Writers Center

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Scholarship Opportunities

The Writers Center provides multiple scholarship opportunities for students. For more information contact the Writers Center Director.

  1. The Palmer Arts Contest awards first ($900.00), second ($400.00), and third ($200.00) prizes in four categories: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, and Visual Art. To be eligible for the contest, entrants must have been registered in Spring or Fall classes in the academic year of the contest. Winners will additionally be published in Spire, ECC's literary and arts journal. Funding for the contest is generously provided by the Florence B. Palmer Foundation - apply now.
  2. The Board of Trustee awards up to (3) three tuition scholarships for creative writing students. Students who receive the scholarship commit to working in the Writers Center. For more information contact the Writers Center Director.

The ECC Writers Center is an outreach program for students and members of the community who are interested in writing and literature. The Writers Center promotes and coordinates a variety of activities for area writers in all stages of development who wish to share their work in an atmosphere of constructive, respectful criticism.

Reading Series

During the academic year, the Reading Series highlights the work of critically acclaimed authors and offers the opportunity for attendees to interact with these writers. In addition to reading events, authors visit the English 110 Creative Writing class and work with individual students on their craft. A pre-reading dinner is held before each event. For reservations contact the Writers Center.

Sam Weller

Thursday, February 15, 7:30 p.m.

Weller is the two-time Bram Stoker Award-winning, authorized biographer of legendary writer Ray Bradbury and an associate professor in the Department of Creative Writing at Columbia College Chicago. He is also a former Midwest correspondent for Publishers Weekly magazine. His books include “The Bradbury Chronicles: The Life of Ray Bradbury” (William Morrow), winner of the 2005 Society of Midland Authors Award for Best Biography, and “Listen to the Echoes: The Ray Bradbury Interviews”. Weller’s personal essays have appeared in the Paris ReviewSlate magazine, and on the National Public Radio program All Things Considered. His forthcoming collection, “The Shadows Behind the Trees”, will be published in 2019 and he is currently at work on his debut novel. 

Nafissa Thompson-Spires

Thursday, March 15, 7:30 p.m.

Thompson-Spires earned a Ph.D in English from ­­­­Vanderbilt University and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from ­­­­­­the University of Illinois. Her work has appeared and is forthcoming in many publications, including The White ReviewLos Angeles Review of Books QuarterlyStoryQuarterly, Lunch Ticket and The Feminist Wire. She is a participant of the 2016 Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop and 2017 Tin House Workshop, and a 2017 Sewanee Writers' Conference Stanley Elkin Scholar. Thompson-Spires' latest short story collection “Heads of the Colored People” was released in April 2017 with Simon and Schuster's Atria/37 Ink imprint, and later in the UK from Penguin Random House's Chatto & Windus imprint. Her debut novel is under contract with the same publishers. 

Tim Seibles

Thursday, April 19, 7:30 p.m.

Seibles is the poet laureate of Virginia. His poetry collections include “Hurdy-Gurdy”, “Hammerlock” and “Buffalo Head Solos”. His first book, “Body Moves” (1988) was recently re-released by Carnegie Mellon University Press as part of the Contemporary Classics series. His awards include the Pen Oakland Josephine Miles Award for poetry and the Theodore Roethke Memorial Poetry Award for his book “Fast Animal”. In 2015, he chaired a panel of judges to decide the National Book Award in poetry.

Seibles’ recently released collection is titled “One Turn Around the Sun”. He is featured in anthologies including “Rainbow Darkness”, “Uncommon Core”, “Autumn House Contemporary American Poetry” and “Black Nature”. He has been a workshop leader for Cave Canem and the Hurston/Wright Foundation—both organizations dedicated to developing black writers. Seibles is a professor of English at Old Dominion University. He teaches literature as well as classes in the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program.

Coffee House

This is a monthly opportunity for writers to share their original work. All ECC students, faculty, and community members are welcome. Join us to share your work and receive feedback from others and/or be an audience member enjoying the works of others. Coffee House events are held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Building B, Room B270.

Upcoming dates include the following Wednesdays:

  • September 5, 2018
  • October 3, 2018
  • November 7, 2018
  • February 6, 2019
  • March 6, 2019
  • April 3, 2019

Spire Magazine

Spire is the college's visual arts and literary magazine published each spring by ECC students. Submissions of original student works are sought in poetry, prose, drawing, printmaking, and photography. Apply now by completing the online form.