Stories build community. Be a part of the story.

2024 Festival Dates

September 5-7, 2024

2024 Festival Theme

joining voices


Our literary festival recently hosted an art contest centered around our theme "JOINING VOICES," inviting artists to explore the harmony found in the convergence of diverse perspectives. After careful deliberation, we are thrilled to announce the winner. Robyn Johnson-McCann’s creation encapsulates the essence of this theme with unparalleled beauty. Their artwork illustrates the symphony of voices coming together, each distinct yet seamlessly blending into a unified chorus.

Robyn Johnson-McCann grew up in Celo, NC surrounded by the arts. Their grandfather was a passionate painter and always encouraged them to keep making art, even as a young kid. They attended Arthur Morgan School where they embraced their love for painting and drawing, and kept creating throughout high school. Now a freshman at University of North Carolina Asheville, they continue their journey of self expression with an open mind as to what they want to study and life ahead.

Who we are

Carolina Mountains Literary Festival is a nonprofit organization striving to foster community by supporting and celebrating literacy and the love of literature in the Southern Appalachians.

What we do

The Festival

For 16 years, we have brought the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival to downtown Burnsville, NC. The festival brings writers and readers together, and readers and readers together.

Engaging Youth

Through our activities and school programs, we promote literacy and the love of literature in classrooms.

Advocating for Literacy

We aim to support and represent the literary arts in Western North Carolina.

What people say about us

"After experiencing the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival in Burnsville, I was hooked. I had never experienced a literary festival like it, where the entire town opens its doors and participates and welcomes everyone. I think I’ve only missed one or two since."

- Kevin Morgan Watson,

founder of Press 53

"The night of my speech, I told the audience that the festival seemed organic. It felt like it grew out of the ground, with its roots attached. But it didn’t grow out of the ground. Its intimate, multi-faceted effect was the work of some dedicated organizers and an entire community that loves and supports literature and art and local history."

- Gail Godwin,

NYT bestselling author & CMLF Keynote Speaker 2018

"We have supported all aspects of the Lit Fest since its inception and we have particularly enjoyed sponsoring the Keynote Speaker several times... Through its Keynote Speaker series, the Lit Fest is making a long lasting impact here. We are happy to be a part of this effort."

- Bubba & Susan Crutchfield

Festival Planners

Dr. Dan Barron


Amber Westall Briggs

Vice Chair

Sondra Ickes


Lucy Doll


Jada Cash

Hospitality Coordinator

Joy Hollingsworth

Author Liaison

Mary Fernandez

Board Member

Erica Griffith Edwards

Board Member

Kathy Weisfield

Selection Committee Chair

Wayne Edwards

Volunteer Coordinator

Caroline Christopoulos

Selection Committee

Maureen Thornton

Selection Committee

Kelly Denton-Blanks

PR Coordinator

2023 Festival Highlights

We Need Your Support

Deposit Money Icon

With an account, PayPal is a great way to donate for a fast payment with low fees.

Writing a Check Book

Send us a Check

Carolina Mountains Literary Festival

PO Box 355

Burnsville, NC 28714

Credit Card Icon

Using, we are now able to accept donations by credit card!

Call for Volunteers

Volunteers are integral to the life of the LitFest. Here are the positions we have available. Join us.


Be the face of the LitFest. Greeters help visitors to the LitFest get to where they want to go. Hand out maps, give recommendations, and get to know the festival goers.

Session Coordinator

You’ll get to meet your favorite authors, introduce them, enjoy the session and help the author to end their session on time.

Are you a

Friend of the Lit Fest?

Setting Level Friendship - $50

  • "Be a Part of the Story" Book Bag
  • 5% Discount at Plott Hound Books
  • Advance notification for events
  • Early registration for workshops

& ticketed events

Theme Level Friendship - $100

  • "Be a Part of the Story" Book Bag
  • Stainless Steel Water Bottle
  • 10% Discount at Plott Hound Books
  • Advance notification for events
  • Early registration for workshops

& ticketed events

Become a Friend

Please support our generous

Sustaining Sponsors

Contact us

Carolina Mountains Literary Festival

For General Information

To Volunteer

For Authors Interested

Registration Questions

Social Media Like Icon
Instagram Icon