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Winners of the Claudia Ann Seaman Awards for Young Writers 2016

Polyphony H.S. and the Community Foundation of Hudson Valley are pleased to announce the winners of the Claudia Ann Seaman Awards for Young Writers. Each year, three prize winners are chosen in Poetry, Short-Fiction, and Creative Non-Fiction. The winners are selected by published authors from our annual printed volume. In addition, two ranked honorable mentions are selected in each genre. The pieces represent some of the finest published works by teen writers in the world.


Poetry Judge, Kathleen Rooney

Kathleen Rooney is a founding editor of Rose Metal Press and a founding member of Poems While You Wait. She teaches English and creative writing at DePaul University and is the author of eight books of poetry, nonfiction, and fiction, including the novels O, Democracy! (Fifth Star Press, 2014) and Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk (St. Martin’s Press, forthcoming 2017), and the novel in poems Robinson Alone (Gold Wake Press, 2012). With Eric Plattner, she is the coeditor of René Magritte: Selected Writings (University of Minnesota Press, 2016). She lives in Chicago with her spouse, the writer Martin Seay.


  • Poetry Winner:  Kacey Fang, Small Things
    The Harker School, San Jose, CaliforniaRead Small Things


  • 1st Honorable Mention:  Katie Hibner, A Rejection for an Amateur Cartographer
    Mason High School, Mason, OH 

    Read A Rejection for an Amateur Cartographer

  • 2nd Honorable Mention:  Kathryn Hargett, Boyhood
    Alabama School of the Arts, Birmingham, Alabama
    Read Boyhood


Fiction Judge, Martin Seay

Martin Seay’s first novel, The Mirror Thief, was released by Melville House in May of 2016. He holds undergraduate degrees from Trinity University and an MFA in creative writing from Queens University of Charlotte, North Carolina; he was also a 2005 – 2006 fiction fellow at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts. He works for the Village of Wheeling, Illinois, where until recently he served as executive secretary. Originally from Texas, he lives in Chicago with his spouse, the writer Kathleen Rooney.

  • Fiction Winner: Frani O’Toole, Notes on the Third Graders
     The Latin School of Chicago, Chicago, ILRead Notes on Third Graders
  • Honorable Mention: Walker Caplan Harold’s Dad Is a Cool Dad
     Lakeside School, Seattle, WA

    Read Harold’s Dad is a Cool Dad





A student-run national literary magazine for high school writers and editors