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Virginia Member Takes Top Prize in Nota Bene

Virginia Member Takes Top Prize in Nota Bene

Mark Chevalier has always loved writing, but he didn’t take it seriously until he finished his first novel in 2007.

He also writes short stories and poetry, and it was one of the latter that earned him the Ewing Citation Award for the most outstanding submission to the 2016 Nota Bene literary competition and a $1,000 scholarship.

The Ewing Citation Award is named in honor of Nell Ewing, a long-time Phi Theta Kappa staff member who was a driving force behind Nota Bene. She retired in 2012 after serving 26 years with the organization.

“My main reason (for submitting to Nota Bene) is because I love poetry, and I wanted to share my love of the craft,” he said. “I also wanted to see if I have what it takes to be read in the community — did I have the proverbial chops? PTK gave me the opportunity to explore those boundaries.”

Chevalier attends Blue Ridge Community College in Virginia. His poem, “The Lie,” beat out more than 600 entries to take the top award. Another of his poems, “Who Knew,” will also be published in the 2016 issue.

“I am in love with language and how we use it to describe and feel the world around us,” he said.

Four other submissions were also singled out as outstanding, and those authors will each receive a Reynolds Award of $500. This award is endowed by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation and honors the memory of the late Donald W. Reynolds, founder of the Donrey Media Group.

Reynolds Award recipients are

  • Zariah Hedge of San Jacinto College’s North Campus in Texas for her poem “Stationary”
  • Jena Picard of Palm Beach State College in Florida for her short story “The Devil Came to Pray”
  • Kimberly Smith of Wenatchee Valley College in Washington for her essay “Finale and Encore”
  • Jonathan Zelaya of Palm Beach State College in Florida for his short story “American Dream Bound”

Other works being published in the 2016 issue of Nota Bene:

Research Papers
“Income Inequality” by Nora Sheskey of Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College in Kentucky
“Aquaculture” by Hadassha Tofilau of American Samoa Community College in American Samoa
“The Oil Producer’s Dilemma” by Kevin Baisden of Northern Virginia Community College in Virginia
“The New Lynching” by Kevin Baisden of Northern Virginia Community College in Virginia

Essays
“The Creative Medicine” by Abby Jewett of Riverland Community College in Minnesota
“Maid Trade” by Jennifer Peterson of Cañada College in California
“Guilt in ‘The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas’ ” by Alexandra Borsdorf of Perimeter College at Georgia State University in Georgia
“Girl Whose Brother has Regressive Autism” by Michelle Jones of Zane State College in Ohio
“Meditation on Motherhood” by AnnMarie Vanek of Cuyahoga Community College in Ohio
“Little Girl” by Sarakrystin Simon of Pikes Peak Community College in Colorado
“The Metaphors They Carry” by Melissa May Marsh of MiraCosta College in California

Short Stories
“A Fearful Hero” by Nicole McGee of Amarillo College in Texas
“The Color of Hearts” by Cassia Rose of Northeast Texas Community College in Texas
“The Piano on 54th Street” by Caroline France of Greenville Technical College in South Carolina

Poems
“Who Knew” by Mark Chevalier of Blue Ridge Community College in Virginia
“Newton’s Cradle” by Zariah Hedge of San Jacinto College’s North Campus in Texas
“Waiting Room” by Nicole McDonald of Harold Washington College in Illinois
“Night One” by Janie Ensor of Metropolitan Community College in Nebraska
“Lust” by Jessica Rigby of Clinton Community College in New York
“A Blessing” by Luisa Black of Tidewater Community College in Virginia
“I’ll Die a Child” by Bailey McManus of Columbia Gorge Community College in Oregon

All chapter advisors will receive two copies of the printed 2016 Nota Bene issue.

We are now accepting entries for the 2017 Nota Bene literary competition. The deadline to enter is April 28, 2017. See full rules and upload your entry.



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