Frequently Asked Questions

1. Until when is entry open?
The competition is open from 1 August 2023 to 30 November 2023

2. In which language must my poem be written?
You may submit poems in any one of the 11 official South African languages. If your poem is not in English, an English translation of your poem would be appreciated, but is not compulsory.

3. What age must I be to enter?
Any person of any age may enter, but if you are under 18 years of age, your parent or guardian must acknowledge that they have read, understood and accepted the competition rules on your behalf. Accepting the competition rules will automatically form part of the submission process. For more information, go to the Competition rules section on this site.

4. What is the topic or theme?
Entrants should see the theme "I wish I'd said" as a guideline, not a rule. The poems, however, need not be about the death of a specific person, but can be any poem with an elegiac sense. Poems which celebrate life, or the brevity of human existence, etc., will also do. The guiding principle must be: Will a person experiencing loss be uplifted by the poem, or be able to identify with it?

5. To what guidelines must my poem conform?
To see what criteria your poem must meet, simply go to the Editorial guidelines section on this site.

6. What is the prize money?
A cash prize of R10 000 will be awarded for the best poem in each of the 11 language categories, at the discretion of the editors.

7. How many poems may I enter?
Each poet will be restricted to entering a maximum of 10 poems per annual competition. A counter underneath the poetry entry button on your dashboard will show you how many poems you can still enter. We also won’t accept complete manuscripts, or the same poem(s) translated and entered in more than one language category.

8. May I enter a poem that has been published elsewhere?
No. Your poem must be an original work, as defined in the South African Copyright Act 98 of 1978, and it must not have been published anywhere else, in any acceptable media or on any public platform. For more information, go to the Competition rules section on this site.

9. Will I receive feedback on the poem that I entered?
You will receive an official notification of entry via e-mail. Any feedback on a specific poem will be at the sole discretion of the editor.

10. When will the winners be announced?
The winners will be announced at the AVBOB Poetry Gala in the third quarter of 2024. The date of that announcement and the winners’ names will be published on AVBOB Poetry’s social media channels and on our blog: https://avbobpoetry.co.za/Blog/ViewAll

11. How will the winners be notified?
The winners will be contacted via any of the contact details provided during submission of their entries, and their details will be made available on the AVBOB Poetry Competition website after the AVBOB Poetry Gala in the third quarter of 2024.

12. What does it mean when my poem is accepted for publication?
If you receive notification that your poem is accepted for publication, it means that it will be published on AVBOB’s Poetry Competition website www.avbobpoetry.co.za.

In addition, it may be considered for publication alongside the work of renowned poets in a 100-poem anthology that will be published in 2024.

Should your poem be accepted for publication by AVBOB, you will be remunerated as follows: A usage fee to the value of R300 – transferred to the entrant via the Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) payment option presented online – for publication on the AVBOB Poetry Competition website, which includes the entrant’s consent to usage on other platforms and in other media.

NB: Payments of usage fees due to poets will pause over the holiday period – from 1 December 2023 to 5 January 2024 – and will resume on 8 January 2024.

For more information and full details on the usage rights of accepted poems, go to the Competition rules section on this site.

13. My banking details have changed, how can I update this for payments of poem usage fees?
You will always be able to update your banking details via your main profile page from your dashboard. NB: Please note that your previous details may still be used for payments which are already in process, so try not change any details midway through the competition. If you must, after doing so we recommend you send a separate contact request to the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team via the ‘Rewards and Payments’ drop-down menu on our Contact Us page advising them of this change. It may however be too late for payments in process as the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team may have already made your payment into the old account. If this is the case you will be responsible for correcting this error with your bank yourself. The AVBOB Poetry Payments Team can only make another payment to your new account if any money paid out to an incorrect account is returned to the AVBOB Poetry bank account.

14. How soon after I’ve been published can I expect to be paid?
Payments will be made within 4 to 6 weeks from the date that you have confirmed your Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) payment details for your poem that was published. After another 2 weeks you should see your proof of payment linked to your online profile. If you therefore do not have the money in your bank account or a proof of payment linked to your Poem on your online profile after a total of 8 weeks, please feel free to contact the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team to enquire (giving the details of your published poem as a reference) via the ‘Rewards and Payments’ drop-down menu on our Contact Us page.

15. What happens after I get paid? How will I know I’ve been paid?
You can review all your approved and published poems, as well as their payment statuses, under the ‘My notification panel’ option on your dashboard. Once processed, your proof of payment will be linked to your online profile (as described above).

16. How can I contact the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team about my payments?
You are welcome to contact the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team via the ‘Rewards and Payments’ drop-down menu on our Contact Us page. All the aforementioned queries will be escalated to the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team and a representative will contact you as soon as possible. Due to the volume of queries received allow a minimum of at least 72 hours for a response before resubmitting your query. Duplicate queries simply result in fewer poets receiving the answers to their issues, as the members of the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team spend their time to reconcile duplicated queries. Please also remember that the AVBOB Poetry Payments Team work standard business hours so queries submitted over a weekend will be addressed in order of receipt from Mondays to Fridays.

17. Proof of payment for usage fee reflecting on profile but no money in account yet?
Please remember that banks all operate on Interbank Transfer Rules – which means that they take some time to transfer the money into your account, depending on when the transaction was completed. Your proof of payment will contain a transaction date – please wait two or three days (if your transaction date falls on a weekend or public holiday) to allow the money to reflect in your account before contacting the AVBOB Poetry payments team.

Poem title: Namuntlha
Hi hlanganile hi mimoya yo basa, Hi hlangana hi timbilu ta rirhandzu, Laha ku anakanya ni ku navela a ku ri mahahlwa. Namuntlha hi tlulane milenge, hi...

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Poem title: Hi fikile emahandzeni
a yi ri ndlela yin'we leyi hi fambeke malembe kun'we ku languta endzhaku hi yi pfhumbisile ku languta emahlweni i nhova yi lavaka ku tshetshiwa namun...

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