North Carolina Literary Review

Edited by Margaret D. Bauer, East Carolina University


Frequency: Annually (June)

Latest Issue: 2021, vol. 30

Size: 7.75 x 10"

Bibliographic Information: ISSN: 1063-0724


The North Carolina Literary Review (NCLR) publishes poetry, fiction, and nonfiction by North Carolina writers, as well as interviews, articles, and essays about the state’s authors, literary history, and writing culture. A cross between a scholarly journal and a literary magazine, NCLR 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.

The NCLR is produced at East Carolina University. Started in 1991, it was inspired by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association to be a companion to the North Carolina Historical Review, with a mission to promote and support writers who are a part of the state’s rich literary tradition. NCLR not only introduces new and emerging writers, but also celebrates forgotten authors who have influenced the culture and history of the Old North State.

The print issue is published in the summer. It is available via subscription and in independent bookstores across the state. Since 2012, a separate, open access digital issue (NCLR Online) is published in the winter. The creative writing in both issues is complemented with fine art by North Carolina artists.

Editor since 1997, Margaret D. Bauer is the Rives Chair of Southern Literature and Distinguished Professor of Arts and Sciences at East Carolina University in Greenville, where she received the university’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Research and Creative Activity in 2014. She is the author of The Fiction of Ellen Gilchrist (1999), William Faulkner’s Legacy (2005), Understanding Tim Gautreaux (2010), and A Study of Scarletts: Scarlett O’Hara and Her Literary Daughters (2014), as well as numerous articles in scholarly journals. She has also edited two Paul Green books: James Spence’s Green biography and a new critical edition of Green’s play The House of Connelly.

The NCLR has been adopted as an official publication of the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association. Members receive a subscription to the journal as a benefit of membership. For more information, visit our membership page.

Subscription Rates

Individual price – $18 1-year, $30 2-years
Institutional price – $27 1-year, $50 2-years

We have a partnership with Duke University Press (DUP) for print subscriptions. Agencies are eligible for a discount on the institutional rate. If you have questions about an existing subscription please contact DUP Journals Services:


Margaret D. Bauer

Art Director
Dana Ezzell Lovelace

Poetry Editor
Jeffrey Franklin

Fiction Editor
Liza Wieland

Art Editor
Diane Rodman

Graphic Designers
Karen Baltimore
Stephanie Whitlock Dicken

Senior Associate Editor
Christy Alexander Hallberg

Assistant Editors
Anne Mallory
Randall Martoccia
Helen Stead

Senior Editorial Assistant
Max Kilgore

2020-2021 Editorial Assistants
Drake Heath
Bethany Holmes
Nija Knight
Mary Myers

2020-2021 Interns
Elizabeth Currin
Lily Johnson
Vedika Modi

Founding Editor
Alex Albright

Original Art Director
Eva Roberts

Table of Contents

Number 30, 2021

Writing toward Healing

Writing the Darkness Away
by Margaret D. Bauer, Editor

The Art of Healing: An Interview with Lee Smith
by George Hovis

Kaleidoscopic Swirls of Lee Smith
by Sharon E. Colley
art by Catherine Edgerton

The Hope of “dark-night songs”: Music and Healing in Charles Frazier’s Nightwoods
by Paula Rawlins
photography by Susanna Euston

Teaching the Darkness Away: Humanities, History, and Education
by Christie Hinson Norris

Being Here in This Body
the 2020 Linda Flowers Award
essay by Mildred Kiconco Barya

The Culprit: Reflections on the Bleeding Edge
an essay by Daniel James Waters
art by Nancy Marshburn

Finding the Heart of Medicine: Intersections of Healthcare and Writing
by Laura Hope-Gill
art by Justus Harris


An Ethic of Everyday Nature in John Ehle’s The Road John Ehle Prize essay
by Savannah Paige Murray

She, Being Holy Ghost
a poem by David E. Poston
art by Teri Leigh Teed

“Wearing Pants”: Reclaiming Masculinity in Charles Frazier’s Cold Mountain and Ron Rash’s Serena
by John Hanley
photography by Bayard Wootten

kwansaba crown
a poem by Gideon Young
art by Dare Coulter

Making Sense of “Cornsilk”: Identifying Intertexts in Randall Kenan’s Short Story
by Timothy K. Nixon
art by Barbara Ellis

At the Grey Dog in Chelsea
a poem by Jodi Barnes
art by Chris Watts

“It’s based on nothing but fear, by a compulsion to catastrophize”:
A Conversation with Nathan Ballingrud
Randall Kenan Prize interview by Jim Coby

The Newsy
a poem by J.S. Absher
photography by Vivian Maier


Many Identities, One Voice: An Interview with Cherokee Novelist Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle
by Kirstin L. Squint

Little Things
the 2020 Doris Betts Fiction Prize story
by Molly Sentell Haile
art by Diana Bloomfield

the 2020 James Applewhite Poetry Prize poem
by Keely Hendricks
art by Amy Herman

Trouble in the Heartland
the 2020 Alex Albright Creative Nonfiction Prize
essay by Andrew D. Scrimgeour
art by Ben Long

After Perfecting a Coconut Cream Pie, I Fail
a poem by Terri Greco
art by Andi Steele

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$250 (full-page); $150 (half-page); $100 (quarter-page)

Email NCLR to reserve ad space for the print issue by March 1; ad copy due by April 1. For the online issue, reserve ad space by October 15; ad copy due by November 15.

Tell us what books you will advertise so that we may place your ad appropriately in the issue.


10% discount on all pre-paid ads; 10% discount if reserved before February (the earlier the better for best placement of ad). Only one discount period.
For accounts billed, full amount due within 30 days of publication. We anticipated publication of each issue in July. First-time advertisers may be asked to pay in advance.

Publication details:

Size: 7 3/4” x 10”, 200+pp., heavily illustrated with black and white photographs, maps, drawings, and other contemporary and archival material. Printed on acid-free, archival stock paper.

Anticipated 1st printing:

1000-1500 copies
Current subscriptions: 500+
Retail sales: locations throughout NC, from Ocracoke to Sylva
Excess print run is distributed to magazines, book review editors, publishers, agents, writers, and academics across the US.


UNC Press Journals Contacts


To order back issues of Numbers 1-26 please visit the NCLR store at East Carolina University.