Jersey’s poets are once again being invited to compete for cash prizes and the opportunity to see their work published.
The overall winner of the second Jersey Festival of Words Poetry Competition will also be awarded the Alan Jones Prize, named in memory of the inspirational teacher who made a unique contribution to Jersey-based writing.
Winning poems will be published as part of a special newspaper supplement also featuring the best short stories from this year’s Jersey Evening Post Writing competition, sponsored by Rathbones. Both the poetry and prose winners will receive their prizes at ceremonies during the Jersey Festival of Words, taking place from 25 to 29 September.
The poetry competition is divided into three age categories. The winner of the Alan Jones Prize will receive £300, with £100 going to the second-placed adult entrant and £50 to the third-placed. In the 14-17 age group the prizes are £100, £50 and £25 and in the 9-13 category £50, £25 and £10.
The deadline for entries is 31 July and detailed information about competition rules and how to enter can be found on the festival website and in flyers to be distributed to arts and culture venues and schools.
The judges are former States cultural development officer and Jersey Arts Centre director Rod McLoughlin; award-winning poet and Jersey Festival of Words committee member Jacqueline Mézec; and festival co-founder Chris Bright, former editor of the JEP.
The competition is being administered by Sheila Jones, widow of Alan Jones (1940-2013) who was both a literature teacher who guided generations of students and aspiring writers and a poet who drew inspiration from both his native Jersey and his worldwide travels. An anthology of his poems, Ninety Mile Beach, was published to coincide with the first Jersey Festival of Words in 2015.
The first Jersey Festival of Words Poetry Competition attracted almost 200 entries last year and was won by Simon Crowcroft, the Constable of St Helier.
Details of the packed and varied programme for this year’s festival will be announced soon. Once again, Jersey’s own five-day celebration of the power and pleasure of words in all their forms will bring internationally renowned authors to island venues as well as creating new platforms for Jersey’s own writers.
More information: www.jerseyfestivalofwords.org