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Oprah Summer Reads 14-k Gold Giveaway


We Made the O List: So We're Giving Away the Gold

Some books make the A List, and some books make the O List.

In February, T.S. Poetry Press, known for poetry and memoirs, published its first novel, The Whipping Club by Deborah Henry. It is the story of a child placed for adoption, and years later, his birth parents learn that he wasn’t adopted as they had been told, but is in an orphanage – an institution that is more about child abuse than child care.

“Deborah Henry is a natural storyteller and she is far more,” says Pulitzer Prize-winning author Robert Olen Butler. “Her novel The Whipping Club is a compelling read, but it also seriously explores the terrible ways the world –as a society, as individuals—often fails its children. And most importantly, her book offers a searingly lovely vision of how wrongs can be made right. Deborah Henry is a splendid young novelist who deserves a wide audience.”

The novel is about to get that audience. This week, O Magazine—O as in Oprah—published its list of the 29 hottest reads for the summer – and The Whipping Club is on the list.

It made the O List. O my goodness.

Here at TweetSpeak Poetry, we’re celebrating Deborah Henry’s book and its O-list recognition. Like the secrets buried in The Whipping Club, we’re burying some secret words – secret O words.

Three different words will be available in our blog posts each day. For example, you might see #Oprah, and you might see #Ovation, and you might see #Onyx. Or three other O words. (Personally, I like the word #Oleander.) Look for the hashtag symbol (#) in front of an O word.

Then write a poem or take a picture, using or illustrating the secret word. Post the poem or picture on your blog, Twitter, or Facebook, with a link back to this post. Then stop in and share your post link with us in this comment box, and you’ll be entered in the 14-k-gold-secret giveaway (one necklace—winner’s choice—from the options below). Multiple entries, each using a different secret word, are perfectly acceptable.

14-k-gold-secret giveaway by

The contest ends on Friday – this Friday, June 15, at 9 p.m. Eastern time. One winner will be picked at random and announced here at TweetSpeak on Monday, June 18. The more you share, the more chances you have to win! Just remember to link to us and to come back and share your post link with us HERE.

In addition to the O secret word contest, for two weeks only, the Kindle price of The Whipping Club will be $2.99. (I bought mine yesterday.)

Congratulations to Deborah Henry and T.S. Poetry Press. And start looking for those secret O words.

Post by Glynn Young, author of Dancing Priest: A Novel


Buy a year of Every Day Poems, just $2.99— Read a poem a day, become a better poet. In June we’re exploring the theme Trees.

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Your Comments

69 Comments so far

  1. LjDowns says:

    Must poems use all three of the daily words, or can you use just one or two to be eligible?

  2. Alas, I don’t write poetry. But I’m downloading my copy as soon as I finish typing this comment. So very happy about all of this.

    • L. L. Barkat says:

      Shoot, Nancy, you could try something really small. Like a haiku-ish kind of thing. What could it hurt? :)

    • Glynn says:

      You can also take a photo — like an old #Oldsmobile, or an #onion.:)

      • L. L. Barkat says:

        Well, only if the Oldsmobile or the onion was a secret word. :)

        But you’re right, Glynn! She needn’t write a single poem (darn ;-)

        • Oh, yay! We’re nesting.

          Sort of like orioles.

          Which sounds a lot like Oreos.

          • Well didn’t you all have fun without me here this afternoon?

            You know, oodles of good words begin with the letter O.

            Like Owens. And Orangutan. Not that those two are related.

            In any case, We’ll see if I’m able to wax poetic. Or onomatopoeia-tic. Another good O-word, no?

            I’m just happy to have gotten the book for $2.99.

            Carry on.

  3. Congrats to miss Deborah and TS Poetry Press.


  4. Ok. So I can take a photo, but NOT of my bowl of Cheerios, right? I don’t have any onyx or oleander around here. I do have cows who could moooooooooo an #ovation. ( <—— see all those Os in Moo?)


  5. It only takes one person of influence to garner the attention of distracted bystanders. So happy Oprah noticed the book and shouted it to the masses. Yay! Wish I was a poet, I would join the party here. I’ll just linger in the creativity of others.

  6. My poem “Ovation.” What a fun way to spend the week. Thank you for inspiring me to play with words.

  7. So proud of you guys! BIG HUGE CONGRATULATIONS. This is worthy of shouting from the mountaintops. Or else, just quoting a celebratory poem. Either way, NICE!

  8. Tania Runyan says:

    Great announcement, Glynn! Well done!

  9. Connie Cornwell Chipman says:


    You Only Live Once Poster Movie 11×17 Henry Fonda Sylvia Sidney Ward Bond William Gargan
    You Only Live Once reproduction Approx. Size: 11 x 17 Inches – 28cm x 44cm Style A mini poster print Pop

  10. LjDowns says:

    “Footprints of Oleander,” my poem from yesterday’s challenge.

  11. Grace Marcella Brodhurst-Davis says:

    Here’s my poem to #Outside


    Outside of myself
    I can see how
    The wind blows
    Breath into me,
    But can’t seem
    To see how
    Breath in me
    Can erase the cacophony
    Of deep-hued memories
    Of my being
    Though knowing
    Such breath,
    I pulse towards
    My innermost calling
    To free myself to be

  12. Oh, having fun with O words. I love rocks. Here’s my poem for today.

  13. Connie Cornwell Chipman says:


    Obsession absorbed deep into my soul,
    fostering burning passions
    of hot rhythm ready to spill out
    with spastic vigor,
    that has taken over
    my body as the music’s jump jiving,
    fast and free.

  14. Connie Cornwell Chipman says:

    oops scratch the #Obsession poem

  15. Connie Cornwell Chipman says:


    I can’t find the words
    to play.
    Oh! You said to check
    the post today.
    Just look for words
    that start with #O,
    which you will find in
    the link below.
    I’m blind and daft,
    how I feel #OLD
    I’ll go to link that you did show.

  16. I wrote a poem using the word #operate; the link is here:

    Thanks for the fun and chances to win! :)

  17. I have another poem to share, titled “Dripping”, using the word #outpost. :) Here is the link:

    Thanks so much!

  18. My last poem, a tanka, for the contest: #obsession
    Thank you. This has been such fun!

  19. Ellen EtCetera says:

    Darn. I honestly cannot figure out how this contest works. I click “blog” and it takes me back to the home page, referencing a daily blog that I can’t seem access. Are we supposed to be using the words #Oprah, #Ovation, #Onyx, or #Oleander? I was making the assumption those were examples and that the “real” secret words would be found elsewhere, but where? I am #obscured, #out-of-it, and #overwrought! Can you #oblige?

    • L. L. Barkat says:

      Seems you figured it out—that every morning post this week had the secret words. Love all the poems you offered up!

      Oprah, Ovation, Onyx, and Oleander were the words for that post (sneaky Glynn).

      You crack me up!

  20. Darlene Kuykendall says:

    This song, by Human League plays in my head every time I covet a new pair of shoes; Especially the last two verses. Shoes…My Obsession!

    You are an obsession
    I cannot sleep
    I am your possession
    Unopened at your feet
    There’s no balance
    No equality
    Be still I will not accept defeat

    I will have you
    Yes, I will have you
    I will find a way and I will have you
    Like a butterfly
    A wild butterly
    I will collect you and capture you

    You are an obsession
    You’re my obsession
    Who do you want me to be
    To make you sleep with me
    You are an obsession
    You’re my obsession
    Who do you want me to be
    To make you sleep with me

    I feed you I drink you
    My day and my night
    I need you I need you
    By sun or candlelight
    You protest
    You want to leave
    Oh, there’s no alternative

    Your face appears again
    I see the beauty there
    But I see danger
    Stranger beware
    A circumstance
    In your naked dreams
    Your affection is not what it seems

    My fantasy has turned to madness
    And all my goodness
    Has turned to badness
    My need to possess you
    Has consumed my soul
    My life is trembling
    I have no control

    I will have you
    Yes, I will have you
    I will find a way and I will have you
    Like a butterfly
    A wild butterly
    I will collect you and capture you!


  21. Connie Cornwell Chipman says:


    It’s easy to imagine something astounding
    if only we would take the time to look.
    Sadly, I only glimpsed.
    Time marches on, and it’s in those
    happy hours of slumber,
    when the imagination flashes…
    like Galvani’s spark, that
    in blink of an eye
    the past, present, and
    future no longer have
    restraints of time.!/chipmancs

  22. outside the trailer /
    blackberry bushes getting bigger /
    Internet won’t connect /


    travels under Ice Moon /
    with only dream-stories /
    to show / ….

  24. 9. The little dog is scratching,
    and let this be a lesson
    to guard, lest flea-like Hashtags
    turn into an #obsession.!/EllenSka

  25. 8. Our hungry flea-ro Hashtag,
    looking rather like a ghost
    hopped a passing poodle—
    a much more posh #outpost.!/EllenSka

  26. 7. Finding insufficient,
    said Doc, “#Our deed is done,”
    And with a flick of finger
    he sent Hashtag along.!/EllenSka

  27. 6. “We’ll have to #operate quickly,”
    said the doctor to the nurse.
    “Is she qualified for surgery?
    How much money’s in her purse?”!/EllenSka

  28. 5. The lady’s flailing propelled her
    to a doctor’s office nearby.
    (One does not expect an #ovation
    when a flea is in one’s eye.)!/EllenSka

  29. 4. Resourceful little Hashtag
    climbed on an #oleander
    and jumped into a lady’s eye
    (though seeking doggy dander).!/EllenSka

  30. 3. The sidewalk is a bad place
    for a Hashtag flea’s loose ends.
    An #Oxford shoe just missed him
    —we thought it was the end.!/EllenSka

  31. 2. One might not even see
    A flea as black as #onyx
    Jumping on the sidewalk
    flexing both his drumsticks.!/EllenSka

  32. 1. #Once upon a time
    a tiny little flea,
    whose name by chance was Hashtag,
    detached himself from me.!/EllenSka

  33. #operation

    O Solitude

    Solitude is the operation
    of the soul in search of itself.
    It’s in the dead center
    of soundlessness
    that vitality’s insistent
    reminder can be heard.
    The crunch of ant feet
    descending into dust,
    their mission mandated
    by singular intelligence,
    beating a rhythm
    that the soul knows.

  34. #Oxford


    Oxford cloth shirts are as indestructible
    as he believed his career to be.
    His was a buttoned-down theology
    of work, an ethic that took the starch
    and rendered crisp collared authority
    its due. Locked from his office,
    he slumped in the pile of rumpled
    threads waiting for someone
    to see his worth, restore his press.

  35. Grace Marcella Brodhurst-Davis says:


    “Oxford Comma”

    Oh! Such dilemma!
    Over Oxford comma
    Old country of mine
    ‘Lose it not!’
    Others say,
    ‘In the gutter!
    Too much clutter!’
    Haters love the brevity
    Lovers, the history
    Or perhaps utility?
    This serial comma,
    Such an innocent fella,
    Breathes such life
    In naysayers,
    Yet breeds
    So strongly
    Among players
    This English mystery,
    To everyone’s worry,
    Is still very much alive
    In World’s ever-changing drive

  36. ruffled crow feather
    hot suburban sidewalk
    one pecked plum!/EllenSka

  37. Easter, and the weight of this Resurrection
    Throwing off the burden of sorrow
    A too-tight shoe removed
    The pain of recirculating blood
    Restoring the body with a sharp aliveness

    (more at )

  38. in the field beyond,
    circus tents lime green & pink
    odds bodkins!

  39. Wow! Congratulations! How exciting!

  40. “Oprah Summer Reads 14-k Gold Giveaway – Tweetspeak Poetry” was indeed a delightful
    post, can’t help but wait to go through much more of your blogs.
    Time to waste a lot of time on-line lol. Thanks for your effort


  1. Onyx | To Create… - June 13, 2012

    [...] Press is so proud to have their first novel honored, they are sponsoring a poetry and photography contest this [...]

  2. Obsession | To Create… - June 14, 2012

    [...] I had to do just one more poem for the contest. [...]

  3. Apple Trees and Dublin: Interview with Deborah Henry | TweetSpeak Poetry - June 23, 2012

    [...] Our latest title, The Whipping Club, by Deborah Henry, was recently chosen as an Oprah Summer Read. [...]

  4. Fiction debut could help Dana Gioia’s dream come true | TweetSpeak Poetry - October 8, 2012

    [...] S. Poetry Press, publisher of the Oprah Summer Read The Whipping Club, has released a fiction debut that could help Dana Gioia’s dream come true. Gioia has made a [...]

  5. Cape Cod Stories: Placing with Thoreau | - June 24, 2013

    [...] I had done this on the exact date, one year later, as when I had offered gold in celebration of our T.S. Poetry Press Oprah appearance. June 12, 2012, Oprah. June 12, 2013, an Olympic-sized editorial cut and post, by an editor with [...]

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