Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Book Spine Poetry Contest!

August feels like a good time for a contest, right? We’ve decided to try a new twist on our usual bookpiles contest: book spine poetry (here’s a previous example, from our 2007 “downpile” contest).

We’ve thrilled to announce that we’ve arranged for a special guest judge to help us pick the winners of this contest: Nina Katchadourian, who’s been working in this field since 1993 with her Sorted Books project (credited with inspiring many subsequent projects of this type). In 2013 Chronicle Books will be publishing a book of Nina’s works, so look forward to that!

How to participate:

1. Create a poem using book spines. The poem can incorporate any element of the spine you like (color, text, whatever). Theme/length/format is entirely up to you (bonus points if it’s about books, reading, or LibraryThing, though!). If you need some inspiration, there are some great examples here, or here (the latter are the works of our guest judge).

2. Take some photos of your poem.

3. Upload the photo to your LT member gallery. Sign in, then go here and click the “Add another picture” link to add the image.*

4. When adding the image, tag it “SpinePoetry2012”. This will add your image to the contest gallery, and counts as your entry into the contest. If your photo doesn’t have the tag, we won’t know that you’ve entered. You’ll be able to see all the entries here.

5. Tell us about it in the “Title/description” box. You can include a list of the books you used, a transcription of the poem if you want, any explanation, &c.

Deadline: Add your photos by 4 p.m. EDT on Friday, September 7.

What we’ll do:

Based on all the images in the “SpinePoetry2012” photo gallery, guest judge Nina Katchadourian and LibraryThing staff will choose the following winners:

Grand Prize (1)

  • An LT t-shirt (size/color of your choice)
  • An LT library stamp
  • A CueCat
  • An LT sticker
  • Three lifetime gift memberships
  • Great honor

Runners Up (2)

  • Your choice of one LT t-shirt, stamp, or CueCat
  • Two lifetime gift memberships

We may also pick a few Honorable Mentions—final number will depend on the number of entries received—and they’ll receive a lifetime gift membership.

Have fun!

Fine Print: You can enter as many times as you like, but you can only win one prize. By entering the contest you certify your images and the poems are your own creations. All decisions as to winners will be made by LibraryThing staff and our guest judge, and our decisions are final. LibraryThing staff and family can enter, but can only be honored as prize-less runners-up. Any images you load stay yours, or you can release them under a copyleft license, but we get a standard “non-exclusive, perpetual” right to use them.

Questions? Feel free to post questions/discussion/etc. here.

Labels: book pile, contest, contests


  1. Meredith says:

    I had so much fun working out poems with my books today. If I ever write a book though, I’m giving it a title with verbs!

  2. Kyle M. says:

    I used to play a game similar to this when I worked in the county library. It made shelving quite a bit of fun.

  3. Katja says:

    Spot on, Meredith! 🙂

  4. Jill Huston says:

    I read the note that said to insert a to define the line length in the Spine Poetry title box. Tried to do it, could not figure it out. Poetry depends a great deal on how the lines are defined. Is there any better description on how to do this?

  5. Jill Huston says:

    Thanks. I finally realized that one doesn’t use an “insert” function, but actually types in the characters ‘less than’, the letters ‘br’ and the ‘ greater than’ and the text reader will interpret them.

    Still learning. Jill

  6. Boobalack says:

    I can’t enter these contests because (gasp!) I don’t have a digital camera. My cheap little cell phone will take pics but there is no software with it to put on computer. I messaged a few to my daughter, she e-mailed them to me, I downloaded to my pictures, but they’re too blurry. I guess something gets lost along the way because, as small as my screen is, I could read most of the words on the spines. Is there no other way to enter the contest?

  7. Boobalack says:

    Thanks, Jeremy. We just thought of that but found that we can’t get the film developed in time. Sigh. Maybe I’ll just use a blurry pic. lol

  8. Boobalack says:

    Okie Dokie. I used a blurry pic. Well, nobody ever said it had to be a good one! Couldn’t get the break thing to work so had to use /. It worked when I used it on my photo but was lost somewhere between there and the contest page. Gremlins!

  9. DangerousBeans says:

    Ahh! Pity upload fail kept me from participating – perhaps next year, then. 🙂

  10. Shuffy2 says:

    Sad, I uploaded mine in time and it does not appear at all. I tagged it and everything, something failed 🙁 I know it is too late to win but wish it had made the gallery at least.

  11. Thanks. I finally realized that one doesn’t use an “insert” function, but actually types in the characters ‘less than’, the letters ‘br’ and the ‘ greater than’ and the text reader will interpret them.

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