This year we’ve simplified the competition. It’s for 16-19 year olds only and there’s just one way of entering – by writing a poem of your own in response to one of the Forward shortlisted poems, along with a short commentary explaining how the poem influenced you. The reason? We were so bowled over by the superb quality of the poems and commentaries in last year’s competition that we’ve decided to make the whole competition Creative Critics from now on!
This year, the emagazine editors will be joined by poet and teacher Daljit Nagra to judge the competition.
Submitting your entry
Last year’s winner Natalie Perman writes:
Winning the Forward Student Critics’ Competition was an incredible opportunity; not only to read and respond to contemporary poets who are pushing the boundaries of how we define poetry, but also to meet up-and-coming poets who won, or were commended, in the other prize categories. The competition helped me to become a committee member of the Oxford University Poetry Society, one of the oldest student poetry societies in the world, and has given me the confidence to enter other competitions and submit my work for magazines. I was a Foyle’s Young Poet 2017 and was commended in 2018, and my work has appeared in various magazines and publications, such as ASH, the student-run termly poetry magazine, and on the Poetry Society website. The Forward Student Critics’ Competition was the push I needed to believe in my own writing, and allowed me to discover some of my new favourite poets.
To see the kind of thing we’re hoping for, download Natalie's winning poem and reflection and the two highly-commended creative-critical entries.