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CU students honored with creative writing awards

The English program of the Cameron University Department of Communication, English and Foreign Languages recently honored several CU students for their creative writing this semester.

Gina Welborn, Lawton, won first place in the Leigh Holmes Prize for Creative Nonfiction for an essay titled “The Importance of Being Honest.” Courtney McEunn, Lawton, won second place and earned an honorable mention for her essay “War Zone.” Cameron English faculty members Dr. William Carney, Leah Chaffins, Dr. John Hodgson and Dr. John G. Morris judged submissions for the annual contest.

Joey Brown, Professor of English at Missouri Southern University and a 1992 Cameron University alumna, served as the judge for the John G. Morris Poetry Prize competition. Sophia Montoya, Apache, took top honors for the poem “A Good Book.” Rosemarie Billings, Lawton, took second place with her poem “Fireflies,” and Ryn Swinson, Duncan, won third place for her poem, “Acquaintances.” Thomas Anthony Juarez, Sterling, was judged first honorable mention for his poem “Kaleidoscope,” and McEunn received second honorable mention for her poem, “Sour.”

Both annual contests are open to all Cameron undergraduate students. Longtime faculty member Dr. Leigh Holmes established the Leigh Holmes Prize for Creative Nonfiction shortly before his retirement in 2003 to encourage Cameron students to write creative nonfiction well. Dr. John Morris, a professor of English, established the John G. Morris Poetry Prize in 2006 to honor his mother, the late Marian Cary Miles Morris-Zepp.

“The Importance of Being Honest” and “A Good Book” will be published in “The Gold Mine,” Cameron’s literary arts magazine. In addition, program faculty nominated McEunn’s essay, Billings’ poem and an excerpt from McEunn’s novel “Small Town Hell” for the Associated Writers and Writing Program Intro series competition. Winners of that national competition will be published in three national literary journals.



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