It’s time for a new feature at Little Laos on the Prairie!
Thanks to our friends at Snake Bomb Coffee, just in time for Year of the Snake we can begin a monthly series of writing contests. The winner, chosen by our editors, receives a certificate of recognition and a sample package of Snake Bomb Coffee imported from Laos!
Since it’s February, we’ve chosen the theme of “New Ideas of Lao American Beauty.”
As you see in this picture from a 1972 Lao-English dictionary, the Lao traditionally have many different words for different types of beauty, from simply ‘pretty’ to ‘surface beauty, which does not go below the surface,’ to the more surprisingly precise ‘beauty characterized by an egg-shaped face having the color of cooked egg-white.’
So, our challenge is simple this month. We’re looking for the best poem (under 3 pages, please), personal essay, short story, creative non-fiction, etc. (750 words or less) that comes up with interesting new ideas for Lao Americans to consider beautiful. Whether it’s thinking about the old standards or devising new ones, we want to hear about them!
Entries should be sent in the body of an e-mail, (No attachments, please). Laoglish is fine, obviously. We get one-time publishing rights for accepted pieces after which all publishing rights revert back to you!
We are interested in multicultural, multilingual work that brings forward emerging voices, especially from perspectives often underrepresented in existing literature. Work that considers race, gender, sexuality, identity and/or disability issues is welcome. We have no style limitations this time, although shorter works preferred. Submissions should be previously unpublished.
Send your best pieces to Laoartisans@gmail.com by February 28th and we’ll announce the winner in March!
Good luck and let us know if you have any questions!