Letters About Literature call for entries

The Center for the Book in the State Library of Louisiana, in partnership with the Louisiana Writing Project, announces that entries for Letters About Literature, a national reading-writing contest for students, are now being accepted by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.

To enter, fourth through 12th grade students should write personal letters to authors, living or dead, from any genre explaining how those authors’ work changed the students’ way of thinking about the world or themselves.

Finalists will be chosen by a panel of judges from throughout the state. The finalists’ entries will be submitted to the Library of Congress for the national competition.

Last year’s Letters About Literature contest resulted in 1,097 entries, up from 42 entries in 2008 before the State Library was a sponsor.

“We are so pleased with the increase in student participation in Letters About Literature since we became a sponsor two years ago. This particular program is an exceptional way for us to encourage our youth to read,” State Librarian Rebecca Hamilton said. “Because participation in the contest requires reflective reading, the contest emphasizes the personal rewards to be gained from the reading experience.”

Louisiana language arts teachers and home-school instructors along with school, public children and public young adult librarians are encouraged to visit the Letters About Literature website for more information and lessons plans, and to incorporate Letters About Literature into their curricula and programming.

Submissions must be sent directly to the national Letters About Literature address, which can be found by visiting the links www.state.lib.la.us/ or www.lettersaboutliterature.org.

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