Sheridan professor makes CBC Poetry Prize longlist


Published November 17, 2021 at 10:07 am

Alexander Hollenberg, Professor of Storytelling and Narrativity in Sheridan College's School of Humanities and Creativity, was named to CBC's national Poetry Prize Longlist. SHERIDAN PHOTO

Sheridan College professor Alexander Hollenberg has reeled in a place on CBC’s prestigious national Poetry Prize Longlist.

The professor of Storytelling and Narrativity in Sheridan’s School of Humanities and Creativity was recognized for his work called Cod Jigging Near Twillingate.

The inspiration for Hollenberg’s longlisted poem comes from a particularly meaningful cod jigging excursion that he and his partner experienced on their honeymoon.

Cod jigging refers to fishing for cod, using a piece of fishing line in place of a fishing rod.

“I’m humbled to be counted among a group of supremely talented poets from across the country,” said Hollenberg, who is one of 31 writers to make the list out of 3,000 entries. “The longlist is a testament to the vibrancy of Canadian poetry and the hard work of crafting imagination into words.

“Moreover, just to have my poems read by this year’s judges – Louise Bernice Halfe, Canisia Lubrin and Steve Heighton – is a sincere honour. They are inspiring artists, each of them.”

Open to the public, the CBC Literary Prizes recognize and celebrate excellence in contemporary writing. The longlist was determined by a team of readers from across the country who read the entries.

Hollenberg, known for his warmth and enthusiasm as a colleague and professor, brings a critical and sensitive intellectual rigour to his teaching, writing, and to his poetry.

“Sharing your art with the world requires the courage to be vulnerable. It’s like taking a piece of your heart out and putting it on show,” said Stephanie Samboo, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (FHASS). “I am so proud and thrilled that Alex decided to do just that. “Along with my colleagues in FHASS, we celebrate with Alex this wonderful recognition of his work.”

The shortlist will be announced on November 18, and the winner will be announced on November 24.

The winner will receive a $6,000 prize from the Canada Council for the Arts, have their work published on CBC Books and will have the chance to attend a two-week writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts an Creativity.

The four finalists will each receive $1,000 and have their work published on CBC Books.

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