CHAPBOOK CONTEST.

Chapbook Poster

Whitworth University is holding a writing contest in which students will submit 10-20 pages of original writing in any genre, or combination of genres. These writers will have the opportunity to compete with other Whitworth students, and submissions will be read by our award-winning guest judge, Amy Leach!

Amy Leach is the Author of Things That Are, and as her work has appeared in Best American Essays, Best American Science and Nature WritingA Public Space, Orion, and The Gettysburg Review, among other journals. Leach holds an MFA in creative nonfiction from the University of Iowa and has been recognized with the Whiting Writers’ Award and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Award.

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Submission Guidelines:

Students should submit 10-20 pages of original writing in any genre (or a combination of genres). These entries do not need to be formatted like a chapbook and there are no restrictions on subject matter. Students may enter more than one manuscript if they wish.

Each student entry should include a cover page with their name, manuscript title, phone number, email, and major. The student’s name should not appear anywhere on the manuscript.

The deadline to enter work is 5pm Friday, December 1 at 5pm and entries must be turned into the English front desk.

The first place winner will receive $100, a small print run of their book, and a spot as the featured reader at the annual “Script” reading. The runner up will win $50.

Congratulations Poetry Contest Winners!

Congratulations to to the winners of this year’s poetry contest, ‘Elegy for Trees’! Meet our winners, read their poems, and get a look into what our guest judge Dr. Megan Hershey had to say about each of the poems.

1st Place: Anneliese Immel

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Bio: Anneliese Immel is a senior at Whitworth University. She will be graduating this year with a double major in Biology and Chemistry. She has also enjoyed taking as many creative writing classes as her schedule would allow!

Fell
 Wild words fall from your mouth into the wind,
incoherent moaning as this forest, this fortress is made
new in the dark of the day, transfigured for
descent into the dust.
 
Sap seethes across each murder hole. Enemies storm
the barky moat and knotted bole,
overcome those organic keepers and press on,
rout and raze the roots
mulching without mercy the monarchies.
 
Pinioned to the earth, the figures pine
in their failed strength and lofty loss.
Not able to withstand an earthbound fate
exudation is their final exaltation,

sealing their sepulcher.

Here’s what our judge, Dr. Megan Hershey had to say:

“Fell” returns the reader to Windstorm 2015 with its first line, observing “wild words fall from your mouth into the wind” and proceeds to quickly draw us into a dark and deadly tale.  The poet thrills and rattles us, juxtaposing the mundane (“sap,” “roots,” and “barky”) with the sinister (“seethes,” “moat,” “raze”), all while pressing us to conside the fallen pines as a metaphor for that which is lofty and strong in our own lives (“Pinioned to the earth, the figures pine – in their failed strength and lofty loss”).  I was left wondering what this poem is really about, which is precisely the point. 

 

Second Place: Nina Westcott

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Bio: Nina is a freshman Biology Major who enjoys embracing the written language. She also loves long walks around the Loop and every form of dance. Loosing the trees felt like loosing a piece of her heart.

An Elegy for Trees

Walking

In

Nothing but

Dull

Sunlight.

The

Offensive

Rays

Mark the ground where the

Pines fell.

In their death, came life for fires.

Nature warring against itself.

Earth conquered by air. Even the crows

Screech

Here’s what our judge, Dr. Megan Hershey had to say:

This sparse poem managed to capture my own feelings about the loss of our Loop canopy in only 39 words.  The poet reminds us what it felt like to walk across campus in late November, calling to mind the “Dull Sunlight” and “Offensive Rays.”  The poem alludes to larger forces and the painful, yet healing process of communal mourning.  Even the formatting recalls the loss – or the recovery?

Congratulations Chapbook Contest Winners!

Congratulations goes out to the three winners of this year’s Chapbook contest! Here’s a look into the winners and excerpts from their winning work.

1st Place: Molly Rupp

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Bio:  Molly Rupp is a senior English major, with an art minor. She has an alarming affinity for parenthetical asides, strongly advocates for the Oxford Comma, and hopes to one day live in a cabin on the Oregon Coast, surrounded by cats. Notable skills include, but are not limited to: binge watching Netflix, quoting Harry Potter in everyday conversation, embracing awkward social situations, and making killer mac and cheese.

Excerpt from Gloria Patri:

“This time I know I was four because that year we borrowed a shaky video camera from a family friend and have hours of footage. There’s me toddling around with confident steps in a Minnie Mouse costume on a windy day, the river and my dad’s office in the background and the voice of my mother competing with the sound of gusts on microphone. The preschool production of The Three Little Pigs and distracted children forgetting lines and missing notes and me in a puffy white hat and prim and proper dress with apron, showing off my new-found skill of eye-rolling. Christmas Eve and the nativity scene and I’m wrapped in cloth that worked as a makeshift dress, stiff and falling into my eyes. The Virgin Mary always seems to be dressed in blue in nativity scenes although I’ve never particularly understood why, so my cloth was blue and my face was red and I clutched the swaddled doll in a death grip and Mrs. Bradford was telling me from the front of the stage that I could put Jesus in the manger now.

We’d practiced for weeks and all I knew was fear because what if I put the doll in at the wrong time and what if I didn’t look peaceful enough and why was she called the Virgin Mary anyways and what if I dropped the baby Jesus, I couldn’t just drop Jesus in front of everybody and now it was Christmas and everyone knows that that’s like, the moment, and my four year old hands are clutching this doll that the day before I’d been playing school with and telling to eat its vegetables, and I know I need to put it in the manger. It’s Jesus now and that’s where the baby Jesus is supposed to go and everyone is waiting.”

 

 

2nd Place” Molly Daniels

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Bio: Molly Daniels is a senior majoring in English and minoring in Philosophy and Music. Her family resides in Missoula, Mt. She often takes part in Whitworth plays, and she enjoys reading, cooking, and swing dancing. After graduation, she plans on pursuing a career in creative writing and book design.

Excerpt:

sun-scorched

he gives chase          scatters leaves underfoot         appetite to taste the earth teeth

breaking olive skin—

she flees, a race to the riverbed cry father-god

his word                dripping finger            dragged from the deep

proclaims her bark               stretched to the sky         winding grooves and paper flesh

she eludes           and yet        he breaks off branches      he leaves her        bleeding sap

crowns himself with              hair and fingernails

 

 

 

3rd Place: Hannah McCollum

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Bio:Hannah McCollum (’18) is currently studying abroad in Guatemala and Nicaragua. She misses Westminster and mashed potatoes ‘n’ gravy. When she returns to Whitworth she will miss the amazing Guatemalan hot chocolate. Her majors are English/Writing and Spanish.

Excerpt from “My Mom’s Hands:”

In dusty cardboard boxes my parents kept our old finger paint masterpieces and drawings on faded construction paper. When my older brother James was in kindergarten he listed facts about Mom for a Mother’s Day gift. Mommy’s favorite thing in the world to do, according to this record, was laundry. That is actually her least favorite chore. I remember her sitting on the carpet in front of the TV with towers of laundry baskets beside her. Pride and Prejudice would be playing, the long one that spread over six VHS tapes, which my mom had seen approximately one hundred times. She didn’t watch movies, she played movies in the background while she sorted and folded warm smelling clothes.

I thought Elizabeth Bennet looked a little like my mom did in my parent’s wedding picture: they both wore simple white dresses and proud gazes. Once I wandered into the master bedroom and found my mom sitting on the bed with the picture out of its frame. I sat next to her and watched her use a brown pencil to bring up the corners of her sepia tone lips, trying to soften her expression from fifteen or twenty years ago. Next to the serious bride stood a version of my dad with longer, fuller hair and bigger glasses. He was smiling widely.

Jane Austen Essay Contest Finalists

635560316483405793-1685870550_JAPG6-jane-austen-penguin-frontCongratulations to Katie Waltar (’16) and Chris Volk (’17) for their honorable mentions in the 2015 Jane Austen Society of North America Essay Contest!

Waltar’s essay is called “Gratitude and Esteem: Integration of Money and Love in Pride and Prejudice” and Volk’s essay is called “Sense and Sensibility and Lady Susan: Austen’s Pragmatic Approach to The Ethics of Deception.”

 

 

WaCLA Essay Winners

Congratulations to English Majors Elizabeth Merriam (’16) in the Junior/Senior category and Josh Tuttle (’17) and Chris Volk (’17) in the Freshman/Sophomore category for their winning essays!

The Washington Consortium for the Liberal Arts (WaCLA) advocates for the importance of a liberal arts education and believes that the voices of those who are benefiting from such an education are profoundly persuasive.

Whitworth students were invited to submit essays based on the prompt “A liberal arts education values ways of knowing that cross the humanities, the arts, and the social, natural, and physical sciences.  This multifaceted approach to knowledge inspires creative responses to important topics and pressing issues, both present and future.  Drawing on your experience with a specific topic or issue that you have explored either inside or outside of school, discuss the importance of the liberal arts as a means of engaging with the present and shaping our individual and collective future.”

The essays were judged in an anonymous format by a cross-disciplinary group of Whitworth faculty. These winning papers will be forwarded to the WaCLA statewide paper competition.

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2015 Poetry Contest Winners Announced

In celebration of Whitworth’s 125th anniversary, students were asked to write a poem of exactly 125 words, including the words “pine,” “cone” and curtain.”

1st Place winner Sandra Tully is from western Washington and is currently a senior at Whitworth. She is an English/writing major and also a Computer Science major.

Guest Judge Arlin Migliazzo had this to say about Tully’s poem, “Perhaps Da Vinci Told Her”: I can envision the master himself nodding appreciatively at the poet’s whimsical but humane explanation for Mona Lisa’s smile that almost isn’t.  The reference to da Vinci’s ingenious flying “contraption,” the artist’s care in his desire to hide the “tea stained tinge on her two front teeth” and her damaged incisor cracked “into a thousand tiny triangles” speak to the centuries that separate us from the painting itself.  Yet the recognition that she might have wanted “to show a subtle streak of rebellion” and his efforts to coax a real smile out of her as well as his compassion in masking her physical limitations speak to our shared humanness across the years.

Mona-Lisa

Perhaps Da Vinci Told Her

 

not to smile, still she turned the corners of her mouth

just enough to show a subtle streak of rebellion.

 

Perhaps he made her laugh,

recounting the time he tested his own contraption;

catapulting into the cold night air,

and waking up shivering and naked in a field

surrounded by cattle beveled, staring,

like the slanting surface of a cone.

 

Perhaps he would have seen it then,

her two lips parting like horizontal curtains

revealing the fall from a pine tree that

fractured her left incisor into a thousand tiny triangles.

 

Perhaps he waited for her amusement to fade,

slowly concealing the tea stained tinge of her

two front teeth until all that was left

was the lingering remnant of delight.

 

10262049_766898803340337_3865761703545282024_n2nd Place winner Leah Dassler is a freshman marketing major with a Chinese minor. She hails from Denver, Colorado, where she enjoys hiking, playing tennis, and going on adventures with her family. At Whitworth, you can usually find her having random dance parties with her friends or exploring Spokane. In her spare time, Dassler loves to read and write poetry because poetry often presents truth in its rawest form.

Guest Judge Arlin Migliazzo had this to say about Dassler’s poem, “Navigating Red and Black”: I am drawn into the mystery of this poem–and its puzzling, even disconcerting message for me.  Since the author clearly cares for the companion(s?), does the incurred expense “in red and black” refer to a connection (or connections) here at Whitworth?  As the debit/credit ledger theme is carried on in other phrases (“numbers corralled between parentheses/To ignite finely-kept balance sheets” and “gypsy tendencies unaccounted for/The ones tensioned between red and black”) is it rather a paean to the necessity of repeated forgiveness in the constant human struggle upward toward authenticity, both for ourselves and for those we most care about?  What is the poem urging me to consider in my quest for self-knowledge as that quest both connects me to others and also creates pain for those closest to me?  That is the disconcerting part. . .

MistyForest3

Navigating Red and Black

 

In red and black I incurred an expense

One unrepayable

 

You hurdling up over stairs the way you do,

Insisting the summit must be just

Past swirl-bound mist

 

Can’t you see as I, from the base, do—

The best climbs lack steps entirely.

 

To make one’s own way

Beyond pines

Toward sunlight patches

 

To uncover souls in places where we thought only fog existed

Along the cone-covered way we wander

 

To disentangle names

from numbers corralled

between parentheses

To ignite all finely-kept balance sheets

 

This is the path we are meant to stumble upwards

Side-by-side navigating the misty curtain split in two,

Top to bottom

 

Seven times forgive

These gypsy tendencies unaccounted for

The ones tensioned between red and black

 

Congratulations winners! Thanks to everyone who submitted, and to our guest judge, Arlin Migliazzo!

Summer 2013A_Migliazzo_5x7 (1)Arlin C. Migliazzo is professor of history at Whitworth University where he has taught since 1983. He received the B.A. from Biola College (1974), his M.A. from Northern Arizona University (1975), and the Ph.D. from Washington State University (1982). His publications include essays and articles on ethnic studies, the Pacific Northwest, colonial South Carolina, church-related higher education, the history of evangelicalism, and comparative democratic development. He has also published some of his poetry in Script, the Whitworth University literary journal.

 

 

2015 Poetry Contest Deadline is Monday, March 2

pine cone

Calling all Whitworth poets!

The deadline for the 2015 poetry contest is Monday, March 2, at 5 p.m. Submit your entries at the EL department front desk. Include your name and contact info on a separate sheet.

This year’s challenge is to write a poem of exactly 125 words. Three of those words must be pine, cone, and curtain.

Dr. Arlin Migliazzo, a professor in Whitworth’s history department, is our guest judge.

 

Congratulations to our 2015 Chapbook Contest Winners!

stull

Congratulations to Dana Stull (’16), the first-prize winner for the 2015 Chapbook contest, and to Annika Bratton (’18) for an Honorable Mention!

Dana (above) describes herself as one who “writes, reads, bakes pies, pickles and preserves, speaks goat, takes names, and is currently developing a stand-up comedy routine.”

Here’s what our guest judge, Daniel Bowman Jr., had to say about Dana’s manuscript, the girl who says nothing:

“I was a bit torn on this decision at first. the girl who says nothing in some ways lacks the range of some other manuscripts—an experimentation with styles, forms, lines and line breaks, and sound necessary as the true voices and chief concerns of young poets begin to emerge.

And yet…the girl who says nothing resounds with a maturity and sense of purpose beyond expectations. It is, quite simply, the one chapbook that haunted me long after I’d read all of them. These terse, focused poems left me no choice but to reckon deeply and personally with this girl who says nothing, and, by extension, with the terrifying distances between how things ought to work and the realities of our world.

The ‘incident reports’ are particularly effective. Told in an alarmingly clinical voice, they remind us how the stories of the most vulnerable are so often mediated—shaped and controlled—by those in power.

In addition, many individual lines reverberate despite the tight spaces of the poems: ‘she is crossing the small bridges/in me.’ Indeed. That image accounts precisely for the way this character, and these poems, get under your skin, how they disturb and finally transcend niceties on the journey toward truth.

The critic R.P. Blackmur wrote of poetry operating at a high level, noting how it ‘not only expresses the matter in hand but adds to the stock of available reality.’ the girl who says nothing has added a rich and subtly textured experience to my own stock of availability reality, and for that I am grateful.”

stull poem

Annika Bratton (’18) describes herself as “a first year student from Banks, Oregon, right between Portland and the coast. I am double majoring in Peace Studies and English and minoring in Environmental Studies. When I’m not studying or writing poetry, I enjoy dancing, hiking, going to the beach, and attempting to solve social justice issues. I am beyond excited to have received such an honor in this competition.”

bratton

On Bratton’s manuscript, Bowman states that “the poems in Becoming radiate with an attractive zeal, physicality, and longing. Though they sometimes risk abstraction, they nonetheless provide a space where joy and pain coexist in a creative tension.

I came to a nearly instant trust in the poet’s voice, which is clear, inventive, vulnerable, by turns earnest and ironic, but never dull or stilted. And the poems are consistently invitational; one becomes less a reader and more a participant: ‘Hold every echo in the cavern of your lungs,’ the poet bids us. The brand of partaking described in Becoming isn’t for the faint of heart—this poet is all in. And so was I.”

Here’s “Jewelry Boxes,” a poem from Becoming:

she wrung the light
out of a bulb
but not before a kiss of shattered glass
and chemicals.
children take longer to die
and less time to be alive
when mousetraps are baited with
hollow models and the expectancy
of manhood.
children
can’t see how many heartbeats
a day makes;
her heart
beat so much faster with
the light stuck in her palms.
she sewed a necklace from her teeth,
presented it to collarbones on one knee.
my heart can’t stop flashing traffic lights
so i had to uncap my brain.
listen.
the rocking chair can’t sway
the weather-vane
enough to birth some lightning,
but it keeps a kite in its lap
just in case.
she melted some crayons
for the waxing moon
and fingerpainted a new skyline
from all the blood in her mouth.
Thanks to Thom Caraway, Annie Stillar, the Whitworth Department of English, to all of this year’s contestants, and to our 2015 guest judge, Daniel Bowman Jr.
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Daniel Bowman Jr. is the author A Plum Tree in Leatherstocking Country (virtual artists collective, 2012) andBeggars in Heaven: A Novel (forthcoming 2015). His work has appeared in The Adirondack ReviewBooks and CultureThe CressetThe Midwest QuarterlyRio Grande ReviewSaint Katherine ReviewSeneca Review, and many other journals. A native of the Mohawk Valley in upstate New York, he lives in Hartford City, Indiana and is Associate Professor of English at Taylor University.
 

2015 Campus-Wide Poetry Contest

To celebrate Whitworth University’s 125th anniversary, write a poem of exactly 125 words. Three of those words must be “pine,” “cone,” and “curtain.”

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The contest is open to all Whitworth Students. Previous 1st place winners are ineligible. Entries should be submitted at the English Department front desk no later than 5:00 pm on Monday, March 2; please attach your name and contact information on a separate sheet of paper. No entry fee. Multiple submissions permitted.

Prizes
1st Place: $50 gift card to Auntie’s Bookstore
2nd Place: $20 gift card to Auntie’s Bookstore

Guest JudgeSummer 2013A_Migliazzo_5x7 (1)

Arlin C. Migliazzo is professor of history at Whitworth University where he has taught since 1983. He received the B.A. from Biola College (1974), his M.A. from Northern Arizona University (1975), and the Ph.D. from Washington State University (1982). His publications include essays and articles on ethnic studies, the Pacific Northwest, colonial South Carolina, church-related higher education, the history of evangelicalism, and comparative democratic development. He has also published some of his poetry in Script, the Whitworth University literary journal.