There was an intense humming of a drum roll as the entire Upper School gathered in the chapel to witness the third annual Echoes writing contest winners accept their awards and read excerpts aloud. Echoes, the “brain-child” of Estelle B., Class of 2011, was invented with the purpose of encouraging students to pursue passions in reading and writing. The constructive criticism of the qualified judges is another perk if the public recognition and class extra credit isn’t enough motivation. The contest focused on three main groups: poetry, nonfiction and fiction. This year, Echoes added the “Fresh Voice” award, given to highlight and celebrate freshman contestants.
It’s not an easy process. The hurdle that has stumped many applicants is the fact that they must read aloud a part of their piece. One winner whom I spoke to wrote about how the difficulty of presenting the work made the experience somewhat undesirable. It’s nerve wracking to have to share your personal writing with the entire Upper School student body. However, I think the winners would agree that the experience was well worth it.
This year, there were over a hundred pieces submitted. For those of you who have not entered the contest in the past, it is highly recommended by students and faculty alike. If that is not enough motivation, there are also gift cards involved! We’re glad to see EchOES has established itself as an annual celebrated literary event at OES.