Category Archives: Wadadli Pen 2011

All the news you’ll need about the Best of Books Wadadli Youth Pen Prize Challenge 2011

Bee pics 2011

Thanks to Margo of Frank B. Armstrong for these mementos of Wadadli Pen’s participation in the Haliborange-Rotaract Spelling Bee, though even she has acknowledged that they’re not the best. So, consider them the teaser and hopefully we’ll have better pics of the full event in  time. But suffice it to say the Bee finalists did amazingly well, as you’ll find in this article. Congrats to the winner, Keondre Herbert of St. John’s Catholic Primary.

And 2010 Bee finalist and 2011 Wadadli Pen finalist, Zuri Holder, a student of Sunnyside Tutorial and long time Cushion Club member, was selected to read his story The Scary Night at the event, following my brief introduction. Here’s a grainy record of both our participation in the programme:

introducing Zuri

 

Zuri delivering, with a capital D

 

 

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Spelling Bee Finals this Weekend

The 5th Annual Haliborange-Rotaract Spelling Bee Finals is set for this Saturday 15th October, Saturday morning (10 ish usually) at Antigua’s Multipurpose Centre. Hope you’ll come out and support the kids (finalists Annafra John-Pierre of Five Islands Primary; Jahsheeda Brodie of Freetown Primary; Jermaine Simon of Gospel Light Elementary; Keodre Herbert of St. John’s Catholic Primary; and Alec Wilkinson of St. Nicholas Primary). I plan to be there. And apart from the competition, I’m also excited by the invitation received by one of our Wadadli Pen finalists (also a Bee finalist last year) to read his story at the event.

For event coverage leading up to the semifinals which whittled the field of 10 to five and more Bee info in general, visit here. For our parade of past winners, visit here.

And here’s a blast from the past…well, from last year:

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Keepsake – Edison Arts Camp

Edison Liburd donated two scholarships to his summer arts camp to the Wadadli Pen prize package in 2011. Pictured are participants in the first installment of the camp including, front row centre, Freya Platts-Costeloe, second runner up in the Wadadli Pen 2011 visual art challenge. Freya shows enormous potential as an artist and we congratulate and encourage her.

photo courtesy Trip Antigua.

To see Freya’s Winning image go here. And, as Edison just reminded me the exhibition of work from the second installment of his camp takes place Friday 22nd July between 12 and 5 p.m. at his gallery upstairs the Best of Books.

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Wadadli Pen and Anansesem

The Anansesem special issue featuring the Best of Wadadli Pen has gone live: http://www.anansesem.com/2011/07/special-issue-wadadli-pen.html

They’ll be uploading two stories per day from this and past years ’til done, bringing these stories by young Antiguans and Barbudans to a wider audience. Thanks to Summer Edward (a Trinidadian writer based in the US) and her (Caribbean-International) team for partnering with us on this.

 

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Post Note

Post contest, winners have been making the media rounds; Devra Thomas, as overall and 18 to 35 winner, has been contacted by and will be featured in a pending publication by News Pages; and Orique Gordon, along with other winners in the 12 and under category, Zuri Holder and Keillia Mentor appeared with their parents on Auntie Debbie’s Our House on Observer Radio. Winning stories through the years will be featured in a special issue of online children’s journal, Anansesem.

But it’s the small moments that resonate…receiving the edits of the short listed pieces from the writers
(who readily embraced the redrafting process guided by Judge Brenda Lee Browne’s comments), preparing and delivering the prizes (it’s a bit like wrapping presents at Christmas), and feedback like this…

Orique sharing that he’s started work on another story, Zuri sharing that he just keeps staring at the cheque he received (not depositing or cashing it, just staring at it!), their faces as they read their stories on air (nerves and joy in one nice bundle), the pride in the parents’ voices…

And emails like these:

“We were thrilled to be a part of such a lovely event and Freya was blown over with all her ‘Winnings’. We have been to
register with Edison and I am (sure) she will benefit greatly from his expertise .”
– from the mom of eight year old Freya Platts-Costeloe
(second in the art contest…the Edison mentioned is Edison Liburd who donated two scholarships worth EC$300+ each to his art camp to the two art winners)

“Elated mother (what a mother’s day gift)”
– from Orique’s mom on learnng her son had made the finals.

“I am so grateful to write and receive encouragement…you inspire me to step out”
– from Devra after her win.

The truth is, they inspire me.

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Wadadli Pen 2011 Winners’ Release

The winners of the 2011 Wadadli Pen Challenge were announced and awarded Saturday night, during day one of the Best of Books 10-year-anniversary Outdoor Book and Story Fair at the University Centre.

The overall winner was stay-at-home-mom and Anglican youth worker Devra
Thomas, author of Sands and Butterflies. Eleven-year-old Minoah Magnet student Orique Gordon, author of The Lost Coin tied for second place with Shakeema Edwards, a 17-year-old Antigua State College student and author of The Curse of the Kumina. Princess Margaret School student Chatrisse Beazer, 16-year-old author of The Legend of Banana Boy, was third.

The judges praised the “natural dialogue” and “lovely pace” of Sands and Butterflies, a story involving a mother-daughter beach adventure but about much more. The Lost Coin, a story told from a unique perspective, was said to have a “nice rhythm” while the author of Curse of the Kumina “pack(ed) in conflict, humour and a resolution” in her story. The Legend of Banana Boy, meanwhile, was a bit of old school storytelling with an unlikely superhero described as having “nice tension and natural rhythm.”

READ THE REST AT http://www.antiguaobserver.com/?p=60621

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2011 Wadadli Pen Awards Ceremony Pictorial

These are images of the Wadadli Pen awards ceremony posted by Best of Books to Facebook. Enjoy.

me, right, with Best of Books owner, EM Grimes Graeme.

A good turnout as book lovers turned up on June 25th to celebrate Best of Books' 10th anniversary and witness the Wadadli Pen 2011 awards presentation.

Sharifa George (pictured at podium), Monica David, Through the Window author Floree Williams, and Wadadli Pen judge Brenda Lee Browne joined me in reading excerpts from the top stories during the presentation ceremony.

Brenda Lee Browne.

Art winner Hudle Jennings accepting her prizes from Best of Books owner EM Grimes Graeme.

Under 12 winner and second best overall Orique Gordon accepting his prizes from Best of Books owner E.M. Grimes Graeme.

Chatrisse Beazer, 13 to 17 winner, and third placed overall, accepting her prizes from Best of Books owner E. M. Grimes Graeme.

Shakeema Edwards, second placed in 13 to 17 and overall, accepting her prizes from EM Grimes Graeme, Best of Books owner.

Second runner up, 13 to 17, Ardis Lavelle.

Overall winner and 18 to 35 winner Devra Thomas poses with the Challenge plaque (set to hang in the Best of Books downtown store) and Best of Books storeowner, EM Grimes Graeme.

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SANDS AND BUTTERFLIES BY DEVRA THOMAS

cover art by Hudle Jennings, winning entry in the visual arts category of the Wadadli Pen Challenge 2011.

“Mommy, how many sand on the beach?” Kyle asked from the back seat of the car.

I adjusted the rear view mirror to observe my six-year-old. The hat on her head did nothing to hide her uncombed hair and
curious expression.  “No se,” I responded in Spanish.

“Why?”

“There are too many to count, sweetheart.  So, are you ready for the beach?” I asked.

“Don’t forget to pick up Haley, mommy! She said she is going to help me count the sand.”

I thought to myself, this is going to be a long day.

Kyle is a free spirit with a wild imagination. I remembered the day her teacher called to let me know that Kyle brought her teddy bear to school and insisted that he get a desk and table right next to her.

“Mommy, daddy say you can’t drive.”

I smiled as I made a mental note to settle that score with Tom.

“He said you drive slow.”

“The word is slowly, Kyle.  Not slow.”

“Mommy, look cane!”  She pointed as we approached a stop with a vendor selling cane and coconut water.

“Two bags, please,” I shouted as we approached the vendor.  He smiled as he handed me the bags.

“Mommy, what happened to his teeth?” Kyle asked softly as we drove off.

I passed a cane to her without responding.  We spent the next few minutes of the drive in silence.

“We are coming close to Haley’s house, sweetheart.”

“Yeah,” she said with a smile, “Haley’s daddy said their road is a pond.  What is a pond, mommy?”

“Well, it’s just a body of water; almost like the beach.” I answered.

Haley lived on the way to the beach and as we entered her road I immediately understood why Haley’s dad said what he did. The road was filled with numerous potholes.

“Where is the pond?” Kyle asked as she looked all around her.

“Well,” I started uncertainly, “the pond is all dry right now because we haven’t had any rain for a while.”

She opened her mouth to respond but then saw Haley running towards the car.

“Kyle, you want to see my bath suit?” Haley said as she entered the car.

We drove away from the house as slowly as we approached it.  The car was filled with the excited chatter of two six-year-olds who could have easily passed for twins.  I was forgotten.

“We are here!” I said a few minutes later.

“Yeah!” they both shouted.

The small beach was filled with tourists and a few vendors selling souvenirs.

“Mommy,” Kyle whispered, “they are all white.”

I looked at her with understanding and decided to take the bull by the horn.  I led them back to the car.

“Kyle, remember those butterflies we saw in the garden yesterday?”

“Yes.” She answered.

“What colours were they?” I asked her.

“Yellow and blue and…” she said.

“Were they not all butterflies?” I interrupted her.

“Yes, mommy and they were pretty.”

“Well, we are like those butterflies Kyle.  We have many different colours but we are all God’s people and we are all beautiful!”

“Mommy, can we go out now?” They had heard enough.

“Let’s go count some sand,” I said.

“No, Mommy,” Kyle said as she held Haley’s hand and ran ahead of me, “we are going to count butterflies.”

But there are no butterflies here, I said to myself.

I laughed out loud as I heard her say: “one white, two white, one pink…”  I had to catch up fast.  It was time for another chat.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Sands and Butterflies, winner of the 18 to 35 category and overall winner in the Best of Books Wadadli Pen Challenge 2011, was written by Devra Thomas. The All Saints Road resident, formerly a bilingual client services associate at Stanford International Bank, says she now works “in the employ of my 18 month old daughter as ‘mommy-in-charge’.” She’s also been engaged in the past in youth work at St. Peter’s Anglican Church, the Boys Training School and the Sunshine Home for Girls; and has offered to assist with Wadadli Pen in future – we will be taking her up on that. A self-described passionate reader, Devra, says she favours stories with a moral: “I must finish my reading a bit wiser – with a sense of accomplishment and fulfillment.” She is a passionate writer whose writing, she says, reflects her Christian faith; and who is looking
forward to expanding beyond her personal writing to honing her skills and writing pieces that will inspire and educate the public, particularly youths.

Devra accepting the ABII trophy

With Sands and Butterflies, she and Wadadli Pen’s children’s lit challenge proved a match made in heaven.

COPYRIGHT INFORMATION & TERMS OF USE
Copyright of the winning Wadadli Pen stories and/or art work featured on this site belongs to the creators of the individual works and are used here purely for promotional and educational purposes. Other blog content, except otherwise noted, is created and/or maintained by Joanne C. Hillhouse. Site content should not be copied, distributed, transmitted, used for commercial purposes, altered, transformed, or built upon without the consent of the copyright holders.

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THE LOST COIN BY ORIQUE GORDON

One sunny day, Mrs. Flinn was baking a cake, but she forgot that she didn’t have milk.  So, she went to get the amount of money needed.

There we were sitting on the shelf and all stuffed into her purse. As she ran to her car, I dropped out of the purse. She looked around on the ground for me but because the driveway was gray I was camouflaged.  Mrs. Flinn gave up the search and took off in
such a speed that I couldn’t roll up to her.

As I was rolling down the street as fast as I could, I rolled into the gutter. The gutter took me underground. The only light there
came through the cracks and holes. I found an exit but the gutter made me green. I washed myself off in a nearby puddle.
Soon I was clean and not green.

I was picked up by a dog.  As I was being carried, the dog’s slobber made me slip out. Then a bird picked me up, but luckily some more slobber was on me, so I slipped out of its claws.

illustration by SA Dixon, an entry in the visual arts category of the 2011 Wadadli Pen Challenge.

Next I fell into a yard with two boys.  I was getting worried that I would never get to my owner again.

When I looked up, I saw that the two boys were sling shooting things.

The two boys grabbed me and sling shot me over the fence into my owner’s head.  I was so happy to see her.

So, she hurried back to the store, and then handed me to the cashier with three other coins.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Orique Sean Gordon was born on Saturday 14th August, 1999 and lives at Bank Alley, St. John’s, Antigua. His parents are Sean  and Dionne Gordon and his sister is Zanique Gordon who is 5 years  old.  He attended  the Beacon Light Academy and now goes to Minoah Magnet Academy.  Orique’s hobbies are playing  football and his games, watching TV and writing stories.  His life’s goal is to be either a pilot, archeologist or a veterinarian working in Africa and Australia.

Could Orique also be a writer? Maybe. His story was popular with the judges earning him both the win in the 12 and Under age category and a tie for second place overall in the Wadadli Pen 2011 challenge.

COPYRIGHT INFORMATION & TERMS OF USE
Copyright of the winning Wadadli Pen stories and/or art work featured on this site belongs to the creators of the individual works and are used here purely for promotional and educational purposes. Other blog content, except otherwise noted, is created and/or maintained by Joanne C. Hillhouse. Site content should not be copied, distributed, transmitted, used for commercial purposes, altered, transformed, or built upon without the consent of the copyright holders.

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FINALISTS – WADADLI PEN CHALLENGE 2011 (VISUAL ARTS)

Hudle Jennings is the winner of the 2011 Wadadli Pen visual arts challenge. She also scored the second spot with the third spot going to eight-year-old Freya Platts-Costeloe.

The challenge was to create supporting art for the short listed stories in the 2011 competition – the idea of illustrations seemed a
good fit given that we’re focused this year on children’s, teen and young adult literature. Art teacher, Renee Philip created the guidelines, which challenged the artists to, among other things, create illustrations that “reflect at least the theme or a specific passage from the stories.” Artists had to pre-register; each was then issued at least two of the stories and charged to go forth and
create. The already small field of registered artists dwindled, but we still got some interesting submissions out of it.

Jennings’ cover art for Devra Thomas’ Sands and Butterflies
most impressed, followed by her cover art for Shakeema Edwards’ The Curse of the Kumina:  Jennings describes her art as ‘computerized collage’.  A graduate of the CTTEC Microsoft Certification Center, she is an aspiring graphic artist who currently works as a customer service representative in the banking industry.

Freya Platts-Costeloe is a third grader at Island Academy and one third of a triplet for her parents.
Her mom, Nettie, informs us that she is a very enthusiastic young artist who is passionate about drawing and painting
in all mediums and on any surface from stones found on the beach to leaves found in the rain forests. “She pays an incredible amount of attention to detail and was thrilled at the prospect of illustrating a short story,” Nettie said. No surprise then that Freya submitted three pencil drawings – the most submissions of any registered artist.
Two were for Zuri Holder’s The Scary Night, one in particular impressing with itsattention to detail and the way it captured the atmosphere of the story:

Congrats to both Hudle and Freya. The art pictured here – as well as other submitted art have also been posted with the stories they’re designed to complement.

COPYRIGHT INFORMATION & TERMS OF USE
Copyright of the winning Wadadli Pen stories and/or art work featured on this site belongs to the creators of the individual works and are used here purely for promotional and educational purposes. Other blog content, except otherwise noted, is created and/or maintained by Joanne C. Hillhouse. Site content should not be copied, distributed, transmitted, used for commercial purposes, altered, transformed, or built upon without the consent of the copyright holders.

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