Poetry Workshops & Contest for Teens | Los Angeles Public Library
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Poetry Workshops & Contest for Teens


We invite teen poets and spoken word artists to participate in free poetry workshops during April, National Poetry Month. Discover how to take your poetry to the next level and learn more about the Los Angeles Youth Poet Laureate Contest, which offers the chance to win a book deal.

Julia Horwitz,  Los Angeles Youth Poet Laureate 2016Julia Horwitz, Los Angeles Youth Poet Laureate 2015/2016

My light doesn’t expose an absence of yours,
your light doesn’t expose an absence of mine,
all of this light isn’t about to go out against the wind
because we are monuments against the wind.

                                                       — Julia Horwitz

Will YOU be LA's 2016 Youth Poet Laureate? 

During National Poetry Month, Urban Word LA will accept submissions from young poets ages 14-19 who are interested in representing Los Angeles as LA Youth Poet Laureate.

A group of judges will choose 12 finalists, who will all earn the title of LA Poet Ambassador. One teen will be selected as LA Youth Poet Laureate at the Poet Laureate Commencement performance on Sunday, June 4th at the Central Library. The winning poet will conduct a library tour and win a book deal from Penmanship Books.

To qualify, you must be 14-19 years old and a current resident of Los Angeles County. Applications are due May 6, 2016. Visit urbanword.org to learn more.

Poetry Workshops

Part I: A teen poetry writing workshop, which includes a performance by a Youth Poet Ambassador.

Part II: A poetry portfolio and resume building workshop, with instruction on entering the Los Angeles Youth Poet Laureate Contest for those who are interested.

Memorial Branch
Part I: April 11 • 4:00 p.m.
Part II: April 25 • 4:00 p.m.

Vernon Branch
Part IApril 14 • 5:00 p.m.
Part IIApril 28 • 5:00 p.m.

Hyde Park Branch
Part I: April 16 • 11:00 a.m.
Part II: April 23 • 1:00 p.m.

Pacoima Branch
Part I: April 16 • 12:00 noon
Part II: April 19 • 4:00 p.m.

Chatsworth Branch
Part IApril 21 • 4:00 p.m.
Part IIApril 23 • 1:00 p.m.

El Sereno Branch
Part IApril 23 • 3:00 p.m.
Part IIApril 30 • 3:00 p.m.