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About WCU's Spring Literary Festival

Western Carolina University's annual Spring Literary Festival has a long tradition of bringing established and emerging literary talent to our campus and region. It reflects WCU's commitment to providing the best humanities education possible to its students and to bringing the best of the arts to the mountains.

The festival grew out of Western Carolina University's Visiting Writers Series, the oldest such series in North Carolina. While the area has a rich literary heritage all its own, the festival seeks to secure that heritage's place on the nation's literary stage by bringing local and national writers together.

Cristina Henriquez speaks to students during the 2019 festival

Over the years, the series has hosted such distinguished local writers as Fred Chappell, Lee Smith, Ron Rash, Kathryn Stripling Byer, and Robert Morgan. As well as well-known American writers Li-Young Lee, Marilynne Robinson, Linda Hogan, Billy Collins, Leslie Marmon Silko, Ntozake Shange, Tracy K. Smith, Karen Shepard, Luis Rodriguez, Maxine Kumin, Sherman Alexie, and Clifton Taulbert. We've also had the honor to host internationally renowned authors like Eavan Boland, Mirosalv Holub, and Welsh poets Menna Elfyn, Iwan Llwydd, and Nigel Jenkins.

Most literary festival events take place in the A. K. Hinds University Center on the campus of Western Carolina University in the scenic mountains of Cullowhee, NC. Some special events may take place in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center.

Volunteer Literary Festival Ambassadors 

LitFest Grad Student Ambassadors


Would you like to lend a hand during the Spring Literary Festival? We're always looking for students to help represent, promote and facilitate the Literary Festival.

Whether you're recruiting other volunteers, spreading the word across campus, working a table in the UC, help deliver and mail posters and brochures as well as deliver books by LitFest authors to local libraries. During the Literary Festival, you may assist guest artists with book-signings, distribute and collect evaluations and help facilitate the overall execution of the LitFest.

For more information, please contact Jeremy Jones, festival director.

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