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Reading Adventures for Youth and Adults

Participate in Fairfax County Public Library's reading activities! Last Updated: Jul 10, 2024 9:54 AM

The World We Write

Short Story Contest for Adults banner

July 1-31, 2024


Fairfax County Public Library and the Fairfax Library Foundation invite school-age youth (grades 3-6), teens (grades 7-12) and adults (18+) to participate in our second annual "The World We Write" short story writing contest. Use one of the prompts to write a 250-word story.

Stories should be submitted online. Winners will be notified by August 21. 

Writing Prompts

lady reading a book

  1. She liked to fit people into the world like puzzle pieces, until...
  2. The villain is actually the hero.
  3. He twisted his fate between his fingers.
  4. "You wanna do something fun?"
  5. Things were going well, and then I took the long way home.

 Award

Three winners from each age group (grades 3rd - 6th, grades 7th-12th and adults) will receive a $25 gift card and a certificate signed by Jessica Hudson, our Library Director, and Lisa Bryant, Executive Director for the Fairfax Library Foundation. We will feature these short stories on our website. 

 Rules and Guidelines 

  1. Participants in 3rd-12th grade or adults who live, study or work in Fairfax County are eligible for the contest.
  2. One story per person is permitted.
  3. Stories must have a title.
  4. Stories cannot exceed 250 words and the font has to be Aptos, Times New Roman, Cambria or Calibri, font size 12, double-spaced.
  5. Stories must be uploaded as a PDF or Word document.
  6.  Stories will be judged on:
    • Creative Expression: Is your story original? Does it have an identifiable conflict? Does your story engage the reader? 
    • Storytelling: Is your story well organized? Does it have a strong sense of tone and theme?
    • Technical Aspects: Do your word choices enhance the story? Is your sentence structure varied and purposeful?  
  7. Stories should be submitted through our online submissions form.

Writers are not reimbursed for submittals.
Writers own the rights to their work.

Cosponsored by the Fairfax Library Foundation

Submission Form

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