Center for the Book

Group of adults in discussion

Center for the Book

Fostering interest in books, reading, libraries, the literary heritage of North Carolina and promoting the public library's role as a community cultural center.


Let's Talk About It

Let's Talk About It

The Let's Talk About It programs are book, film, and poetry discussion programs led by humanities scholars and professors at public libraries. These programs target out-of-school adults and help the library fulfill its role as a community cultural center.

Discussion Series Topics

Offering a Program

What libraries need

Where to get it

books, videos, dvds & support materials

borrow at no charge from the North Carolina Center for the Book

humanities scholars/professors to lead programs and facilitate discussion

speakers scheduled by the NC Humanities Council

funding (most of the direct cost provides an honorarium for the speaker)

sources include North Carolina Humanities Council mini-grants, state and local partner organizations, and Friends of the Library groups

Program Timelines

  • Summer Cycle 2017: Applications are by due by March 3, 2017. Summer series must occur between May 28-August 5 2017.
  • Fall Cycle 2017: Deadline is May 29, 2017. Fall series take place from August 27-November 18, 2017.
  • Winter-Spring Cycle 2018: Deadline is September 25, 2017. Winter-Spring series should occur January 7-April 28, 2018.

How to Apply for a Let’s Talk About It Grant:

  1. Please review the Project Director's Guide
  2. The Council has a new online application system! Please watch this video tutorial on how to apply using our online application system or download these instructions
  3. Complete the online application and submit it by the cycle deadline listed above.

Need More Information?

Caitlin Patton
Program Coordinator
North Carolina Humanities Council
320 E 9th Street, Suite 414
Charlotte, NC  28202
(704) 687-1520 (Main)
(704) 687-1521 (Direct)

Book Loaner Program

Book Loaner Program

Transylvania County Library loans book sets to NC libraries for use in reading and discussion programs available to the public.  For more information, contact the library by email or phone 828-884-3151, ext. 246.   

Letters About Literature

Letters About Literature

Letters About Literature is a national reading and writing competition that invites students in grades 4 through 12 to write letters to authors whose work has made a significant difference in their lives. Readers write a personal letter to an author, living or dead, from any genre -- fiction or non-fiction, contemporary or classic, poetry or short story -- explaining how that author's work changed the student's way of thinking about the world or themselves. In 2015-16 there were three competition levels in each state: Level 1 for grades 4-6; Level 2 for grades 7-8; and Level 3 for grades 9-12. Prizes are awarded to winners at each level. All State Winners' letters advance to the national round for judging and awards.

The program is sponsored nationally by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. The North Carolina Center for the Book administers the North Carolina state program. To find out more about the program and how your school or individual student can participate, please visit the Letters About Literature site for complete contest rules and teacher resources, including lesson plans and entry forms.

2017 NC Winners

Level 1 Ella Gray Blair Sharon Elementary, Charlotte Read Ella's Letter
Level 2 Sage Rowe Hendersonville Middle School Read Sage's Letter
Level 3 Benjamin Warlick C.D. Owen High School, Black Mountain Read Benjamin's Letter

Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poet Series

Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poet Series

The Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poet Series supports the mission of the North Carolina Poetry Society to foster the reading, writing, and enjoyment of poetry across the state.  Every year, three Distinguished Poets from the east, central, and west of North Carolina each mentor a middle-school, a high-school, a college or university student, and an adult within their respective regions. The Series offers a way for poets to give back to the North Carolina poetry community.  Past Gilbert-Chappell Distinguished Poets include Ann Deagon, Joseph Bathanti, John Hoppenthaler, Becky Gould Gibson, Lavonne Adams, Catherine Carter, among others.

North Carolina Literary Map

The mission of the North Carolina Literary Map is to highlight the literary heritage of the state by connecting the lives and creative work of authors to real (and imaginary) geographic locations. Through the development of a searchable and browseable data-driven online map, users are able to access a database, learning tools, and cultural resources, to deepen their understanding of specific authors as well as the cultural space that shaped these literary works.

North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame

The North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame celebrates and promotes the state’s rich literary heritage by commemorating its leading authors and encouraging the continued flourishing of great literature. It is more than a museum housing photographs and archives. Working closely with libraries and schools, the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame honors North Carolina writers through programs, services, and opportunities for children and adults.

About the Center for the Book

The North Carolina Center for the book is an affiliate of the Library of Congress Center for the Book program. The Center, established by public law in 1977, is incorporated into several private-public partnerships designed to implement programs, awards and prizes in order to nurture and expand a culture of literacy and reading. Since its founding, the Library of Congress Center for the Book has established affiliate centers in the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Center's mission is also carried out internationally through its overseas affiliates. Additionally, more than 80 organizations have been designated Center for the Book reading promotion partners both in the United States and abroad.

For more information about the NC Center for the book contact: