The 36th Newcastle Poetry Prize has opened for entries.

Hunter Writers Centre invites any Australian poet (living here or overseas) to submit a poem up to 200 lines. The competition will close on 30 June 2017.

The Newcastle Poetry Prize is one of the most prestigious in the country with a total prize pool over $22,000. First prize is $15,000 – for one poem.  Second prize is $5000, third prize is $1000. There are also awards given to a poet who resides in the Hunter Region (the Local Award), and The Harri Jones Memorial Prize award ($250) for the best poem by a poet under the age of 35.

History here: http://www.hunterwriterscentre.org/history-of-theprize.html

The Newcastle Poetry Prize is unique among Australian poetry prizes for producing an accompanying anthology that provides a rare opportunity for poets to be published outside of the literary journals and internet magazines.

The Newcastle Poetry Prize has been coordinated by the Hunter Writers Centre since 2002 and is proudly sponsored by the University of Newcastle, which provides the prize money.

Past winners have included John Watson, Brook Emery, Dorothy Hewett, Anthony Lawrence, David Musgrave, Patricia Sykes and Mark Tredinnick.

The 2017 competition will be judged by Professor Kevin Brophy and Eileen Chong. Kevin Brophy is the author of fifteen books of poetry, fiction, and essays.  His latest books are Misericordia (2016) and This is What Gives Us Time (2016).  Eileen Chong’s books are Burning Rice (2012), Peony (2014) and Painting Red Orchids (2016). Her work has been shortlisted for the Anne Elder Award, the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards, the Peter Porter Poetry Prize, the Newcastle Poetry Prize, and most recently, for the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards.

Full entry details can be found on HWC’s website: http://www.hunterwriterscentre.org/newcastle-poetry-prize.html

The Hunter Writers Centre was established in 1995 and is a leading writers centre in Australia now offering three major contests with more than $35,000 in prize monies. It administers the prestigious Newcastle Poetry Prize, the Newcastle Short Story Award and the Grieve Writing Competition. The centre also provides access to professional development through workshops, writing groups and seminars.

The University of Newcastle was established in 1965 and is internationally recognised in research, teaching and learning, environmental sustainability, and equity and diversity.

Newcastle Writers Festival

PicMonkey NWF banna.jpg

The weekend just passed was the fourth annual Newcastle Writers Festival at which I volunteered all day Saturday and Sunday. It was a tiring, yet extremely rewarding experience. I met some really lovely people and even got to listen in on some really brilliant sessions.

The highlight for me was seeing all the festival goers friendly smiling faces AND!!!! a YA@NWF16 session on Sunday afternoon at the Newcastle Playhouse. The State of Play for YA in which industry insiders Jennifer Dougherty (Allen & Unwin), Stephanie Speight (Text Publishing) and Zoe Walton (Penguin Random House) discussed with Host Gerry Bobsien (Author, Surf Ache) the ins and outs of what is happening in Aussie YA at the moment. The ladies bounced off each other beautifully. It was a fun, fast pace, informative and fantastic session. I’ve purchased a ticket to the TeenCon Panel at the Sydney Writers Festival on the 22nd May – so it’ll be interesting to see how they compare.

Every session I stuck my head in at NWF16 seemed fantastic and there were some really inspirational authors on show. From what I heard from other volunteers and festival goers this was the norm among all the festival sessions – enjoyable, entertaining and informative. Happy little Novocastrians all round.

Looking forward to next year! which I am sure will keep up this years growth and be bigger and better again.

Newcastle Writers Festival Links: WebsiteFacebookTwitterInstagram

Sydney Writers Festival Links: WebsiteTwitter