Dr. Nelson

CALLING ALL WRITERS: Undergraduate Writing Contest

Do you like to write? No, not boring newspaper articles! Things like poetry or short stories? If that’s the case, the Undergraduate Writing Contest might be something worth checking out.

The contest, which is being run by Dr. Michael Ann Nelson and Dr. Austin Tremblay of the Humanities Department, offers undergraduates taking at least 6 credit hours a chance to have their writing appraised and possibly even win some cash rewards.

There are four categories for submissions- Poetry, Fiction, and Creative Non-Fiction. Prose submissions must be limited to 4,000 words while poetry submissions must include at least 3-5 poems. Also, no graduate students, this is for under-grads only.

The contest was the brainchild of Dr. Nelson, who ran the first one during the 2014-2015 school year.

“I teach a lot of general education courses and students from all different kinds of disciplines, not just English, would tell me that they like to write poetry or stories.” Dr. Nelson said, “I thought that if we had a campus-wide undergraduate creative writing contest, this would allow students to showcase their creative work.”

Dr. Austin Tremblay, a newcomer to WNMU’s Humanities Department, is hosting the contest this year. He was enthusiastic about the contest, calling creative writing an “equal opportunity rewarder” because it allows the writing to speak for itself.

The contest prizes include a first place prize of $50 for the winners in each category and a second place prize of $25 for each runner-up. The awards were funded through the Academic Affairs office under Provost Jack Crocker.

“I hope all undergraduate Western students will take advantage of the opportunity to submit to this contest. Cash prizes are never a bad incentive,” Tremblay said. “More than that, though, it might spark an interest in writing, either a new one or one that’s been under the skin for a long time.”

The contest ends on December 1st. For further instructions on submitting your work, visit humanities.wnmu.edu/contest/. Winners will be announced in January, in an award ceremony that will be announced soon.

Pictured: 2014 fiction winner Emily Rosa and Dr. Michael Ann Nelson

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Eric Lowe is the current Editor of the Mustang Newspaper. He has been writing professionally since August 2014.