Nominations being accepted for 2018 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award

Press release from Western North Carolina Historical Association:

The Western North Carolina Historical Association is now accepting nominations for the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award. Originated by the Louis Lipinsky family and now also supported by Michael Sartisky, PhD, the Award has been presented by the WNC Historical Association since 1955. The Award is now a partnership between WNCHA and the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Advisory Board. The award comes with a $1,500 cash prize.

The deadline for submission of nominated works is July 1, 2018. Anyone with knowledge of an author who meets the qualification criteria may nominate the author for the award. To be considered, an entry must be a published work of fiction, nonfiction, drama or poetry and meet the following criteria:

  • It must be a first edition work; revised editions of published works will not be considered for the Award.
  • The publication date must be in the calendar year 2017 or no later than July 1, 2018.
  • The author must be a native of the western North Carolina region or a resident of western North Carolina for at least twelve months prior to the closing date for the Award.
  • An author may also qualify if the work submitted has a focus on or setting in western North Carolina.

Western North Carolina includes the Qualla Boundary and the following 25 counties: Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Caldwell, Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Surry, Swain, Transylvania, Watauga, Wilkes, Yadkin, and Yancey.

The Award Panel this year consists of: Terry Roberts, PhD, Chair, winner of the 2016 Wolfe Award, Jim Stokely, former Chair of the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Advisory Committee; Gwin Jones, Past Chair WNCHA; Tom Muir, Director, Thomas Wolfe Memorial; Ellen Carr, Treasurer, Thomas Wolfe Memorial Advisory Committee; Mimi Fenton, PhD, Immediate Past Dean of the Graduate School, WCU; Gordon McKinney, PhD, former president, Appalachian Studies Association; Brandon Johnson, Mars Hill University.

Nomination letters must specify the following eligibility criteria:

  • date of publication
  • birthplace or residence of author
  • setting of work

Nominators must submit:

  • A cover letter detailing above qualification criteria
  • Three copies of the work

The nomination letter along with the three book copies must delivered to or (if mailed to WNCHA) post marked no later than July 1, 2018. Nomination will not be accepted after the July 1 deadline. Mail nomination to:

Wolfe Award Committee
C/O Tim Tipton
WNC Historical Association
283 Victoria Road
Asheville, NC 28801

An awards ceremony and reception, in honor of the 2018 Award recipient, will be held on Saturday, November 17, 2018 at the Renaissance Asheville Hotel in the “Top of the Plaza” room. The ceremony and the reception are generously sponsored by the Renaissance Asheville Hotel.

The Association presented the first Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award to Wilma Dykeman in 1955 for The French Broad. The Award has continued to be funded, in part, by Mrs. E. Frank Edwin, a member of the Lipinsky family and for the last four years by WNCHA, and the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Advisory Board, both with support from Michael Sartisky, PhD. Other recipients of this prestigious Award include Robert Morgan, John Paris, Gail Godwin, John Ehle, Charles Frazier, Robert Brunk, Michael McFee, Lee Smith, Ron Rash, Wayne Caldwell and Terry Roberts.

Julia Frank was the recipient of the 2017 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award to for her book: Over The Plain Houses.

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