The Stories & Poems of Edgar Allan Poe
In October 2011, the Library hosted The Big Read Edgar Allan Poe Short Story Contest for teens and adults. For the teen contest, "The Mysterious Case of Mr. Casslowe," was awarded third place. This story has many strengths. It uses interesting language and description that are similar to Poe's short stories. The second place winner, "The man looked around..." has many strengths and is well-written. It is evocative of Poe's dark and terrifying style. The first place winning entry, "The lament..." is the most well-rounded story and is especially reminiscent of Poe's style. It has good pacing and creates tension as the story progresses.
For the adult contest, the entries showed imagination, a love of words and writing, and an appreciation for the work of Edgar Allan Poe. A few were right behind the three chosen by the judges for the top spots, and those three were very close in ranking. "The Haunted Heart," in third place, exhibits wit and a sense of playfulness in its modern riff on Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart." "Pity," in second place, draws inspiration from "the lost Lenore" in Poe’s poetry and shows the story author's skill with poetry as well as prose. The untitled entry that begins "Lucy's routine felt off" was chosen for the top spot because it displays a strong use of everyday detail to set its scene and build tension and a sense of foreboding, telling a complete and scary tale.
Take a moment to read these Poe inspired stories. Congratulations, winners!
The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment
for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest.