In its 19th year, Explorations - the literary magazine of the University of Alaska Southeast and Anchorage - continues to honor writers and their work.
Awarding more than $1,800 in cash prizes, Explorations 2000 contains more than 30 poems and short stories from writers around the world.
``We opened up the submission process in 1985 to include writers from outside the university system,'' said Art Petersen, one of the founders of Explorations and an English professor at UAS.
``Since then, the quality of submissions and the level of competition has grown dramatically,'' Petersen said. ``We received 675 submissions this year.''
This year's winners include Eunice Scarefe of Canada; Marjorie Kowalski Cole of Ester, Alaska; Heather Doran Barbieri of Seattle and Lorraine Healy of Freeland, Wash.
Cole's poem,``Mom and her girlfriends, Miami Beach,'' brought home the Explorations 2000 Second Place Award for Literature and a cash prize of $500 dollars.
``It was my third submission to the magazine, but my first prize,'' said Cole, from her home near Fairbanks.
A librarian for more than 15 years, the poetess has published several short stories and written book reviews for the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner and the Seattle Post Intelligencer along with other publications.
``In some ways, I love writing poetry more than anything else,'' Cole said. ``The process is not always smooth but it is real pleasant for me.''
Along with its prose and poetry sections, Explorations 2000 also includes an Alaska Native Writers section, which showcased the work of seven wordsmiths.
Donna Foulke, a former Juneau resident now living in Vermont, won the Alaska Native Writers Award for Literature for her poem ``Tricycles.'' Next year, Explorations 2001 will award the first cash prize, $500, to the winner of this category.
Explorations 2000 is available at Hearthside Books, The Observatory and the UAS bookstore.