2023 Tournament of Writers winners named

Alisha Siebers, Executive Director, Vicksburg Cultural Arts Center

Congratulations to the winners of the 2023 Tournament of Writers! The competition accepts submissions in the genres of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Each piece is evaluated by a panel of judges who score the submissions using a rubric that evaluates effective use of language, powerful deployment of literary techniques, and creativity. Based on these scores, judges award prizes within each genre, separated out by age divisions.

This year’s FICTION winners are: First Place: Gabbi Kirchner (Junior Division), Shelbie Walton (Young Adult Division), Ross Landers (Adult Division), and Rick Chambers (Senior Division). Second Place: Samantha Ball, Wyatt Walton, Simon Thalmann, and Francis Kartch. Third Place: Jerzie Harp, Alex Roberts, Dustin Colwell, and Nancy Smith. This year’s NONFICTION winners are: First Place: Lillian Ross, Emilie Helmbold, Kristin Youngs, and Mark Stucky. Second Place: Eleanor Ross, Ashley Porter, and Dan Knasel. Second Place: Eleanor Ross, Ashley Porter, and Dan Knasel. Third Place: Simon Thalmann and Bonnie Oswalt. Our POETRY winners are: First Place: Noelle Germay, Hannah Laughery, Carolyn Adams, and Carol Braymer. Second Place: Hayden Moden, Ashley Gerber, Ashley Porter, and Charles Crouch. Third Place: Hayden McCarty, Kaylen Holden-Pierce, Dustin Colwell, and Jo Wiley.

All entries in the tournament are published in the “Small Town Anthology,” which has been painstakingly complied by Syd Bastos, complete with a beautiful cover designed by our new board member, Audrey Seilheimer. In “Small Town Anthology,” Volume IX, you will find pieces by new writers and seasoned writers of all ages and walks of life. You’ll be transported to all kinds of locations: to our familiar lakes, forests, cabins, and beaches; but also to Alaska, deep space, Koonikoo Island, fairyland, and a place where moose have gooses on their heads. You’ll travel back to childhood, ahead to old age, step into dystopian futures, and ponder the past. A kaleidoscope of narrators will take you on these journeys: warriors, mothers, con men, moon princesses, alpha wolves, and even a sentient carrot.

Copies will be available for purchase for $10 at the free Tournament’s Inspiration Celebration on Thursday, April 6 at 6 p.m. at R & R Events. The public is invited to join us as we celebrate our local writers’ courage and creativity. Come hear a few of the writers read their poems and join us for a book-signing party. We will be announcing the Judges’ Choice Grand Prize and the new Gilbert and Ivy Youth Writers Award at the celebration.

For more information about the Tournament of Writers or about how to purchase the “Small Town Anthology” on Amazon, visit our website at http://www.vicksburgarts.com.

Leave a Reply