Federation of British Columbia Writers, 2019 Literary Writes Poetry Contest is now closed.


The Federation of British Columbia Writers (FBCW) congratulates the two poets who tied as winners of its 2019 Literary Writes contest, themed “Who Is ‘The Other’?”

The winners are North Vancouver poet Fran Bourassa, for her poem “The Other” and Kelowna poet Lesley-Anne Evans, for her poem “What You Can Carry”.

Fran and Lesley-Anne’s poems were selected from a short list of five poems that included Port Alberni poet Derek Hanebury’s “By Any Other Name”, New Westminster poet Chelsea Comeau’s “The Other”, and Heriot Bay poet Carol Gall’s “Mt. Samurai Regional Park.”

The response to the contest was strong, with nearly 60 poems submitted from across BC and beyond.

“It was wonderful to see the wide range of approaches to the rich and complex theme of ‘The Other’,” said contest judge, Vancouver poet Fiona Tinwei Lam. “Each of the winning poems was moving and powerful in its own way, integrating narrative, vivid imagery and lyric intensity to explore the devastating impact of the past on the present.”

The FBCW wishes to thank all the writers who submitted, as well as the judges and first readers.

“We are very fortunate to have many excellent writers amongst our membership who volunteer as first readers,” said FBCW president, Ann Graham Walker. “Without them, these contests would not be possible.”

In the young writers’ category, which was judged by Renee Saklikar, Poet Laureate of the City of Surrey, four poets received Honourable Mentions, led by Ulricke Bucksteg-Neuhoff, a grade 10 student from Nanaimo, for her poem “Who Is ‘The Other’?”

Other Honourable Mentions went to Danica Custance, a grade 9 student from Maple Ridge for her poem “Another’s Other”; Ayesha Pervez, a grade 12 student from Delta for her poem “Men Of My Heritage” and Harley McFarlane of Maple Ridge for her poem “Whole”.

“I thought the young poets who submitted tackled our theme with particular bravery and I want to thank them for their poems,” Walker said.

The FBCW’s next contest will be the BC Short, which invites submissions of short stories of 1,200 to 2,000 words with no specified theme. The contest opens on April 15!

To see the past contest details, go here.

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