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About the Festival


Our mission is to bring together, in small, intimate settings, authors, readers of all ages, novice writers, listeners, and learners. We are a festival of readers who appreciate discussing the ideas in literature.

We do not see ourselves as an academic festival, though we seek to advance authors of literary quality.  Nor are we a book fair in which the primary objective is to sell books.

One of our goals is to raise awareness of works of literary significance from smaller presses.  We do focus on regional writers, though not exclusively.  But overall, our aspiration is to create a little literary community which is in dialog with readers, aspiring writers, and established authors about craft and ideas of sustaining merit.

Another goal is to make sure our authors are having good time.  In the best scenario, authors leave the festival feeling renewed and rededicated to their work.  So frequently when an author writes in isolation, it is hard to believe that his/her work is making an impact on people and society.  But situating authors and readers together in close quarters, as our festival does, it is possible for authors to hear stories of how their work has influenced people.  It’s not just signing a book, it’s making a human connection.

We hope the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival inspires people to read more, write more, and contribute positively to society through the literary arts.

Our Pecularities


No outside vendors have booths at our festival.  In fact, we don’t even sell any litfest paraphernalia. In an attempt to support our quaint downtown, attendees are encouraged to buy souvenirs at the many local shops that host readings. Authors are not tied down to a table all day, but are free to roam the town, attend other sessions, or gab with other authors in more sequestered areas.  Some authors spend a full two days attending others’ readings.  As festival planners, we thoroughly enjoy this contribution.  However, some chose to leave after their sessions, which is equally acceptable.
Our events are spread all over our small town— in galleries, small stores, the Town Center, library, nearby churches, and other various venues.  Only a few used primarily for workshops are not within walking distance.
Events are scheduled simultaneously.  As many as five different events may be occurring at any one time.  (We know that it can be difficult to choose, but we make every attempt to have each author present at least twice during the weekend.) We have a festival bookseller (Malaprop’s) who sells all festival author books – authors do not sell their books on their own.  (Therefore, if book sales are high on your list of priorities or you enjoy pitching your books, you may not find this event to your liking—and vice versa.)
Authors gather for morning and afternoon-session book-signings as a group.  No individual authors will have their own signings. Author presentations are limited to two consecutive years.  Exceptions may be made if an author has a new, significant work.  At the same time, we welcome past participants as attendees, or to assist us as session moderators or introducers if they wish.

Click here if you are an author who would like to participate.