Hybrid Poetry Book Contest 2020


In 2016 TL Sanders performed a poem we later named “Paper Poet” at Paper Birch Landing Art Gallery’s third ever art opening in honor of visiting National Poet Laureate at the time, Juan Felipe Herrera. When he became the 2019 Poet in Residence little did we know that his amazing performance style and his stunning poetry would evolve into a poetic screen play and an award-winning one man show at Fringe Fest KC with more evolutions in the works including the launch of our new press.

We would like to offer another poet the opportunity to have a full-length collection. Maybe that is you. Would you like to have a full poetry collection published by a traditional publisher? Do you have a full collection of work, something bigger than a chapbook? Something with a cohesive theme, a narrative bent, and a hybrid aspect—art, photography, form, typography, something… “new?” Enter now through Submittable.

Our second annual “Paper Poet in Residence” will be juried by award-winning 2019 poet in residence, Poet T.L Sanders. Poet T.L. Sanders, AKA Àtwist – The Language Artist, is a modern-day renaissance man who lives to build minds and loves to body build. He speaks French. He plays bass. He is a cage fighting martial artist. He educates. Give him a stage, he articulates. Lend him an ear, he motivates. As a National Writing Project Teacher Consultant, a current curriculum director, and former elementary, middle, and high school English teacher, Sanders embraces the value of our shared stories. Whether he is public speaking, teaching, writing or breathing, he has a passion for empowering people.

The 2020 poet in residence will be chosen before National Poetry Month, April 2020. The winning poet will work on one full-length collection with an editor –to be published in time for Fountainverse Poetry Festival in Kansas City, October 2020. Winner must agree to read for at least one open mic at the 2020 event in KC.

Winners of this poetry in residence will receive a $100 for travel expenses and 10 copies of their book. This book will be published in both softcover and eBook editions.

Guidelines for each Entry: Include your bio (and any website or author page link in the letter portion of your submission along with a summary of your submitted collection). All work must be original and submitted by the author.
Selection Committee: Poetry Collections by one author will be evaluated on how they fit the theme of “new” as well as creativity, risk, & craftmanship as a hybrid poetry book. No name or other identifying info must be included in your submission manuscript text so that your work is read by our judges anonymously.

Length: approximately 60 to 100 book size pages (60 traditional length poems)

How many poetry collections can I submit? You may submit one manuscript per entry. Each manuscript MUST have page numbers and a table of contents with active links.

Paper Poet by Poet T.L. Sanders

I want to be a writer

This piece of art – Language Art – is for all of us
From the famous to the infamous
devoted to go their hardest
It is my kiss blew
to you who ever wrote, glued, or drew
emotional emojis
overflow overflows oxytocin birthing birth -An ocean
of Extra Strength
Ibuprofen dopamine doctor’s notes
I mean
Doctors’ notes
Love Doctor’s
Sticky notes and
Messages in
Broken bottles
Bottles Broke
in boats
that cried . . . salt water rivers from which we
float or Fall
Fly or fling
Far stars being our guides
The rise of Jedi master’s
mind tricks
Limbic System
Neo, Morpheus, Oracle, and Switch
Red pill Blue pill Trinity you pick

You choose
to mix the two blended: purple pill
knowledge plus bliss
fully brilliant minus ignorance
take away hindrance nicknamed Agent Smith

Agent Smith,
silly rabbit
Mais Tricks
Are for kids…GOATS
get the gist
Greatest. Of All. Time:

For all of time,
I hope you know your poems, pictures, paintings, and photos
were the consoling strongholds
healing cracking parts and broken hearts of the hopeless.

In exchange for pain your word
less writings are inciting peaceful rioting
widening true meanings of what hope is
quote this
from my boldest piece on golden canvas
for the Beethovens interwoven with the writers


You can
paint framed pictures
without cans of paint or picture frames

My camera aims toward the trap singing,
tap dancing,
archiTech N9ne-type writers who weld . . .
Weld wild things wilder than the wildest dreams

talking to you
writers who
forge. . .
Forge forks in the road to allow the not yet writer alternate routes without . . . Knives
Cutting them off
putting words in their mouths

To the painter whose purpose is out
fate’s great adventure
Determined to add
venture past the signs that say
and pounce on the path unpaved
Revising the road’s name from, “Not Taken” to Shakespeare’s Lane, saying “All the world’s a stage.”

I want to remain
that writer

A poet who performs off script
Freestyling on topic
To the point that he has polished
Each piece
Like Beyoncé be
each beat
she and Jay-Z
DJ Jazzy Jeff Fresh
Princess, Destiny’s Child I snap

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