Time for some good readings: Literary Festival is back

2015 Spring Literary Festival volunteers
Photo from Literary Festival Facebook page

The 15th annual spring Literary Festival is set to start on Monday, April 3, and will feature short story writers, poets, novelists and even a photographer.

The Literary Festival is a four-day event that is hosted by WCU’s English department, celebrating literature, writing, art and storytelling.

This year, a total of 13 artists from all over the country will be present, such as novelist and short story writer Michael Knight, poet Billy Collins and WCU’s own Paul Worley, as well as student and alumni writers. Pamela Duncan, associate professor of English at WCU and the director of the Literary Festival, has also branched out further, getting photographer Roger May to the festival.

Some of the writers selected for the festival each year are chosen based on their accomplishments and their quality of writing, while others are suggested by people in the community.

“Part of choosing the writers is me thinking of people I think the students would like, but usually it’s a combination of writers that are suggested to me by people in the English department, like Ron Rash and Jeremy Jones, and then people that I hear about from our community,” explained Duncan.

The festival has a long tradition of bringing established and emerging talent to the WCU campus. The 2015 festival featured Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Tracy K. Smith and New York Times best-selling novelist Andre Dubus III, as well as WCU alumnus and novelist David Joy. The 2016 festival featured renowned writer Lee Smith and WCU’s own Ron Rash.

All events are free and open to the public. Authors will do book signings following their presentations, and books will be available for sale. All events will take place in the University Center theater, except for one by Billy Collins at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 6, which will be in the recital hall of the Coulter building.

For more information on the Literary Festival and a full schedule and list of the presenters, go to the festival’s website.

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