Skip to header Skip to Content Skip to Footer

Distinguished Professor, Noted Author Clyde Edgerton Honored for Life’s Work

UNCW Thomas S. Kenan III Distinguished Professor of Creative Writing Clyde Edgerton
UNCW Thomas S. Kenan III Distinguished Professor of Creative Writing Clyde Edgerton
Courtesy: Clyde Edgerton

North Carolina Humanities is honoring hall of fame writer, educator, artist, musician and pilot Clyde Edgerton for his life’s work. Since 1990, the John Tyler Caldwell Award for the Humanities has recognized individuals for strengthening the educational, cultural and civic life of North Carolinians. Edgerton is set to formally receive the 2023 award on Oct. 20 at the Grand Bohemian Hotel Charlotte. 

Reynolds Price, Louis D. Rubin, Jr., William C. Friday and Hugh Morton are past honorees.  

“Clyde has been a central fixture in the North Carolina literary scene for decades. This is yet another well-deserved honor recognizing his many contributions throughout a storied career. We are fortunate and immensely proud to have him on our faculty,” said Mark Cox, UNCW Department of Creative Writing professor and chair. 

A native of Durham and graduate of the University of North Carolina, Edgerton has taught at UNCW since 1998. He received the Kenan Distinguished Professorship in Creative Writing in 2013 for international prominence in his field. 

The author of 10 novels and two nonfiction books, five of his novels are New York Times Notable Books. Three of his books have been made into motion pictures. Raney, Walking Across Egypt, The Floatplane Notebooks, Killer Diller, Where Trouble Sleeps, Lunch at the Piccadilly and The Bible Salesman were adapted for stage.
His short stories and essays have been published in Best American Short Stories, New York Times Magazine, Southern Review and Oxford American, among others. 

A past Guggenheim Fellow, he was inducted into the NC Literary Hall of Fame in 2016. Other honors include the Thomas Wolfe Prize, the North Carolina Award for Literature and the University of North Carolina Education Department Distinguished Alumni Award.  

An avid musician who plays the keyboard, banjo, mandolin and guitar, he was the featured artist for the 2015 North Carolina Azalea Festival. He makes frequent public appearances at bookstores, art shows, music festivals and theaters. 

Fellow creative writing professor David Gessner says of his colleague of 20 years, "Clyde is that rare thing: a great artist, a great man and a great teacher, too. He is a model for passionately pursuing one's work and excelling at the art of living, always keeping an open mind and an open heart. His is a gracious excellence."