Entries for the 2017 Tulsa City-County Library’s annual Young People’s Creative Writing contest are being accepted Feb. 1-March 4. The contest is free to enter and open to ages 10-18 for those who live in Tulsa County, attend school in Tulsa County or have a nonresident library card.
There are three age divisions: 10-12 years old, 13-15 and 16-18. Within each age division, there are five categories; participants may enter one manuscript per category:
• Short Story – each entry, no more than 1,500 words.
• Informal Essay – a short composition on a topic of issue giving your opinion or recounting a personal experience. No more than 1,500 words.
• Poetry – one poem, no more than 300 words.
• Short Play – no more than six characters, no more than three locations, no more than 10 pages. Limited to between five and 10 minutes in length.
• Comix – entry must be complete in itself and not a fragment of a larger work. No more than eight pages. Work can be with or without words, in black and white or color, and fiction or nonfiction. Computer-generated images are acceptable as long as they are original works (no clip art). Must use 8-inch by 11-inch paper and submit as flat work, not as a booklet.
Within each age division and category, cash prizes are awarded: $100 for first place, $50 for second place and $25 for third place. The “Writer to Watch” award, endowed by retired librarian Rosemary Moran, is a prize of $100 and recognizes a young adult who has consistently entered the contest and demonstrates promising writing techniques.
All entrants will receive an invitation to the awards program, to be held on Friday, May 5, 7 p.m. at Hardesty Regional Library’s Connor’s Cove, 8316 E. 93rd St. Laurie Halse Anderson, winner of the 2017 Anne V. Zarrow Award for Young Readers’ Literature, will be the featured speaker and will present the awards.
“The Young People’s Creative Writing Contest gives Tulsa County youth an outlet to express and exercise their imagination and creativity by offering them the opportunity to enter their writing in up to five different categories,” says Leah Weyand, Tulsa City-County Library teen services coordinator. “Once a young writer ages into the contest at age 10, we encourage them to enter year after year and challenge themselves to improve their writing. Perspective, technique and skills change as they mature.”
The contest is sponsored by the Tulsa Library Trust. Additional support is provided by The Mary K. Chapman Foundation and George Kaiser Family Foundation.
Entry forms with rules and regulations are available at all locations or on the library’s teen website. For more information, call your local library or the AskUs Hotline at 918-549-7323, or visit tulsalibrary.org.