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Please note that because of impending weather the SPARKS literary festival has been postponed until Feb 5th.

Deadline: 3 pm on Friday, January 13, 2017

The 2017 SPARKS Poetry Competition welcomes submissions of poetry on any subject in any style or form.

Through the continuing sponsorship of the law firm Browne Fitzgerald Morgan & Avis, SPARKS is again able to offer prizes for the judges' selection of three poems, of $250, $150, and $100.

Information and guidelines for entering:

  • Poems may be on any subject, in any style, and in any form.
  • The deadline for receipt of submissions is 3 pm on Friday, January 12, 2017.
  • Send one or two poems, typed on standard 8.5 x 11 paper. Number the pages of your poem if the piece has more than one page. Clip pages securely together.
  • Poems may run up to eighty lines. There is no minimum length.
  • Submissions must be hitherto unpublished in any form (print, electronic, or aural).
  • If submitting by email, please send your poem(s) as a WORD attachment with no identifying information in the attachment. In the body of the email, include your name, postal address, and telephone number. Send to:
  • If submitting by post, type your poem(s) on sheets separate from that with your identifying information on it. Write those details (name, postal address, email, telephone number) on a separate sheet of paper. Send postal submissions to:

    SPARKS Poetry Competition
    Department of English
    Arts Building
    Memorial University of Newfoundland
    St. John's NL A1C 5S7
  • The winners will be announced in the final session of the festival on Sunday January 22nd, 2017, and the prizes will be presented at that time.
  • All participants in the festival are eligible, as are all residents or former residents of Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • One of the winning poems may be chosen subsequently (with the author's permission only) as the basis for an artist's print in support of SPARKS.


The SPARKS Literary Festival was founded in 2009 by poet and professor Mary Dalton, who served as the festival's director for the first 6 years. Now organized by Memorial's Department of English with ongoing support from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, SPARKS continues to celebrate the literary creations of Newfoundland and Labrador and showcase writers at various stages of their creative lives. It is what Dalton has called a "word spree." The festival also makes available displays of books and journals published in Newfoundland and Labrador and a mini-bookstore featuring works by the authors reading at the festival.


SPARKS Literary Festival is active on Facebook. Visit our page for the social side of SPARKS!