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Worcestershire Poet Laureate Competition 2023

Worcestershire Poet Laureate Competition 2023 is now open! The search is ON for Worcestershire’s 13th Poet Laureate – could it be you?

If poetry is in your heart, this could be your breakthrough opportunity to showcase your work and promote poetry as an art form across the county of Worcestershire. How? Send us two poems as either Word (.doc) or .rtf attachments, one on the theme of ‘Forgiveness’ and one original poem of your choice, to with “Worcestershire Poet Laureate 2023” as the subject line.

Entries should be single line spaced and no more than 40 lines in length not including the title line. Poems should be on separate pages. Your name must not appear on either of the poems.

Please also include a statement of interest in the body of your email, explaining why you should be considered for the position, what experience you have in performing and promoting poetry, and what you would bring to the position. Your statement should ideally be no more than 250 words and include a short profile about you as a person.

The closing date for all entries is 12th May 2023 and only one entry per poet is allowed. Do not submit work more than once.

You must be age 20 or over and be resident in the County of Worcestershire to be eligible for the title of Worcestershire Poet Laureate.

Submitted pieces must be original and unpublished in any format. Translations of anyone else’s work are not eligible. Copyright remains with the writer but entries may be published on the Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe website and social media, read at LitFest events and may be included in an anthology later in the year.

You must be available for the LitFest Launch event to perform your poems if requested, we are currently planning our 2023 Festival as a mixture of Live and Online events. The Launch event is scheduled for Sunday 11th June 2023.

All entries will be acknowledged within 72 hours. If you have not heard from us during that time, please contact us. It is your responsibility to confirm your entry has been received.

No alterations can be made after submission and fees will not be refunded. The judges’ decision is final.

Please don’t share your entry poems until the competition.

So what do we expect from our new Laureate?

* To act as an ambassador for poetry for the County of Worcestershire and to promote poetry as an acceptable art form and form of writing.

* To write poems throughout the year as The Poet Laureate for a number of marked occasions, to be arranged by the Poet Laureate with the support of the Festival Committee.

* To make personal (virtual) appearances as the Poet Laureate at key events throughout the County during the year of tenure as The Worcestershire Poet Laureate and to perform live at events as requested.

* To write a regular blog to appear on the our website.

* To prepare a collection of poems for publication. Publication of the collection is paid for by LitFest.

* To promote the Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe during the tenure as Poet Laureate.

* To organise an event for National Poetry Day 2023, 6th October – theme: tbc.

* To organise an event for World Poetry Day 2024, March 21.

* To respond to enquiries as The Worcestershire Poet Laureate in a timely and proactive manner.

* To promote poetry within schools and organisations.

* To undertake press, media, radio and TV interviews as and when appropriate.

* To be present and willing to perform their winning poem at the launch event next year, in June 2024, and to handover to the new Poet Laureate.

* To work closely with the LitFest organisers and directors and to maximise PR and promotional opportunities as far as possible. Opportunities to collaborate with The Worcestershire Poet Laureate Emeritus and The Young Poet Laureate may also arise.

* To maintain contact via email/phone with all three directors and have regular meetings to discuss plans.

The entry fee for the competition is £5.00 and you can pay via PayPal:

£5 Entry Fee

Please quote your PayPal transaction number in the body of your email when you submit your poems.

Alternatively you can send a cheque made payable to “Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe” to: Worcestershire Poet Laureate Competition, Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe, Appletree Cottage, 7 Nursery Road, St John’s, Worcester WR2 4HB.

Good luck and we look forward to receiving your entries!

Entry implies acceptance of all the rules. Failure to comply with the rules will result in disqualification.

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