When I noticed the “Stardust” theme of this year’s Hammond House Publishing literary contest, I knew I’d have to submit a few poems. That theme is right up my alley in so many ways.
Their publishing model is a print anthology that will appear in 2022, and the contest results were delivered via YouTube as part of their regional arts programming in the UK. It was charming to settle in and listen to art news local to the part of England that Hammond House Publishing is based in before the 2021 awards were announced.
My youngest child came into the room as my husband and I were about to hear the contest results and realized he should stop talking and sit down. When my name flashed up on the screen for 1st Prize in the poetry category, we were in a funny state — my husband jumped up shouting, my youngest grabbed my phone to see how we could replay the announcement, and I just felt numb, in a good way.
For me, very much an emerging poet, this is quite simply an exciting moment. Tomorrow, I’ll go back to the work of developing and writing poems and studying the market to see where my work will best fit, but today we’re celebrating. It’s a lot of fun, and I can’t wait to read the 2022 “Stardust” anthology.