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Welcome to Raleigh Review!

Mark Smith-Soto Kicks Off Southern Recitations

Are you registered for the workshop? Got the reading on your calendar? What? No? ACT NOW!

You won't want to miss Mark Smith-Soto's 2-day poetry workshop, Employing the Senses: Bringing Emotions to Life in Poetry, September 27 & 28. Early-bird registration ends Friday, September 12. That's the scholarship application deadline, too. Need more details? Start here.

And be sure to join Mark Smith-Soto and Terry Kennedy for their poetry reading Saturday evening, September 27. It's sure to be a treat--and a FREE treat, at that. Learn more here!

Getting to know Mark Smith-Soto: An excerpt from a recent interview

You spent much of your childhood in Costa Rica. How does this affect your writing? Do you see yourself as a particular type of writer (American, Hispanic, Hispanic-American, Costa Rican, Costa Rican-American)? What defines a label?

Some have said that our childhood years fuel our creativity for the rest of our lives, and in that sense my growing up in Costa Rica, surrounded by its abundant natural beauty and nurtured by a complex and loving extended family, will always be a generative force in all I write. This is so even when the apparent subject matter, as is most often the case in my work, makes no specific reference to that early experience. As far as labels are concerned, I suppose they are inevitable. I don't think anyone likes being pigeonholed, being reduced willy-nilly to a category. Still, as someone who was raised bilingually, speaking Spanish with my mother and English with my father, and whose cultural identity was profoundly impacted by my Costa Rican heritage, I have come to accept and even to embrace the term "Latino." That it might be applied to writers as dissimilar as William Carlos Williams, Gary Soto, and Gloria Anzaldúa does rather limit the label's usefulness, however.  

Upcoming Events

Southern Recitations

Sep 27-28, 2104
Mark Smith-Soto poetry workshop
Early-bird registration ends Sep 5!
410 N. Boylan Ave., Raleigh

Sep 27, 2014, 7pm
Mark Smith-Soto & Terry Kennedy poetry reading
FREE and open to the public
NCSU Club, 4200 Hillsborough St.

Oct 18-19, 2014
Randall Kenan fiction workshop
Early-bird registration ends Sep 27!
410 N. Boylan Ave., Raleigh

Oct 18, 2014, 7pm
Randall Kenan reading
FREE and open to the public
NCSU Club, 4200 Hillsborough St.

Nov 8-9, 2014
Zelda Lockhart multi-genre (poetry, fiction, memoir) workshop

Early-bird registration ends Oct 18!
410 N. Boylan Ave., Raleigh

Nov 8, 2014, 7pm
Zelda Lockhart & Angela Belcher Epps reading
FREE and open to the public
NCSU Club, 4200 Hillsborough St.

Southern Recitations has many sponsors, including Caktus Group.

Thanks, Caktus Group!

For more supporters, see the Southern Recitations page.

Announcing an All-Star Lineup

Award-winning authors to visit Raleigh Review for Southern Recitations

Raleigh Review's new workshop and reading series, Southern Recitations, brings award-winning authors to read and teach in Raleigh, NC.

Mark Smith-Soto - Smith-Soto's poetry often explores his Latino heritage and the memories of his boyhood living with his mother's extended family in Costa Rica. He is the author of the poetry collections Our Lives Are Rivers and Any Second Now.

Randall Kenan - Raised in a rural NC community, Kenan now writes fiction and nonfiction while teaching at UNC Chapel Hill. Among his books is the collection of short stories Let the Dead Bury Their Dead, which was a NY Times Notable Book.

Zelda Lockhart - Director of LaVenson Press Studios and award-winning author of the novel Fifth Born, Lockhart is a past Piedmont Laureate for Literature. She now lives on 3.5 acres in rural NC.  

Malena Mörling - The author of Ocean Avenue, Mörling has translated works by the Swedish poet Tomas Tranströmer and numerous other Swedish poets into English, as well as works of American poet Philip Levine into Swedish. 

Marjorie Hudson
- From Chatham County, NC, Hudson writes about loss, conflict, and a yearning for community deeply threaded through American history and contemporary life. She is the author of Accidental Birds of the Carolinas.

Joseph Bathanti - The 2012-14 NC Poet Laureate, Bathanti teaches creative writing at Appalachian State University and has taught writing in prisons since 1976. His books include Restoring Sacred Art and Land of Amnesia. 

Catch up on Past Issues of Raleigh Review

Need a beach read? We've got just the thing! Raleigh Review Volume 1 and Volume 2, which are no longer in print, are now available for your Kindle or Kindle app. And priced at under $5, they're a summertime steal! Enjoy!

Empower a Writer: Matching Funds Help Raleigh Review Open a New Chapter!

UPDATE: You exceeded our wildest dreams. Between our two Power2Give scholarship projects, we raised $3000! Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. We couldn't have done it without your donations and support.

The Power2Give folks work behind the scenes making sure the platform functions as intended and information is communicated clearly to the nonprofit organizations sponsoring projects. Thanks to them for doing a fabulous job!

And a special thanks to the North Carolina Arts Council for the matching funds provided throughout both projects. It is a wonderful feeling to have that sort of visible, tangible support for the arts.

Watch this space for details on Southern Recitations--coming soon!


Wow. We are humbled and amazed. We asked for your help raising $1700 for scholarships, and you met that goal in 3 days!

Some of you didn't even know about the scholarship project before it was fully funded. Know what? There are still matching funds left.

Raleigh Review invites you to empower a writer by sponsoring a scholarship seat for a 2-day Southern Recitations writing workshop. For a limited time, through the Power2Give platform for every dollar you donate, the NC Arts Council will match it with another 50 cents.

Southern Recitations
We are opening a new chapter for Raleigh Review with Southern Recitations, our workshop and reading series taking place Fall 2014 through Spring 2015. Six award-winning writers will teach weekend workshops in poetry, fiction or creative non-fiction, and will perform readings the corresponding Saturday evening. Each 2-day workshop is limited to 15 participants, allowing students to receive hands-on guidance from the instructor. Readings are free and open to the public.

We also want to open a new chapter for writers who might not otherwise be able to attend Southern Recitations workshops. Our Power2Give "stretch" goal is to raise another $1300 to sponsor scholarship seats (on top of the $1700 already raised!). For every $250 donated, one scholarship recipient will work with an award-winning poet or writer. If we meet our $1300 stretch goal (about 4.5 scholarships), we will make sure to find enough funding for round that up to 6 scholarships, bringing our total to 12 for the Southern Recitations workshop series.

Please help us empower emerging writers by opening a chapter of possibility for them! For more information and to make a contribution, visit Power2Give now!

Raleigh Review Places in Top International Award
2014 Summit Creative Award

Out of more than 5,000 submissions from 24 countries Raleigh Review is named a Bronze winner in the 2014 Summit Creative Award® competition for its editorial/publishing work on Raleigh Review Volume 4 (Winter/Spring 2014).

“We are very grateful to the Summit Creative Award judges and the Summit Creative Award staff for this international honor for our Winter/Spring 2014 issue,” said Rob Greene, Raleigh Review editor and publisher. “This award honors those who had a hand in this issue, from our editorial team members to our writers, poets and artists, and those who fund us—our subscribers and the entities who have awarded us grants.”

Entries in 20 major categories are judged against a stringent set of standards. During its blind judging the Board of Judges search for and identify innovative and creative concepts, strong executions and the ability to communicate and persuade. Winners were selected in a wide range of categories from print and broadcast to emerging and social media.

“Winning a Summit Creative Award is a significant accomplishment in one’s career. With vetted judges, tough judging criteria, blind judging processes, and strict bylaws limiting winners, only deserving entries receive recognition,” said Jocelyn Luciano, Executive Director for the Summit International Awards (SIA). “The creative work this year was outstanding. Watching the judges debate the details of individual entries in the run-off for the tops spots was inspiring.” 

Welcome our new staff!


Raleigh Review is delighted to be bringing five new very talented editorial staff members on board.

  • Heather Bell Adams (Fiction) is an attorney and accomplished writer.
  • Chloe Campbell (Poetry) recently completed her MFA at UNC-G and was on the staff of The Greensboro Review.
  • Bryce Emley (Poetry) is a freelance writer/editor who will be starting the MFA program at NCSU this Fall.
  • Tayler Heuston (Fiction) is a current MFA student at NCSU and has been editor of Spectrum Literary Magazine.
  • Landon Houle (Fiction) has an MA in creative writing/English and a PhD in English, and was editor of Iron Horse Literary Review.

Brief bullets can't do the new folks justice. They have many other qualifications--teaching, publishing, and you wouldn't believe the number of awards.


We wouldn't manage without our behind-the-scenes staff. Qianxiang Tang recently joined us as a bookkeeping intern. Qianxiang is an accounting student at NC State University. She will be assisting Treasurer Susan Shah.

It's great to have everyone joining us (here's the full staff list). Welcome!

Hot off the press!

NewPages Review: Challenging & Entertaining

It's always instructive to read reviews and see if the reviewers accurately perceive the intent of the editors in the choices they make. NewPages has a review by Mitchell Jarosz of Raleigh Review Volume 4 (Winter/Spring 2014) that hones in on our editors' intent of choosing entertaining yet challenging work. Read the review here, then order your copy here!

RR moves to biannual publication

We're proud to announce we will be publishing RR twice a year! You can anticipate the Fall 2014 issue in only a few short months. Are you a writer? Submit your poems and stories for our Fall issue by clicking here. Are you a reader? Don't forget to subscribe!