Drop by Drop: Poetry for Children Competition

Poets XYZ, a trio consisting of Melinda Syzmanik, Elena de Roo, and Kathryn Dove, are excited to announce the launch of ‘Drop by Drop,’ a new competition for adult writers of poetry for children. A vastly under-supported sector of children’s writing, the competition is funded by this year’s National Poetry Day. Check out the details below!

A new nationwide competition for adults who write poetry for children has been launched in the lead-up to Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day in August.

‘Drop by Drop’ runs between June 30th and 4th August and will be judged by renowned children’s writer and poet, Bill Nagelkerke. Entry is free and is open to anyone in New Zealand aged 18 years and over. The prize for the winning poem is $50. Up to three poems can be submitted on the theme of ‘water’—to be interpreted as widely and wildly as entrants like. Poems should be aimed at 5–12-year-olds. For further information visit the Poets XYZ Facebook page or email thepoetsxyz@gmail.com.

The winner will be announced on Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day on Friday 25th August.

The competition is organised by the Poets XYZ, a trio of New Zealand children’s writers. Elena de Roo, Kathryn Dove, and Melinda Szymanik are keen to see poetry for children flourish in Aotearoa New Zealand and to develop a network of children’s poets.

Melinda Szymanik

Melinda Szymanik is an award-winning author of picture books, short stories and novels for children and young adults. She also writes poetry for adults and children, and regularly teaches creative writing. Recent titles include Lucy and the Dark (Puffin [Penguin RH], 2023) and Sun Shower (Scholastic, 2023).