St. Davids Christian Writers' Conference
- All conferees of the SDCW conference who attend at least one workshop daily all week may enter the contests. There are no entry fees.
- Faculty members are not eligible to compete in their areas of expertise. (They may enter other categories.)
- You may enter up to three categories, but only one manuscript per category.
- All entries must be unpublished and not accepted by a publisher at time of entry.
- First, second, and third places receive cash awards. Honorable mentions receive a certificate. The judges, who are experienced writers, do not always award all the prizes in all the categories. Although those judges usually comment on entries, the contests are not a critiquing service.
- Humorous Poetry--rhymed light verse, 30 lines maximum, that takes a humorous or satirical point of view and includes a twist at the end.
- Serious Poetry--one poem, 30 lines maximum, in any style. We're looking for use of language and depth of feeling.
- Sudden or Flash Fiction--600 words maximum. A short-short story aimed at adults or teens. The challenge of flash fiction is to tell a complete story in which every word is absolutely essential, to peel away the frills and lace until you're left with nothing but the hard, clean-scraped core of a story. Include a surprise or twist.
- Adult, Young Adult--1500 words maximum. The first chapter of a novel aimed at adults or teens. Any subject--humorous or serious, contemporary or historical--in any genre. Grammar and presentation are considered.
- Mid-grade First Chapter--1000 words maximum. Any subject--humorous or serious, contemporary or historical, fantasy or real. Grammar and vocabulary should be
appropriate for ages 9-12.
- Persuasive Nonfiction (Opinion Piece)--800 words maximum. Take on an issue; take on the world! It can be religious or secular with a well-defined point or opinion.
- Informative Nonfiction (Article)—1500 words maximum of your best nonfiction writing. This can be aimed at either a secular or religious publication.
- Picture Book or Children's Short Story--800 words maximum. Quality must be "ready to publish" by standards generally recognized by publishers.
- Children's Nonfiction--800 words maximum. Any child-appropriate subject using vocabulary
and grammar for ages 6-12 that can be easily understood.
- Personal Experience Feature--1000 words maximum, first person. It can be dramatic, romantic, spiritual, or. . .? Make one strong connection between the experience and a practical application to life.
- Humor--750 words maximum, prose. This can be a monologue, a short prose scene, or personal experience. The goal is to make people laugh--not at pain, but at absurdity, irony, our own foibles, and their comic consequences at times.
- Devotional--written in the format of The Upper Room or The Secret Place. Please specify which format you are following. Check their websites for guidelines. Make sure your scripture passage is more than a few verses long, and relates well to your devotional.
Entries failing to meet these requirements will be disqualified. Before submitting manuscripts, please read the requirements below.
How to Enter:
- Manuscripts must be professional in appearance--typed, double-spaced, with 12-point type and 1-inch margins. Paper clips only, no staples. Include the title, category, and word count on each entry.
- Keep your original; send two copies. Do not put your name on your manuscripts!
- On a single separate paper, include: your name, address, and phone number; the titles of all entered manuscripts and the categories to which they belong.
- All entries must be mailed to Janyce Brawn, 105 Hilltop Road, Edinboro, PA 16412, and must be received by May 8, 2013. We are no longer accepting entries at the registration table.