Shoynear Morrison
A&E Reporter

Whether it’s the best of times, or a dark and stormy  night, the Student Literary Competition offers students the opportunity to showcase their creative talents.

“The competition is a chance for students to write a short story, poetry or fiction to be judged at the Humber level,” according to Carol Bueglas, English secretary for the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Humber.

Contestants placing first at Humber will then go on to the regionals where they will be judged against students from the United States, said Bueglas.

The annual competition is organized by the League for Innovation in the Community College based in Arizona and is open to community colleges around North America.

After being encouraged by his media studies teacher Eva Bednar, third-year Humber paralegal student, Shang-Lun Ko, 27, competed in last year’s literary competition. Ko placed first for his essay, “The Pink Star.”

“I wrote my story within a week but procrastinated in handing it in. I didn’t write it to win, I just wrote it for myself and to get my story off my chest,” he said.

Joel West, 52, a Humber comedy writing student, placed second in the fiction category with a short story called Jeremy. He said he was encouraged by others to participate in the contest.

“I always felt that I had talent,” he said. “I spent time working on my story and with the encouragement of others I entered Jeremy.”

Past contestants urge aspiring writers to enter the Literary Competition.

“I absolutely do recommend the competition to anyone who has a story that they want to tell,” said West. “The absolute worst thing that will happen is that you remain who you are. The best is that you could win.”

He also said the competition provides a feeling of accomplishment.

“I was honored to have been chosen by the judges. It let me know what I had always believed, that I had talent in telling stories,” said West.

Prize money for winners of the national competition will be disbursed to each category. First place will receive $500, second place $200 and third place $100, the competition poster states.

Contestants have until April 4 to enter their literary work. All entries must be signed and approved by a member of faculty, states the competition poster.