Tuesday 19 July 2016

PENfro Open Poetry Competition 2016 #seanocarolan.com

PENfro Book Festival Poetry Competition 2016

WE are delighted to announce that our Poetry judge this year is Jonathan Edwards – Costa award winner and Wales Book of the Year People’s Choice winner. He will read all the entries.

Jonathan said: “It’s a great honour to be judging the PENfro Poetry Competition. It's a wonderful festival, which is very close to my heart, and it's a great pleasure to be involved in this way.”

Jonathan’s taste in poems is broad-ranging: “I look for work which is accessible, entertaining, which makes me smile or laugh, but which also packs a real emotional punch and is memorable. I love form too, though that’s not the same thing as saying you need to include a villanelle to win.”

He adds: “When the world tragically lost the great American poet James Tate in 2015, the Poetry Society published a tribute to him, which included this quote from the great American: ‘I love my funny poems, but I’d rather break your heart. And if I can do both in the same poem, that’s the best. If you laughed earlier in the poem, and I bring you close to tears in the end, that’s the best. That’s most rewarding for you and for me too. I want ultimately to be serious, but I can’t help the comic part. It just comes automatically. And if I can do both, that’s what I’m after.’

Said Jonathan: “That sums it up really. Impress me, move me, make me laugh or cry, make me remember your poems. Good luck and happy writing!”
Guest Judge: Jonathan Edwards

Prizes: 1st - £300; 2nd - £125; 3rd-£75. Entry fee: £4 per poem.

Closing date: Sunday, July 31st, 2016.

Maximum length: 40 lines. Subject: open

Winners announced: Friday, September 9th, 2016.

Writers of the top ten shortlisted poems will be invited to read their entries at a Spoken Word event at the Festival that evening, when Jonathan will be guest reader and will present the prizes.

The competition is open to anyone aged 16 or over. Poems should be in English, they must not have been previously published, nor be currently submitted for publication or competition elsewhere.
Poems must be the original work of the entrant, they must be typed single spaced on A4 paper and be no longer than 40 lines. See RULES for full details

The easiest way to enter is online via our website.

Submit your payment via PayPal. If you do not have a PayPal account, don’t worry, you will be invited to set one up or you can just pay by debit or credit card.

How to Submit

Follow the instructions to upload your work online, one poem per document in Word or PDF format.


Pay by Paypal or credit card for online entries. Please ensure you have read the competition rules before you submit your poem/s

Each poem must be on a separate sheet of paper, which must bear the title of the poem, but must NOT show the name of the entrant or any other form of identification. All entries will be judged anonymously.

Two copies of each poem entered should be submitted, on separate sheets.

Entries must be accompanied by a completed application form and appropriate payment. All winners will be notified by email.

Entries must be accompanied by the entry fee: £4 for each poem entered. Cheques (sterling only) should be made payable to PENfro Book Festival.

Postal entries should be addressed to PENfro Poetry Competition, Croeswen Isaf, Betws Ifan, Newcastle Emlyn, SA38 9QL. We regret that we are unable to return poems or enter into any correspondence with entrants. Please keep a copy of your work.

Submissions that do not meet the Rules of Entry will be disqualified. Please make sure you:
• put the title of the poem/s you enter on the entry form
• send two copies of each poem, on separate sheets
• do not put your name or any identifying information on your poems – your name and address should only appear on the entry form

Details of the winners will be announced at PENfro Book Festival on Friday, September 9th, and will be published on the PENfro website.

Copyright remains with the authors, but PENfro Book Festival reserves the right to print winning poems on its website.
The judge’s decision is final.

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