Contests

Excerpts from past CNFC contest winners

2018 winner: “Descent into Darkness,” by Nancy O’Rourke Machetes. The weapons of choice. Crude weapons, many of them with blades stained dark by the blood of victims. Machetes used viciously in the streets, in markets, schools, and churches. Machetes used to maim and slaughter men, women and children. Machetes used by farmers, shop owners, teachers, and priests. Machetes used to kill strangers, neighbours and sometimes family members. * I’d only been reunited with the children of Kimihurura for two weeks.…

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Announcing the 2019 CNFC/Humber Literary Review Creative Nonfiction Contest

The Humber Literary Review and the Creative Nonfiction Collective Society (CNFC) have joined forces to bring you a Canada-wide creative nonfiction contest. CONTEST CLOSES February 14, 2019 at MIDNIGHT EST. Winners will be announced in June 2019 at the annual CNFC conference in Vancouver, BC. First prize includes payment of $750 and publication in The Humber Literary Review.  WHAT: Original previously unpublished creative nonfiction – maximum word length 3,000 words (no minimum). Literary journalism, memoir, the personal or lyric essay—all are welcome. WHO: The competition is open to Canadian citizens and permanent residents…

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AND THE 2018 CNFC/CARTE BLANCHE CONTEST WINNER IS…

“Descent into Darkness,” by Nancy O’Rourke. Congratulations to Nancy and to both our runners-up, Emily Kellogg and Julie Paul. The winning piece is now published in the current edition of carte blanche . Experienced sociologist Nancy O’Rourke’s creative nonfiction was recently recognized by Memoir Magazine. “Descent into Darkness” is adapted from a memoir-in-progress that examines processes of forgiveness, focusing on a group of children she befriended in Rwanda in 1992, lost during the genocide, and found 18 years later.  

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CNF tip of the day: lyric essay

Lyric Essay A lyric essay uses the techniques of poetry, including compression, sound play, white space, formal innovation, non-linear narrative, and juxtaposition to explore an idea or an experience in the writer’s life. Lyric essays may be structured as collage or mosaic, as braided or woven narratives, as “flash” snapshots, or wedged within the carapace of other forms such as instruction manuals, rejection letters, lists, or maps, and they may also make use of images. They often rely on research…

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CNF tip of the day: memoir

Memoir A memoir is an attempt to make artful sense of some aspect or period of the author’s life. The facts may be unusual or traumatic, or they may be ordinary and unremarkable. “What happened” is less important in memoir than the clarity, grace, or originality of the writer’s style and the honest pursuit of self-knowledge. As V.S. Pritchett said, “It’s all in the art. You get no credit for living.” A few examples Joan Didion: “Goodbye to All That.”…

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