'North Carolina Literary Review' Focuses on ECU
By Jeannine Manning Hutson
East Carolina University, celebrating its centennial, is the focus of the 2007 “North Carolina Literary Review.”
The literary journal housed in ECU’s English Department just published its 16th issue.
“In celebration of ECU’s 100th anniversary and as a way of saying thank you for ECU’s support of the ‘North Carolina Literary Review,’ the special feature section of the 2007 issue is ‘Commemorating 100 Years of Writers and Writing at ECU,’” said “NCLR” editor Margaret Bauer, the Rives chair of Southern literature at ECU.
|The 2007 issue of “NCLR” focuses on ECU. (Contributed photo)
The special feature section includes selections by current and emeriti creative writing faculty and graduates of the creative writing program, she said. The entire issue features the artwork and photography by ECU School of Art faculty, alumni and graduate students.
The edition also includes Allan Gurganus’ keynote address for the first literary festival event that became the annual Eastern North Carolina Literary Homecoming; Robert Morgan’s commencement address from his tenure at ECU as the Whichard chair in the humanities; and an interview with eastern North Carolina playwright/screenwriter Samm-Art Williams, who will be the keynote speaker at this fall’s Literary Homecoming, Bauer noted.
A native of Rocky Mount, Gurganus’ first novel “Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All” spent eight months on the New York Times bestseller list and earned him the Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. The novel has sold more than two million copies worldwide and was a clue on “Jeopardy” (“Names” for four hundred). Gurganus’ essay is entitled “Now that Feds Are Paying Us Not to Grow Our Best-known Carcinogen, What or What Shall We Eastern North Carolinians Export?” He is working on the second novel in “The Falls Trilogy” which began with “Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All,” according to his website. The title is “The Erotic History of a Southern Baptist Church.”
Other articles in “NCLR” include an essay on the writings of and an original essay by Ovid Williams Pierce, the first writer-in-residence at ECU; searching for Hannah Crafts, perhaps the first African-American female novelist; an interview with “NCLR’s” poetry editor Jeffrey Franklin; and the essay, “My Father’s Library” by David S. Cecelski.
Fictional works include the short stories, “Lost Colony” by Constance Pierce, “Spawning Season” by Erica Plouffe Lazure, “Marianne Moore’s Tricorn Hat” by Luke Whisnant, and “Night Light” by Rhonda Strickland, which won the 2006 Doris Betts Fiction Prize from the North Carolina Writers Network; “Lot’s Wife Speaks,” a novel excerpt by Alex Albright; “Driving Miss Molly Home” by James Dodson; and poems by several authors, including Peter Makuck and Patrick Bizzaro. Also included is “Katmandu,” a one-act play by Robert Siegel.
The 2008 theme for “NCLR” will be North Carolina humor. “NCLR” will be available at Dowdy Student Stores, R.A. Fountain in Fountain, and Sunflower Books in Washington; at www.ecu.edu/nclr/ and at the Fourth Eastern North Carolina Literary Homecoming Sept. 28-29.