Two UT Dallas students have won top prizes in the Texas Association of Creative Writing Teachers (TACWT) Student Competition.

Betty WiesepapeDr. Betty Wiesepape

Sara Keeth, a student enrolled in Dr. Betty Wiesepape’s creative nonfiction class, took first place in the graduate creative non-fiction competition. Michael J. Kaufman, a student in Dr. Matt Bondurant’s creative writing fiction class, took third in the undergraduate fiction category.

Matthew BondurantDr. Matt Bondurant

“Michael demonstrated an ability to enter strange, exotic worlds and tell compelling stories with an ease and authority that bely his experience, an unusual thing for an undergraduate.  He has talent, work ethic, and most importantly a love for language, all the ingredients of a successful writer,” said Dr. Bondurant.

This is not the first year that creative writers at UT Dallas have done well in the TACWT competition, however. In 2010, UT Dallas students took first place in the graduate and undergraduate fiction categories, and third place in  undergraduate fiction and undergraduate poetry.

Dr. Clay ReynoldsDr. Clay Reynolds

“The number of times UT Dallas students have placed as finalists or won the poetry and fiction and nonfiction competitions held annually by the TACWT is eloquent testimony to both the dedication of our creative writing faculty and the serious work being done by our students. Congratulations to all the winners and to those whose work was selected as finalists for these highly competitive awards,” said Dr. Clay Reynolds, director of the creative writing program

Winners of the annual competition were invited to attend the annual TACWT conference Sept. 22-24 in Austin.  First-place winners received small cash prizes and were invited to read their work.

The competition is open to all TACWT members’ students who have been enrolled in courses during the summer, spring or fall terms preceding the competition deadline. Faculty members select students’ work and sponsor their entries in the competition.

Full story available from the UT Dallas News Center.