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Margaret Atwood Gets Behind an On-line Poetry Prize

By Harriet Staff

From The Province:

Canadian literary icon Margaret Atwood is lending her name to a new online poetry prize — “The Attys” — sponsored by a Toronto-based social media site for budding writers, Wattpad, which claims a community of more than nine million users that includes the Oryx and Crake author herself.

And Atwood, who recently posted two of her own poems at Wattpad and has extolled the virtues of the site as an important incubator for young writing talent, has offered to help judge the contest and offer professional feedback to the top three finishers.

She’s even dangling a chance at literary immortality for one lucky contest entrant who wins a random draw: having his or her name attached to a character or place in Atwood’s next novel.

Participants are required to submit a collection of 10 poems in various poetic styles, with the competition divided between experienced writers and “enthusiasts” new to the field.

“I’m very honoured to have it named after me,” Atwood states at The Attys page on Wattpad’s website. “Poetry is at the core of each language, and language is at the core of our humanity.”

She adds: “May you enjoy composing your own poems, and enjoy reading the poems of others! These are very ancient pleasures; by sharing in them, you are sharing in our own deep history.”

Full article here.

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Posted in Poetry News on Monday, August 6th, 2012 by Harriet Staff.