Writers Competition Winners Announced

Winners in the 2004 Joyce Dunn Memorial Writers Competition were announced recently at the Shuswap Lake International writers’ Festival.

The more than 150 entries came from across Canada and beyond. Given the size of the field, British Columbia writers fared extremely well, sweeping all but one of the top three spots in each category. The single exception was Náim Zerbes, an eleven year old from Romania, writing in the last of four languages he has learned, and making an exemplary job of it.

Three writers were multiple winners, two of them in different categories, underlining the quality and versatility of their work.

Judges professed themselves hard put to choose only three winners in each category, and extremely pleased with the quality over all.

An interesting development this year was the number of entries from school classes, teachers using the competition as an incentive to encourage their students to write. Competition (and Festival) organizers are delighted with this development, as it falls squarely within the mandate they have set for themselves — to encourage and facilitate interest in the written arts and access to some of the best writers and writing in Canada today. English teachers are also finding the Festival a rich resource for inspiring their work with students.

Writers are encouraged to begin work on their 2005 entries. The new deadline will be moved up to May 1st instead of the 15th to facilitate production of the anthology of winning entries. 2004 anthologies are still available at $10 each from Bookingham Palace and Book Nook in Salmon Arm, or from the Festival secretary, Elaine Blanc, RR1 S13 C23 Tappen BC V0E 2X0.

Joyce Dunn was a Chase author and journalist, and a mentor to many BC writers, both privately and through her work with the Canadian Authors Association. Joyce died in 1997 of Lou Gehrig’s disease.

2004 winners:

Youth 6 – 12 Story

Judges: Myriam Dostert, Vernon, and Chris McMahen, Armstrong

1. The World Unseen Sean M. Hodges, Powell River 2. How the Robin Beat the Eagle Lia (Murphy) Pulsifer, Salmon Arm

3. Kinwu’s Quest Náim Zerbes, Clug, Romania

Youth 6 – 12 Poetry

Judges: Karen Bissenden, Salmon Arm, and Lee Caufield, Coldstream

1. Stone Mushrooms and Great Italian Pasta Lindsey Pulice, Burnaby

2. Winter’s Heart Sean M. Hodges, Powell River

3. How I Approach Poetry Heather Nehera, Burnaby

Youth 13 – 18 Story

Judges: Joan Weir and Mary Lou Routley, Kamloops

1. Something About the Light Jessica Stein, Vernon 2. Omaha Ian Boyef, Kamloops

3. A Piece of My Heart Jordana Comazzetto, Kamloops

Youth 13 – 18 Poetry

Judges: Karen Bissenden, Salmon Arm, and Lee Caufield, Coldstream

1. Deluge (#81) Jessica Housty, Victoria 2. My World Sarah Fletcher, 150 Mile House 3. Mirrored – A Gloso Molly Noonan, Vernon

Adult Fiction

Judges: Chris Castanier and Elaine Holmes, Chase

1. Toes Louise Sidley, Rossland

2. How to Skin a Cat Gina McBeth, Kelowna

3. Farm Hands Lee Caufield, Coldstream

Adult Non-fiction

Judge: Margaret Thompson, Victoria

1. Remembering Innocence Louise Sidley, Rossland 2. Fitting In Karen Bissenden, Salmon Arm 3. Greenhorns in Gumboots Ruth Scoullar, Quesnel

Adult Poetry

Judges: Klay Dyer and Cynthia Nash, Salmon Arm

1. Almost Eighty-eight Heidi Garnett, Kelowna 2. There is no strength in tomatoes Bryna Hallam, Armstrong 3. Sister dearest Bryna Hallam, Armstrong

More information is available from Fran Bach, Festival Coordinator,

250-679-5362 or meaghen@charter.net.