Competition Report – 24-Hour Poem competition (2019 edition)

Well that’s it for another year – the winners have been chosen, I’ve sent them all emails to notify them, and it’s just a matter now of getting the prizes out to everybody. And trying to overcome the desire to run screaming from the room every time my inbox goes ting …

But enough of that, I hear you cry, we don’t care about the scars to your mental health. A pox upon it! Tell us, you tormentress, who won?

I’m so glad you asked. Drumroll please:

Redefinite by Olivia Macassey

Too late for our favourite pasta restaurant (the one with ambience and an interesting beer list) by Kirstie McHale

OH Choice:
la maison oiseau by Briar Lawry

Contestants’ Pick:
Karori by Mark Edgecomb

Se • par • ate by Ivy Alvarez
Tiger Tiger 
by Anita Arlov
by Wanda Barker
Bare Cupboards 
by Jessica Ensing
the thing between us 
by Gail Ingram
Musings from a bathtub at 5am 
by Sue Le Mesurier
12AM, Bathtub 
by Rebecca Nash
The not Quite Tragic tale of Alphonse Fudge 
by Julia Scanlon
Bruised Dawn 
by Sophia Wilson

Bonus Special Mention for Best Poem taking advantage of me mistyping Bathtub as Bathub:
Dracula by Rachel Connor

The winning poems are all now up on the competition page – same password as before.

We had 376 people register for the competition, and 184 poems make it in by the deadline. For those of you who are wondering what the words were, they were as follows:


Quite a few people wrote about waiters behaving in a manner that doesn’t inspire me to eat out any time soon. And judges didn’t fare a lot better. Trousers tended to be down, bathtubs used for unhappy purposes, and mutton spent a lot of poem-time wearing lipstick and a mini-skirt, so-to-speak.  Terminal was used medically far more often than transportation-ly, But the word that caused the most consternation was bonce, for which people can blame Erik Kennedy. The most successful poems used it to set the tone of the whole piece, or riffed on it in various ways.

So there you have it. I look forward to encountering these poems again in magazines and at readings. (Although I may need to be fortified with strong alcohol first, so give me a bit of notice!)

Again, many thanks to our generous sponsor, Victoria University Press. And thank you to everyone who took part – I did warn you that there would be chaos …


4 Replies to “Competition Report – 24-Hour Poem competition (2019 edition)”

  1. Hi Joanna Thanks for letting me submit a poem this year. I really enjoyed it. I forgot the rules regarding publishing. Am I now allowed to publish my poem elsewhere? My Facebook friends have been waiting! Kind regards Julz

    1. Hi Julz, yes, absolutely! The reason I put everything behind a password is so that it makes it a private group, rather than public. So as far as publication elsewhere and your rights to your own poems go, it’s exactly the same as if you’d shared it with me over a cup of coffee. Publish away! And feel free to link to the blog post if you so desire. (Just not to the password-protected competition page, since that would kinda undermine the point … 😉)

      1. Hi Joanna. I cant find the 24hr Competition Page with Winners Poems on…and Comp passwords not working and forgotten first one…can you please email link and password to me.
        Competition was fun.
        Cheers, Christine J

        1. Have sent them. For anyone else who has similarly lost things, you’re looking for the link and password you were sent that gave you access to the page where the words were posted and where you were meant to submit your poem (before I discovered the form wasn’t working … sigh!)

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