2007-04-20 / Community

Student Writers Vie At Literary Festival Sunday

Could there be a young Pulitzer Prize-winning author in our midst?

Eighty-one students from public and parochial schools throughout the peninsula will find out if they have what it takes to pursue a literary career at the first-ever Literary Arts Festival on Sunday, April 22. The Rockaway Music and Arts Council-sponsored event will encompass the Rockaway Artists Alliance T6 and T7 galleries and The Rockaway Theatre Company's Post Theater from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

A prominent component of the festival will be the school-based writing competition, organized by Myra Berger, Berniece Meyers and writing competition sub-committee chairperson Rosemary Curley. The contest offers entrants who have submitted their work in a myriad of genres, including short fiction, short non-fiction (memoirs, narrative), poetry and short plays the unique opportunity to have their work critiqued by three accomplished authors from the literary world.

They are Jill Eisenstadt, a former Rockaway resident and novelist/journalist who graduated from PS 114, MS 180 and Beach Channel High School; Michael Drinkard, a novelist; and Neil Gordon, a novelist and dean of the writing program at The New School's Eugene Lang College.

Three winners will be announced at an awards ceremony which will be held in the T7 Gallery at 4:30 p.m. Winners will receive a free one year subscription to Writers Digest Magazine, placement of their work in a soon to be published RMAC Anthology, as well as publishing packages from iUniverse and Xlibris.

The entrant's names are:

Beach Channel High School

Poetry (Grades 11-12): Chris Baierlein, Arana Jaipersaud, Kharissa Kenner, Riana Sherwood, Alexandra Taveras.

Short Fiction: Chris Baierlein. Short Fiction: (Grades 7-8) Celine Anderson, Susan Geevarghese.

Far Rockaway High School

Short Fiction (Grades 11-12): Robert Kitt Jr.

Poetry (Grades 11-12): Arabia Dodson, Debinka Worrell.

St. Frances de Sales School

Short Fiction (Grades 5-6): Stephanie Hanna, Jennie O'Hara, Jillian Spataro, Mackenzie Thompson.

Short Fiction (Grades 7-8): Nicholas Compagnone, Caitlin Flanigan, Deidre Munday.

Poetry (Grades 5-6): John Barea, Cynthia Henderson, Jenna Hoffman, Tara Muoio, Patrick Sullivan.

Poetry (Grades 7-8): Megan Dunn, Kristin Ferrandino, Grace McCaffrey.

St. Rose of Lima School

Short Fiction (Grades 7-8): Steven Resch.

Short Fiction (Grades 5-6): Francesca Caruso, Michael Costa, Sabrine Fortuna-Hazel, Michaela Modica, Agata Ozga-Wiejno, Sandra Sliwowski.

Personal Essay (Grades 5-6): Theresa Kavasansky, Thomas Ormsby.

Personal Essay (Grades 7-8): Kathryn Quattruccio, Shana Querrard. Poetry (Grades 7-8): Marissa Morales, Jamie Siller.

Stella Maris High School

Short Fiction (Grades 9-10): Alana Macron, Samantha Mendez.

Personal Essay (Grades 11-12): Y Ho, Rupinder Kaur.

Poetry (Grades 9-10): Meghan Dengler, Samantha Inesti.

Poetry (Grades 11-12): Adetola Adegbite, Rendy Auguste, Danni Marie Fitzgerald, Jennifer Furno, Kathleen Haggerty, Tara Iannotti, Rita Regan.

Festival organizer Stuart Mirsky encourages all students to attend and to bring their families and friends.

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