And the winners are…

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13th Kathleen Julia Bates Memorial Writing Competition


For Australian writers only, this competition was for a non-rhyming poem suitable for a child up to the age of 12 years. Judges were Dianne (Di) Bates who sponsored the competition in memory of her late daughter, and her husband, poet and author Bill Condon.

There were 44 submissions. Overall, the standard was very good with some memorable poems. Some (excellent) poems which missed out on being placed were thought to be too sophisticated for young readers. Very few of the poems were playful or about children’s everyday life; most of the poems focussed on aspects of nature.

The judges have chosen the following poems for prizes:

1st prize of $150 for ‘Roar’ by Jaz Stutley

2nd prize of $100 for ‘Looking at the Moon through Binoculars’ by Vanessa Proctor

3rd prize of $50 for ‘Refugee Girl in the Playground’ by Duncan Richardson

The following poems were Highly Commended: ‘The Stars in the Sea’ by Paula Stevenson and ‘Dog = Love’ by Holly Williams

Thank you to all poets for entering the competition!


Poetry Prompt #31

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poetry prompt #31Happy Monday everyone! I hope you’re feeling creative. This week’s challenge is to write a non-rhyming poem to enter into the 13th Katherine Julia Bates Memorial Writing Competition.

For Australian writers only, this competition offers $150 first prize, $100 second prize and $50 third prize plus certificates for winners and short-listed entries. Poems must be suitable for a child up to the age of 12 years. Maximum length is 30 lines and the theme is open. All entries are to have a separate title page with full contact details including email address for results. There is no entry fee. One entry per person.

Entries must be received on or before 31 August, 2016. Results will be announced on the Australian Children’s Poetry blog site and in Buzz Words ( on 1 October.

Email entries to me at

Go to it!

Happy writing,