PDF to download the poetry contest rules and entry from.

Masters Poetry Competition is sponsored by:

Check back for Entry Dates for the 2016 Contest!

The Masters Poetry Competition is held in memory of Joan Johnson-Blackwell, long-time Lewistown, Illinois resident and champion of the work of Edgar Lee Masters and his connection to Lewistown. Joan spent countless hours over many years educating local residents on the work of Masters by teaching it in the local schools, and organizing and promoting Edgar Lee Masters related public events, including, Masters home tours, poetry and creative writing contests.

Masters Poetry Competition Rules:

Theme – All entries to the competition are expected to follow the thematic influence of Edgar Lee Masters’s Spoon River Anthology. Poems should show some element of the landscapes and ways of life of Spoon River Valley region, especially the places and people of Fulton County, Illinois. Poems may be fiction or non-fiction.

Age Divisions & Awards – All entries will be judged on the basis of originality, imagery, insight, innovations, and technical precision. Proofread your final copy. Prizes will be awarded for entries by writers in each of three age divisions: Youth ages 18 and under; Adults ages 19-64; and Seniors ages 65+. A grand prize called “The Edgar Award” will also be granted by the judges for a poem from any age group which deserves superior recognition. Popular vote awards for each category will also be given. Entries will be posted as they are received on our Facebook page at: Popular votes are tallied by Facebook “Likes.”

Entry FormatA writer may submit up to three original poems (maximum 24 lines each) which should be placed on standard 8 1/2” x 11” sheet with one poem per page, one side. In addition to the poem, the following information (and NO other information) should be placed in the upper left hand corner of the page: 1.) the poet’s initials; 2.) poet’s age 3.) Poem’s title. Each poem entry must be accompanied by a completed entry form. Entry forms can be downloaded by clicking on the entry form download on the right side bar of this page. Entry forms may also be obtained by contacting Amanda Woodruff by calling (309)547-4301 or emailing [email protected].

Entry ProcedureOnline entries are preferred and may be made by uploading your poem (upload file extensions accepted – .doc, .docx, .rtf, .txt) below and filling out and submitting the entry form. Repeat for each poem entry. Entries may also be mailed to Masters Poetry Competition, Lewistown City Hall, Attn: Amanda Woodruff, 119 South Adams St., Lewistown, IL 61542. All contest entries must be received by Sunday, September 13, 2015. Entries may also be hand delivered to the listed address. There are no entry fees to enter the competition. No purchase necessary. No financial obligation to enter or win the competition. All entries must be the original creation of the submitting author. All rights to the entries must be owned by the author and shall remain the property of the author. The entry must not infringe the copyright, trademark, privacy, publicity or other intellectual property rights of any person or entity. The author gives permission to the Fulton County Arts Council to publish and display the entry on the web and printed publications, accompanied by author credit. Poems containing vulgarity or offensive material will be disqualified, as determined by the Judges and/or Sponsor in their sole and absolute discretion. The sponsors reserve the right to disqualify any entry it deems inappropriate.

All mailed or hand delivered entries must include a completed copy of the entry form with each poem. The form may be photocopied for multiple submissions. The Masters Poetry Competition collects personal information for the purpose of notifying competition winners. All information submitted is kept in confidence and used solely for notification purposes and shall not be made public. The Masters Poetry Competition does not lease, sell, or share personal information collected.