White Cross School Blog


NC Literary Hall of Fame




GREENSBORO—On-site registration for the North Carolina Writers' Network 2019 Spring Conference opens at 8:00 am on Saturday, April 27, in the lobby of the MHRA Building on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Upon arrival, there will be free biscuits from Biscuitville, coffee, and an open exhibit hall packed with publishers, literary journals, and organizations from around North Carolina.

On-site registrants will be able to chose from among those classes that are still open, including:

  • Real Characters: Capturing People in Nonfiction Prose with Eddie Huffman
  • Metaphor & Memory in Poetry with Ashley Lumpkin
  • Writing Speculative Fiction with Krystal A. Smith
  • The Wonder of Falling (poetry) with Charlotte Matthews
  • The Basics of the Book Business, Part II with Jamie Rogers Southern

Essayist and poet Michael McFee, a recipient of the North Carolina Award for Literature, the state's highest civilian award, will give the Keynote Address.

Faculty readings, open mics, and the annual Slush Pile Live! program, all take place in the afternoon.

Those interested in reading in one of the two open mic rooms can sign-up at registration beginning at 8:00 am.

The annual Slush Pile Live! will offer both poetry and prose in two rooms so that more attendees have a chance to receive feedback on their writing.

Beginning at 4:00 pm, attendees may drop off either 300 words of prose or one page of poetry in the room of their choice (prose and poetry will be read in both MHRA rooms 1214 and 1215). The author’s name should not appear on the manuscript.

Then, at 5:00 pm, a panel of editors will listen to the submissions being read out loud and raise their hand when they hear something that would make them stop reading if the piece were being submitted to their publication. The editors will discuss what they did and did not like about the sample, offering constructive feedback on the manuscript itself and the submission process. All anonymous—all live! (Authors can reveal themselves at the end, but only if they want to.)

Those interested in having their anonymous submission read should bring a hard copy of up to 300 words of prose from a single work or one page of poetry (40-line max) to one of the Slush Pile Live! rooms. Submissions should be double-spaced, 12-point, Times New Roman font. No names should appear on the submissions.

For more details about the NCWN 2019 Spring Conference, click here.

The NCWN 2019 Spring Conference is sponsored by the MFA Program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro; Biscuitville; and the North Carolina Arts Council.


GREENSBORO—Alan Michael Parker of Davidson has won the 2019 Randall Jarrell Poetry Competition for his poem “Psalm.” Parker will receive $200 and publication in storySouth.

Final judge Jim Whiteside said of Parker’s poem, “In a world increasingly marked by chaos and unpredictability, a poem determined to seek peace is its own kind of haven. 'Psalm' posits a series of conditional statements that unfold beautifully—and those statements are as obsessed with the beauty of language as they are their genuine pursuit of quiet among the noise. What the poet leaves us with in the poem's conclusion is an image of the body that's entirely pure and striking; every time I've read this poem it has sent absolute shivers through me. It's a delightful poem on the level of language and on a human level—the marker of a truly good piece of writing.”

Parker is the author of nine collections of poetry including The Age of Discovery (forthcoming from Tupelo Books), and four novels. The Douglas C. Houchens Professor of English at Davidson College, he also teaches in the University of Tampa’s low-residency M.F.A. program. He lives in Davidson with his wife, the artist Felicia van Bork.

Whiteside named “My Father’s House Had Wheels” by Annie Woodford as Runner-Up.

Woodford’s first book of poetry, Bootleg, was published by Groundhog Poetry Press this year. Her poetry has appeared in Blackbird, The Southern Review, The Rumpus, The Sewanee Review, Rattle, and Prairie Schooner. A winner of the Graybeal-Gowen Prize for Virginia Poets, she has also been awarded scholarships from the Appalachian Writers’ Workshop and the Bread Loaf and Sewanee writers’ conferences. A native of Bassett, Virginia—a mill town near the North Carolina border—she now teaches at Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro.

Whiteside also selected three poems for Honorable Mention: “But First, We Must Eat the Skies” by Michael Boccardo; “Atlanta Braves” by Sandra Ann Winters; and “On Finding Monarch Caterpillars in September” by Kathryn Kirkpatrick.

The Randall Jarrell Poetry Competition accepts one-poem submissions and honors poet poet and critic Randall Jarrell, who taught at what is now the University of North Carolina at Greensboro for nearly eighteen years. He was a 1996 inductee of the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame who left behind nine books of poetry, four books of literary criticism, four children’s books, five anthologies, a bestselling academic novel, a translation of Goethe’s Faust, Part I, and a translation of Chekhov’s The Three Sisters, produced on Broadway by The Actors’ Studio.

The competition is administered by Terry L. Kennedy, Director of the MFA in Creative Writing Program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

StorySouth is an online literary journal dedicated to showcasing the best poetry (and fiction and creative nonfiction) that writers from the "new south" have to offer. Facilitated by the Graduate Program in Creative Writing at UNCG, storySouth aims to prove that "the internet is not just a medium of flash and style; that excellent writing can attract attention without programming gimmicks and hard-to-read fonts." storySouth believes the American South today is a "mix of traditional and new, regional and international."

Final judge Jim Whiteside’s debut chapbook, Writing Your Name on the Glass, is forthcoming from Bull City Press this year. His poems have received support from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where he earned his MFA. Jim’s recent poems have appeared or will soon appear in journals such as Ploughshares, The Southern Review, Pleiades, Crazyhorse, and Washington Square Review. Originally from Cookeville, Tennessee, he has recently relocated to Madison, Wisconsin.

The non-profit North Carolina Writers’ Network is the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to all writers at all stages of development. For additional information, visit www.ncwriters.org.


GREENVILLE—Katey Schultz of Celo is the winner of the 2019 Doris Betts Fiction Prize for her story “Something Coming.” She will receive a prize of $250 from the North Carolina Writers’ Network, and her story will be published in the North Carolina Literary Review’s 2020 issue.

Ben Fountain, author of the short-story collection Brief Encounters with Che Guevara and the novel Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, selected Schultz’s story, stating, “The experience depicted in 'Something Coming'—that of a young girl's coming of age—rings true at every level. The uncertainty, the excitement, the very real dangers, it's all here, rendered in vivid, nuanced prose that does justice to the complexity and wonder of these several days in twelve-year-old Lauren's life. The voice never falters, nor does the writer's sure handling of exposition and scene. The temporal shift at the story's conclusion is the kind of daring leap that's the mark of a first-rate writer, and serves to, if I might borrow a metaphor from one of this fine story's narrative lines, 'stick the landing.' 'Something Coming' pleased this reader very much.”

Katey Schultz is the author of the short story collection Flashes of War (reviewed in NCLR Online 2014) and the forthcoming novel Still Come Home (Loyola University Maryland). “Something Coming” is part of a short-story collection in progress. She is the founder of Maximum Impact, a mentorship service that provides transformative online curricula for serious writers. Schultz also received the Linda Flowers Literary Award in 2009, and she has received writing fellowships in eight different states.

The annual Doris Betts Fiction Prize honors the late novelist and short story writer Doris Betts and is sponsored by the nonprofit North Carolina Writers’ Network, the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to writers at all stages of development. For additional information, visit www.ncwriters.org.

Produced since 1992 at East Carolina University, the North Carolina Literary Review has won numerous awards and citations, including five from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals: the Best New Journal award in 1994, the Best Journal Design award in 1999 and 2010, the Parnassus Award for Significant Editorial Achievement in 2007, and the Phoenix Award for Significant Editorial Achievement in 2014.

A two-year subscription to NCLR will include the 2020 issue, featuring Schultz’s prize story and an interview with Ben Fountain. Go to http://www.nclr.ecu.edu/subscriptions for subscription instructions.


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