JC’s Guest Post for Mike Stewart, the OPL’s first Writer-in-residence

When Mike asked JC to write a guest post about poetry for his blog in December, she was delighted.

The piece appeared this week at: https://biblioottawalibrary.ca/en/blogs/guest-post-jc-sulzenko-hits-hints-post-about-poetry.

What way did she choose to give tips about how poetry works? She used song titles of the top singles from the week of November 27-December 3. What tips about writing poetry can song titles offer? “It always surprises me that poetry isn’t considered ‘mainstream,’ when songs are poems with music,” JC laments. “Just listen to Adele’s “Hello” as an example. There’s a hit song, made memorable not only for its compelling melody, but for its words which remind me of a ballad.”

“It’s great that I had the chance to write a post for teens and ‘tweens’ now, because the Ottawa Public Library’s 21st Awesome Authors Contest just opened on December 1.” The deadline for submitting short stories and poems in English or French for young writers aged 9-17 is February 15, 2016. Winning entries will be announced in the spring and be published by the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library next fall.

“I sure hope students across our city will swamp the judges with fine poems and stories.” JC returns to judge English poetry entries. Governor General Award winner Caroline Pignat will choose winning stories from 13-17 year-old writers, while Catherine Austen will judge stories by 9-12 year-olds. Sylvie Frigon has poems and stories in French as her focus. Entrants must have a valid OPL card.

The OPL is hosting workshops to give young writers a chance to hear from the judges and ask them questions. JC’s poetry workshop for 9-12 year olds takes place at 10:30 AM on a PD day, January 22, 2016, at Beaverbrook Branch. For information on the other workshops, go to the Awesome Authors Contest page on OPL website: https://biblioottawalibrary.ca/en/about/awesome-authors.

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