Toronto-based Wattpad, an online community of readers and writers, together with literary legend Margaret Atwood, has launched The Attys.
The Attys, name inspired by Atwood, are global digital poetry award—open to all poets and designed to celebrate online poetry, while shining a spotlight on new and undiscovered poets, both amateurs and seasoned writers.
“We want to create a digital-first opportunity for poets to share their work and for audiences to discover the genre. Poems can be submitted from anywhere, and we anticipate that some entries will be written on mobile devices,” said Allen Lau, CEO and co-founder of Wattpad. “We are honoured to have Margaret Atwood join us as a judge, and are excited to see how the world connects over poetry.”
The Atty Awards welcome writers from around the world to submit poems written in or translated into English in two categories: enthusiasts and competitors. Enthusiasts enter one poem, while competitors must submit ten poems as a collection, with each poem demonstrating a different poetic form.
The submissions process has now begun. Judging will take place after the contest in October. Margaret will select the top three winners herself.
"Poetry is at the core of each language, and language itself is at the core of our humanity," said Atwood. "I hope that all entrants will enjoy both composing and reading the poems of others. These are very ancient pleasures; by sharing in them, we share in our own deep history."
Prizes for the Competitive tier include $1,000, feedback sessions from Atwood via Fanado, copies of the Griffin Poetry Awards Anthology, subscriptions to Story is a State of Mind, and digital participation certificates signed by Atwood. Winning poems will be featured on Wattpad. Enthusiasts will be entered into a draw for a Google Nexus tablet and other prizes.