Will you be the first Clallam County Poet Laureate?
Clallam County and the North Olympic Library System are excited to announce an opportunity to become the first Clallam County Poet Laureate. Poets ages 18 and over who reside in Clallam County and have a passion for bringing poetry to their community are invited to apply for the inaugural position.
Applications are now closed. The submission deadline was December 4.
Thanks to everyone who applied! The selection committee will read and score applications and interview finalists, December through February. The Poet Laureate will be selected by March 2023.
The selected Poet Laureate will serve a two-year term, bringing poetry to residents of the county by participating in events, leading workshops, and championing the community power of the written and spoken word. The term will begin in April 2023 and run through March 2025.
This position comes with an annual stipend of $5,000 ($10,000 total), funded by Clallam County, in recognition of the appointed poet’s time and energy in participating in or hosting events as well as to support the poet’s craft and practice. The Poet Laureate will be expected to participate in or host approximately two events per month during their term at locations throughout Clallam County.
A major goal of the Clallam County Poet Laureate program is to use poetry to bring a variety of voices and perspectives to culturally diverse audiences throughout the county, and to bring communities together through poetry. Poetry helps us to see, understand and think about our community and our world through a different lens and challenges us to reconsider the common ties that bind us together.
Applications will be submitted online through a web form posted from October 17-December 4. All components of the application marked with an asterisk (*) are required. You will be able to attach documents in .docx, .doc, .pages or .pdf formats to your application via the web form. Submissions opened on October 17. The submission deadline has been extended through December 4.
No, you do not need to have a published book or individual poems in print or online, although past publication may speak to your engagement with the greater poetry community and illustrate why you are best suited for this position.
The Clallam County Poet Laureate will collaborate with county organizations to bring poetry to regular community events, lead workshops, and generally use the power of poetry to connect with people all across the county! They will work closely with the County as well as with the North Olympic Library System (NOLS) to identify ways that they can reach out across Clallam County and get involved, using their personal strengths as an artist as a guide. The Poet Laureate may read a poem to kick-off events, lead a workshop during National Poetry Month, or give a reading as a featured poet at local organizations, celebrations, or businesses.
Two events per month is a guiding benchmark, but not a hard rule, for what the Poet Laureate can expect as a monthly workload. The Poet Laureate will have support from NOLS, if desired, when hosting events. Events may be as simple as reading poems at a farmers market or as large as designing and hosting a new reading series to highlight poets in Clallam County. Poets who are already involved in community work—such as volunteering as a teaching artist in elementary schools, leading workshops or craft discussions that are open to all, etc.—can be assured that this involvement “counts” toward what is expected of this position.
Poet Laureates also write, which NOLS recognizes takes time and care. NOLS will work with the chosen poet to make sure they are able to serve the Clallam County community in this position while still having time for their craft and other obligations.
The Clallam County Poet Laureate will serve a two-year term from April 2023 through March 2025.
The Clallam County Poet Laureate will receive an annual stipend of $5,000 ($10,000 total), funded by Clallam County, in recognition of their community work in this position as well as to support their writing practice.
No; due to the detail required in many of the questions on the application, and the time and creative commitment of this position, nominations are not accepted. Poets should apply for this position themselves.
If you know someone who you think is a good fit, please share information about the position with them and encourage them to apply.
The selection committee is made up of community members who are involved in the arts or who are writers themselves in Clallam County. The selection committee will read and score applications and interview finalists before making their selection for Poet Laureate.
No. We will be getting to know the poets who apply for this position as we read submissions, and we believe that your identity is important—your name is a part of who you are and we want to read your work in the cultural context of which it is a part.
At this time, we can only read submissions—including samples of creative work—in English. The Poet Laureate will be expected to conduct community presentations and/or workshops in English, with the opportunity to present in additional languages depending on their language skills and interest.