Listen up Minnesota student writers: Nine fresh writing competitions are calling for your attention—and work. Whether you’ve entered a writing contest in the past or you’re waiting for the perfect opportunity, now’s the time to get crafting and submit. These nine contests cover the gambit of ages, topics, and genres, which means no student is left out. That’s right, there’s no excuse not to enter! So put down your phones, pull up a chair, and check out this listing of Minnesota student writing contests for Spring 2018:
Frankenstein Project – Novella Contest 2018
Theme: One or more fundamental themes of the Mary Shelley novel Frankenstein
Age: Any person living in southeastern Minnesota/SELCO library region
Contests participants are asked to write a novella on a Frankenstein theme, like vengeance and futility or creativity and the responsibility of what has been created. Submissions must be between 20,000 and 50,000 words. The contest is free to enter and includes monetary prizes and publication in an anthology. Deadline for submissions: March 4, 2018.
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis – Student Essay Contest 2018
Theme: Should the Federal Government increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour?
Age: All high school students living in the Ninth Federal Reserve District
Essays must be limited to three pages on the topic and under the direction and supervision of a teacher. Monetary prizes for 30 finalists, along with first, second, and third cash prizes and a paid summer internship for the first prize winner. Teachers can also receive cash prizes. Deadline for submissions: April 20, 2018.
Minnesota State Fair – K-12 Competition
Theme: Reports and Creative Writing
Age: K – 12
Teachers or students submit work as an exhibit. Online registration begins May 7, 2018. Students may submit a variety of items; projects executed at home and school are welcome. Projects include drawings, paintings, reports, and creative writing. Entry is free. Deadline for submissions: August 7, 2018.
Twin Cities Juneteenth Celebration and Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board’s Youth Drawing and Essay Contest 2018
Theme: What Juneteenth means to you or your family or Why is Juneteenth an important historical event?
Juneteenth celebrates the end of African slavery in the U.S. Entrants must write a 250-word essay on one of the above themes. Contest is free to enter. First and second place winners are awarded prizes and honored at the Annual Juneteenth Celebration on June 16. Deadline for submissions: June 1, 2018.
2018 Lutherans for Life Minnesota Essay Contest
Theme: From Age-to-Age the Same and Bible verse Isaiah 46:3b-4
Age: Lutheran students in grades 6 – 12
Students must write a life-affirming essay on the topic, no more than 400 words for grades 6-8 and 750 words for grades 9-12. Monetary awards are given to top winners, along with advancement to the national contest. No entry fee. Deadline for submissions: March 18, 2018.
The Great River Shakespeare Festival/Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest 2018 (Winona)
Theme: Sonnet (see information below)
Age: Youth Category, ages 17 and younger
According to the website: “Sonnets may be written in Shakespearean, Spenserian, Petrarchan or Non-Traditional rhyme schemes, but each must be in the fourteen-line, iambic pentameter form.” Best youth category for this contest awards three winners, who will receive cash prizes. No fee to enter for youth category. Deadline for submissions: June 1, 2018.
The Great American Think-Off Writing Contest 2018
Theme: Which plays a greater role in shaping one’s life: success or failure?
Age: All ages
Essays must be no longer than 750 words. Four winners receive cash prizes and an invitation to a live debate on June 9 in New York Mills, MN, to answer the question. No fee to enter. Deadline for submissions: April 1, 2018.
2018 SCSC Writing Contest (South Central Service Cooperative & Minnesota State/Mankato)
Theme: Conservation and Sustainability
Age: Students in grades K - 12
Write a poem, fiction, or nonfiction piece that relates to the theme. Word length varies. The contest was created to recognize talented young writers in south-central Minnesota. Awards include publication in an anthology and copies for themselves and their school. Additional prizes may be awarded. Entry fee of $3 per submission, multiple submissions accepted. Deadline for submissions: March 19, 2018.
Lake Superior Writers 2018 Annual Contest
Age: Must be 18 or older – open to college students
The LSW 2018 Annual Writing Contest covers multiple genres, including poetry, short-short fiction, short fiction, and creative nonfiction. Monetary prizes and publication for winners. Entry fees are free for members of LSW; $35 fee for nonmembers. Deadline for submissions: April 1, 2018.
Good luck to all contestants!
Image by photosteve101