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Winners announced in “Search for Aspiring Writers” contest

on May 12, 2015

Seventh-graders Elizabeth Melendez and Varin Sawh win in short story and poetry categories

This past March, local writer/author, community member and Warwick middle school parent Tom Hoffman helped kick off Mrs. Bakonyi’s “Search for Aspiring Writers” contest, which invited aspiring writers from her 7th-grade classes to submit their best works in poetry, short fiction and creative nonfiction.

Mrs. Bakonyi and Mr. Hoffman have announced the winners for the writing contest: Elizabeth Melendez is the winner of the short fiction category with The Wanderer while Varin Sawh has won the poetry category with his poem The Seasons.

“All of the submissions were outstanding and it was very difficult coming up with a single winner in each category,” said Mrs. Bakonyi. “There were entries in each category that stood out on their own. The level of creative writing among the students who participated is exemplary and each of the writers developed compelling narratives or prose that was quite gripping.”

But ultimately, only one winner can be selected from each category. “I hope that each of the students who participated will continue to develop their creative talents and find joy in the art of writing and I thank them for their participation and interest.”

Tom Hoffman’s Feedback on each winning piece:

Short Story Winner: The Wanderer by Elizabeth Melendez

“There were several short stories that were submitted that provided compelling imagery, use of language, and strong narratives. Ultimately, The Wanderer by Elizabeth Melendez was selected for its tightly-written and extremely compelling plot. Elizabeth’s story gripped me from the opening sentence which is imperative for any story to keep readers engaged. I also liked the tension she created in a short narrative and how she kept the story extremely focused with an interesting twist at the end. Well done!”

Poetry Winner: The Seasons by Varin Sawh

“There were some excellent entries in the poetry competition. Many of the poems were highly expressive and flowed well to capture and maintain the reader’s interest. Varin’s use of meter (rhythm), sentence structure, and vocabulary was outstanding. The pace and flow of each poem varies from one work to the next depending on the format that’s used. Varin captured the pace of this poem exceptionally which also translated well into the seasonal theme of the poem. Varin also does an exceptional job of telling a story to the reader that is well-connected and fluid. Terrific!”


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