WCCW Writing Contests 2023
It’s that time again! Here is a complete list of 2023 WCCW Conference Writing Contests. This year we offer more than two dozen contests covering a variety of topics and genres. Special thanks to all contest sponsors! (Here’s an Entry Form.)
Here are the details…
Contest deadline is July 31, 2023. Entries must be postmarked by this date.
Each contest comes with a cash award. The amount of the award is listed with each contest.
Open to everyone. You don’t have to be a WCCW member to enter any contest. Neither do you have to attend the Writers Conference to participate.
Winners will be announced at the 28th Annual White County Creative Writers Conference, September 2, 2023 in Searcy AR.
Mail entries and fees to:
802 W Center
Beebe AR 72012
You’ll find some helpful formatting guidelines here.
1. A GOOD WORD
Choose a quote that speaks to you, and write a 600-word blog post about it.
Sponsor: White County Creative Writers. Judge: Linda Apple
2. I REMEMBER WHEN
Short non-fiction story of a memory involving your grandparent(s).
Sponsor: BCC Freight Haulers
3. DEATH & DISMEMBERMENT AT THE DMV
It’s the zombie-apocalypse and you’re in line to get your tags renewed. 3000-word max.
Sponsor: Rhonda Roberts
4. WHAT’S IN A SONG?
Creative Fiction. Write a story inspired by the lyrics of a favorite song. 1,500–2,000 words. Be creative, don’t just write down the lyrics. Put song title on 1st page.
Sponsor: Little Red Writing Hood
5. DEL GARRETT’S GIMME THE CREEPS
Write a ghost story, 1,000–1,500 words, on “Things that go bump in the night,” and show the main character’s reaction. No slasher stories. Keep it G/PG rated. Indicate on 1st page if you want to be published.
Sponsor: Del Garrett
6. SOLANDER PRESS CHILDREN’S BOOK
Children’s book, no more than 700 words, appropriate to be read to children ages 5-7 in a school setting.
Sponsor: Solander Press/Clarissa Willis
7. COZY, SEASONED ROMANCE
Short story, 1500-2000 words. Cozy = no sex, gore or foul language. Seasoned = older characters.
Sponsor: Renee La Viness
8. SHOW ME A GREAT MYSTERY
Submit your best mystery. May include dead bodies, but not required. Keep me guessing until the end. 2000 min-3000 max words.
Sponsor: Ellen Withers
9. CRACKPOT CRITTERS CONTEST
Humorous Essay. You’re the psychiatrist—write an assessment for the jury about your pet’s mental problems—how they led to the “crime”, diagnosis, symptoms, relationships, IQ, behavioral and cognitive issues, pet’s attitude, etc. 1500 words max.
Sponsor: Peggy Sanders
10. MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE
Subject: Make the ordinary extraordinary. Science fiction/fantasy. 2000-2500 range.
Sponsor: Lindsey Pawn and Storage/Lindsey Plumbing Inc.
11. A RECIPE FOR DISASTER
1500-word max. Short story. Must contain a six-syllable word.
Sponsor: Rhonda Roberts
12. I LOVE THE 70s
Write an essay or reflection on anything that you loved about the 70s: the music, the movies, the fashion, the food. Tell us about a favorite memory, or anything about why you think this decade was the best decade of all. Up to 1200 words.
Sponsor: Steve May
13. MEET CUTE
A short story or vignette, 1000 words max. Boy and girl meet in a “cute” or different way. Beginning of a romance.
Sponsor: Dot Hatfield
14. GLASSWORKS AWARD
Essay, 1200 word max. Subject: Retirement. What will you do when you retire, or what are you doing, if already retired?
Sponsor: Glassworks Ink
15. A LITTLE FREE-VERSE
Free verse poem, any subject. Must be 24 lines, syllables varied, no rhyme scheme. Special instructions: must use the word “emancipated” in the poem. No sex or violence.
Sponsor: Penpoint Writers’ Group
16. THE FIB
A Fibonacci poem, any subject. An eight-line poem where the syllable count follows the numbers in the Fibonacci sequence in mathematics, where the number of syllables of each line equals the sum of the number of syllables in the previous two lines, beginning at 1. (Syllable count: 1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21)
Sponsor: Donna Nelson
17. IT BEARS REPEATING AWARD
A Pantoum poem, 4 to 6 stanzas. Follow form guidelines found here. (See Shadow Poetry – Poetry types – Pantoum.)
Sponsor: Gayle Glass
18. WHODUNNIT? AWARD
Murder mystery, 2500-word max. A 21st Century victim is killed with a medieval weapon (E.g., crossbow, poleaxe, mace, etc.) Show how a sleuth solves the crime. No erotica or profanity.
Sponsor: Gary Breezeel
19. GRANNY PREWITT AWARD
Short fiction or non-fiction story, 500 – 1000 words. Subject: A parent and child conversation about the death of an elderly family member. Only 100 words may be used for narrative or exposition, with exception of dialogue tags.
Sponsor: Micaela Campbell and Anthony Wood
20. TWO MAGES ARE BETTER THAN ONE
Fantasy short story, 2500 words max. Subject: A pair of wizards who are best friends seek to tame the local dragon. Brief critique given if requested on first page of story.
Sponsor: Carol Hodges
21. WAS I ABDUCTED?
1500-word max. short fiction. Must include an unexplained missing period of time.
Anonymous judge and sponsor.
22. GIN CREEK POET’S AWARD
28-line poem, any style. Subject: Humorous Event from Childhood. Special Instructions: Spaces between lines will not be counted in the line limit, but the poem should fit on one page.
Sponsor: Gin Creek Poets
23. AUTHORS ANONYMOUS 2.0 AWARD
Short story fiction, mixed genre, (combining two or more genres in one piece) 2000-word max.
Sponsor: Authors Anonymous 2.0
24. WESTERN JUSTICE
2500-word max, new or old western. Must involve justice being served, whether by the law or otherwise.
Sponsor: Razorback Auto Sales
25. SCRIVENINGS PRESS CLEAN FICTION AWARD
Short Story, any genre. 3000 words max. No foul language or graphic sex or violence.
Sponsor: Scrivenings Press LLC
26. MAKE ME GIGGLE AWARD
Write a 1500 word humorous short story of a middle grade kid in the cafeteria. Must have a clear beginning, middle and end.
Sponsor: Debbie Archer
27. LESSONS FROM TRAVEL
Write a personal essay or memoir about a travel experience. Max 2500 words.
Sponsor: Terry Engel
Postmark Deadline: July 31, 2023