A Writing Contest in Partnership with #TheIsolationJournals
We are excited to announce the newest iteration of the annual Creative Reactions and Audience Voices Writing Contests: the Impromptu Challenge. This new partnership with the Isolation Journals, an international community founded by PUC artist Suleika Jaouad that cultivates creativity and fosters connection through journaling, invites music lovers of all ages to reflect on their relationship to music through a series of journaling prompts.
The Impromptu Challenge has launched with two prompts from Isolation Journals founder, Emmy-award-winning journalist and New York Times best-selling author Suleika Jaouad. The first prompt was inspired by her recent appearance with musician Jon Batiste on PUC’s Healing with Music Series: “The Beat Goes On: Healing from Cancer through Music” (November 15, 2023):
Write about a time when music served as a healing force in your life or in the lives of those around you.”—Suleika Jaouad (READ HER ESSAY ON THIS PROMPT HERE)
The second prompt is inspired by “Exploring the Intersection of Music, Dance & Parkinson’s,” the second event on PUC’s Healing with Music Series which will take place on March 3, 2024:
When was the last time you danced? Where were you? What were you listening to? What thoughts or feelings emerged? What stayed with you?”—Suleika Jaouad (Read her essay on this prompt here)
The final Impromptu Challenge prompt is related to the final topic of the 2023-24 Healing with Music series, “Anxiety, Depression, and Music,” featuring pianist Jonathan Biss and writer Adam Haslett (presented April 24, 2024):
Write about a time you saw the art in failure, when you felt the euphoria of truly letting go.”—JONATHAN BISS (Read HIS REFLECTION on this prompt here)
While everyone is welcome to participate in the Impromptu Challenge whether or not they choose to submit their writing as part of the contest, the information below outlines the contest’s parameters:
We look forward to your submission(s)! You are welcome to submit an entry in response to one or more of the prompts. If you have any questions about the contest, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Participants in the Impromptu Challenge who would like to enter their responses into the writing contest must do so by Friday, March 22, 2024 via the submission portal below.
- Participants are welcome to submit as many entries as they like on any of the prompts.
- Reflection on the prompts can take a number of forms—essay, blank verse, prose, poetry, narrative, etc. Submissions should be no more than 1000 words.
- Entries must be submitted electronically in a PDF or Word document format.
- The author’s name must not be included anywhere within the submission, nor within the file name.
Contest entries will be divided into two categories—General Public & Current Princeton University Student—and evaluated anonymously by a panel of judges from across the Princeton University campus and town community. Winning entries will be announced at the final Healing with Music event of the season on April 24, 2024 featuring pianist Jonathan Biss and writer Adam Haslett.
A range of prizes for the winning entries include a concert poster signed by Suleika Jaouad and Jon Batiste; an embroidered piece featuring an excerpt from the submission created by Diana Weymar (Tiny Pricks Project, Interwoven Stories); Ways of Hearing: Reflections on Music in 26 Pieces, PUC’s anthology published by Princeton University Press; and more.
Winning entries will be published in Princeton University Concerts’ online and print materials. Writers who prefer to keep their identity private will be published anonymously.
Please use the form below to submit your entry. Submissions are due by 11:59PM (ET) on Friday, March 22, 2024.