A soon-to-be eighth grade student at Core Knowledge Charter School is set to become a published poet this autumn.

Back in February, then-seventh grader Bailey Hmielewski submitted a poem to the A Celebration of Poets competition for K-9 students and was selected to be one of the published poets in this October’s collection.

“At the suggestion of a friend who really liked it, I submitted my poem in late February,” Hmielewski told the Press. “I was inspired to write this poem by the amount of hate speech happening around us and the hurt I saw it causing.”

The contest was hosted by Utah-based Creative Communication.

“Creative Communication is devoted to the promotion of writing, teaching and appreciation of student writing,” its website states. “The intent of our student writing contests is to motivate student writers. The top entries are published in an anthology that will record the creative insights of today's student writers.”

Hmielewski will be featured in an anthology that includes around 45% of the poems that were submitted.

“I love creating in many forms – painting, music, writing poems, short stories, movie scripts with my brother and more,” Hmielewski said. “When writing, I often think of current events or issues in our world for inspiration. Some of my favorite poets are Emily Dickenson and Amanda Gorman.”

Creative Communication holds three contests annually in spring, summer, and autumn for students in United States public, private, or home schools, from which the top 45-55% of entries are selected to be published in one of three annual anthologies.

“For over 20 years, Creative Communication has helped to inspire and encourage student writers with our national writing contests,” its website states. “Our company founders come from a family of artists and educators. We believe that school writing programs are the largest motivator for young writers and that our contests and publications enhance your writing program curriculum. Our philosophy in judging entries is to be selective so that it is an honor to be published, but not so exclusive that it is discouraging to enter the contest.”

Poems could be 21 lines or less on any topic and written in any style. No entry fees or purchase were required to enter.

“It is our goal to help your student find their creative competition through expressing their thoughts and feelings with the power of writing,” the organization states on its website.

Reporter Neal Patten can be reached at npatten@wisconsinmediagroup.com

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