the following workshops: Poetry with Cathy Smith Bowers, Fiction with Tommy Hays, or Creative Nonfiction with Catherine Reid.

Cathy Smith Bowers’s work has appeared in publications such as the Atlantic Monthly, the Gettysburg Review, the Georgia Review, Poetry, the Southern Review, and the Kenyon Review. She served for many years as poet-in-residence at Queens University of Charlotte, where she received the 2002 J. B. Fuqua Distinguished Educator Award. She now teaches in the Queens low-residency MFA in Creative Writing Program, and at conferences throughout the United States.

Bowers is the author of three collections of poetry: The Love That Ended Yesterday in Texas, Texas Tech University Press, 1992; Traveling in Time of Danger, Iris Press, 1999; and A Book of Minutes, Iris Press, 2004. A fourth collection, The Candle I Hold Up to See You,is forthcoming from Iris Press.

Tommy Hays's latest novel, The Pleasure Was Mine, was chosen for the One City, One Book program in Greensboro and for the Amazing Read—Greenville, SC’s, first community read. Read on NPR’s “Radio Reader,” it was a finalist for the SIBA 2006 Fiction Award. His other novels are Sam’s Crossing and In the Family Way, winner of the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award. He is executive director of the Great Smokies Writing Program and lecturer in the Master of Liberal Arts Program at UNC-Asheville.

Catherine Reid is an award-winning essayist and author of Coyote: Seeking the Hunter in Our Midst (Houghton Mifflin), one of Bookloft’s “top twenty bestsellers for 2006.” Other work has appeared in such journals as Massachusetts Review, Green Mountains Review, Bellevue Literary Review, and Isotope: A Journal of Literary Nature and Science Writing, where she was the featured writer for their inaugural issue. She teaches at Warren Wilson College, where she specializes in creative nonfiction.

The NCWN’s Squire Summer Writing Residency offers an intensive course in a chosen genre, as well as a panel discussion on publishing and bookselling, and readings by faculty and registrants. Attendees take meals together on campus, and are encouraged—but not required—to stay in Warren Wilson campus housing that will be set aside for this conference.

“The form of the Summer Residency provides a heightened sense of collegiality, a sense that you’re not alone,” said NCWN Executive Director Ed Southern.

The Squire Summer Writing Residency is named in honor of the late Chick and Elizabeth Daniels Squire, whose support made the residency possible.

More information about the Squire Summer Writing Residency can be found at www.ncwriters.org, or by calling 336-293-8844.

Albert Howard Carter IIIThe distinguished editor and publisher Shannon Ravenel has selected Chapel Hill resident Howard Carter’s story, “Mr. Mason’s Request,” as the winner of the 2009 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize from the N.C. Writers Network.  Ravenel  picked “Dickhead” by Anne Barnhill of Garner as the first runner up, and “Shack on Fire” by Bill Morris of Durham as the second runner up. The winner will receive a prize of $1,000 from the Network, and all three stories will be considered for publication by The Thomas Wolfe Review.

Ravenel selected the winners from a group of nine finalists sent to her by preliminary judge, David Radavich of Eastern Illinois University. The other six finalists were Samantha Talley of San Antonio, TX, for “The Mermaids Singing”; C. Stuart Wright of Ruffin, NC, for “Murdering Edna”; Ann McMurray Simpson of Knoxville, TN, for “Robert’s Shadow”; Julia Davis of Durham, NC, for “Revive Us Again”; Kurt Corriher of China Grove, NC, for “The Caretaker”; and Robert McCall of Saluda, NC, for “Ash Wednesday.”

Ravenel, the editor of The Best American Short Stories series for 13 years and the founding editor, with Louis Rubin, of Algonquin Press, praised Carter’s story: “Based on a brilliant premise, this story is perfectly executed to make the most of that premise and convincingly characterize the three players.” Carter, having retired from Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, FL, is now adjunct professor of Social Medicine, College of Medicine, UNC-Chapel Hill, and, part-time, a massage therapist specializing in cancer patients. He has written articles, poems, stories and full-length books about ways in which literature and the humanities can help medical patients. He has an A.B. in Humanities from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in Comp. Lit from the University of Iowa, with supporting courses in the Writers’ Workshop.

Anne Barnhill, the first runner-up for “Dickhead,” is the author of a memoir, At Home in the Land of Oz: Autism, My Sister and Me.  Her short story collection, What You Long For, is forthcoming from Main Street Rag Publishing Co. in May of this year. She holds an M.F.A. in creating writing from UNC-Wilmington. Ravenel calls her story “a daring first person narrative that overcomes what could have turned raunchy or crude. Originality and finesse work beautifully here.”

Bill Morris, the second-runner up for “Shack on Fire,” writes a story, says Ravenel, “about place and its hold on human beings” in which “setting is the protagonist, and the author manages the twist nicely.”  He divides his time between Durham and the soundside village of Straits in “Down East” Carteret County. The Core Sound area is the setting for his first novel, Saltwater Cowboys, as well as for his story, “Dinah’s Dog,” the winner of the 2003 Doris Betts Prize for short fiction.

 

Greensboro, NC – More than one hundred writers from across North Carolina (and beyond) came together at the North Carolina Writers’ Network’s annual Spring Conference last Saturday.

Held once again at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, the 2009 Spring Conference featured ten workshops in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, playwriting, and public speaking, as well as readings by instructors and attendees, a panel discussion with magazine and small press publishers, and a keynote address by bestselling novelist Sharyn McCrumb.

“I was well fed,” one metaphorically inclined attendee said. “I’m grateful that I was given the opportunity to partake of this banquet.”

The 2009 Spring Conference offered attendees a chance to study fiction with Quinn Dalton, Valerie Nieman, and Jack Riggs; nonfiction with Marianne Gingher, Ed Southern, and Lee Zacharias; poetry with David Roderick and Carolyn Beard Whitlow; playwriting with Alan Cook; and public speaking with Carol Roan.

Attendees also had the chance to get to know these authors and their fellow registrants better at “Lunch with an Author,” in which small groups signed up to take a faculty member to lunch.

“I loved (my) session,” an attendee said. “I learned how to better get inside a character’s head, what questions to ask them, and what drives them.”

Another attendee described the conference as “time well spent. This was my first conference of this type. I will attend more!”

 
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