Take part in our Yearly Contest

Don’t pass up this opportunity to showcase your skills and win cash prizes

Contest takes place from February 1st to July 1st every year

Must be a paid Idaho Writer’s League member to enter


The Idaho Writer’s League offers an annual contest for IWL Members.  Choose from Themed or Open categories in a variety of genres.

CASH PRIZES

  • Cash Prizes will be offered from 1st to 3rd place in each category.
  • Up to three honorable mentions will be offered for each category.

 

 

 

Themes

  • Each year, the Idaho Writer’s League provides a Theme or Title for its contest.
  • Members have two categories to enter:  Open title and/or the Assigned Title or theme.
  • For 2018 The Assigned Titles are “the Knock at the Side Door” or “A Tale Twice Told.”
  • The 2018 Assigned Theme choices are: “Forgotten” OR “Clean Getaway.”
  • Open Entries, and Assigned Title or Theme Entries will be judged separately. 

 

 

 


CONTEST RULES

  •  All entrants must be paid members of the Idaho Writer’s League.
  • Membership entitles entrants to enter the writing contests for free, with the exception of the book contest.  The book contest entrants must pay a $30 entry fee.
  • Entry must be the work of the author, not previously published or contracted for publication (or if self-published, not yet available for sale to the general public) at the time of submission; and not a previous winner in any IWL League contest (either monetary award or honorable mention).
  • Only one entry per Category per member is allowed in each contest. In the Assigned Contest, members may only choose one Assigned Title OR one Assigned Theme for each category.
  • Only the first entry in any category will be accepted, additional entries will be disqualified. No duplicate entries may be used in the Open or Assigned Contests.
  • When using either of the Assigned Titles, the exact title must be used. Any changes to the title will result in disqualification.
  • Only one entry per member is allowed. Entries from the same book in the First Chapter and Excerpt Contests are NOT allowed; i.e., no “cross-entries.” Members may submit a joint entry, but may not submit an additional individual entry. Additional entries will be disqualified.

 

 

CATEGORIES

  • Adult Genre Fiction:  A story written in the romance, mystery, western, suspense, speculative, or any other genre, using the elements of plot, theme, character, tone, mood, and style.  Limit: 3500 Words
  • Flash Fiction: A concise, sharply focused story, also known as a short-short story, with strong, interesting character(s), engaging plot, and selectively detailed setting(s). Its goal is “a single effect from a single cause.”  Limit: 400 to 1,000 words. 
  • Teen Fiction:  Concise, sharply focused work of fiction that explores a single idea or emotion, set off by conflict. Written for ages 13-18. The action and plot of the story should center around teenagers.  Limit: 3,000 words.
  • Children’s Fiction: A fictional prose narrative written for children. Indicate target group (under 8) or (8-12) under title when submitting.  Limit: 2,500 Words.
  • Short Humor:  Fiction or nonfiction that is written to entertain.  Limit: 2,500 Words.
  • Creative Nonfiction: Nonfiction works that use fiction techniques such as dramatic description, dialogue, and an inner point of view to give the writing the feel of fiction.  Limit: 2,500 Words.
  • Article: An article is a nonfiction composition that deals with a single topic. It may be instructive, informational, or persuasive, and focuses on people, places, historical events, and personalities, new ideas, how-to, or personal experience. An article usually appears in magazines, newspapers and journals, and often involves research.  Limit: 2,500 Words.
  • Personal Essay:  Nonfiction prose that expresses personal experiences and opinions dealing with aspects of everyday life. It can be entertaining or persuasive, varying from serious to light and humorous.  Limit: 2,500 Words.
  • Light Verse: Is written mainly to entertain and features crispness and unexpected twists. Greeting card verse, limericks, whimsical short poems, etc. Any form, rhyming or free verse.  Limit: 100 Lines.
  • Serious Verse: May be structured or prose-like, free verse or rhyming, in any meter, on a serious subject or written in a serious tone.  Limit: 100 Lines.
  • Screen Writing/Stage Play: 10 page limit. Screen writing is a blueprint for the film it will become. It can be an original piece or based on a true-story or previously written piece, like a novel or newspaper article. Screenwriting is primarily visual cues for the characters. It must contain the screenwriting format for margins and indentations, scene headings, action, characters, dialogue, transitions, and focal point.
  • Science Fiction/Fantasy: 3,500 word limit. A fiction story about science, perhaps invented science. It might be about strange lands and weird characters, alien worlds or robots that do human tasks. The story must have all the elements of plot, theme, character, tone, mood, and style. 

SUBMISSIONS

  • All entries must be mailed to the receiver for open, assigned or Book contest (1st vice president.)
  • Entrants may begin submitting by February 1st
  • All entries must be submitted (postmarked) by July 2nd this year since July 1st is a Sunday.
  • Cover Sheet: Each entry must include a cover sheet. The cover sheet will include in the upper left the author’s name, address, phone number, email address if any, chapter name, contest name (Assigned, Open, First Chapter, Excerpt, or Nonfiction Book), contest category (Assigned and Open Contests), title, number of pages (Book Contests), words (Assigned or Open Contests, fiction and nonfiction categories) or lines (Assigned or Open Contests, poetry categories), and Genre (Assigned or Open Contests, Adult Genre Fiction category). Each item must be on a separate line, double-spaced. Failure to include a cover sheet will disqualify the entry.
  • Manuscript format: Place the title about one-third down from the top margin, centered and in all caps. Drop four lines and begin the writing. Title and page number must be on the top right corner of every page after the first page. NOTE: “Excerpt” manuscript pages may reflect actual pagination instead of beginning with “page 1.” Author’s name must NOT appear ANYWHERE on the manuscript or the entry will be disqualified. Entries must be typed using Times Roman, Courier, or Arial font and double-spaced with one-inch margins all around. Poetry may be single or double-spaced. Do not staple manuscripts. Use paper clips or butterfly clips with manuscripts and synopsis pages.
  • Only one entry per Category per member is allowed in each contest. In the Assigned Contest, members may only choose one Assigned Title OR one Assigned Theme for each category. Only the first entry in any category will be accepted, additional entries will be disqualified. No duplicate entries may be used in the Open or Assigned Contests.
  • When using either of the Assigned Titles, the exact title must be used. Any changes to the title will result in disqualification.
  • Failure to abide by these rules will result in disqualification.
  • Contest for 2018 is closed.
  • Entries for the 2019 contest will be accepted starting February 1st 2019.

BOOK CONTESTS

  • Three Book Contest are offered,
    Non-Fiction (First Chapter)
    Novel (First Chapter)
    Novel (Excerpt)
  • Only one entry per category per submitter. 
  • Cannot use entries for First Chapter and Excerpt from the same manuscript
  • Submissions must include a synopsis for the book up to two pages single spaced and a manuscript up to twelve pages using the same format as described in the submissions section on this page
  • Synopsis pages must include the word “Synopsis” and the title in the upper right corner of each page. Each page after the first must include a page number after the title in the upper right corner. Author’s name must NOT appear ANYWHERE on the synopsis or the entry will be disqualified. If no Synopsis pages are included the entry will be disqualified
  • Manuscript pages must be numbered separately from the synopsis pages.
  • Three copies of the synopsis and manuscript must be submitted in the entry. Only one cover sheet is required. Entries with fewer than three copies of the synopsis and manuscript will be disqualified.
  • There is a fee of $30 for the book contest as three judges are paid for three critiques and scores.

 

 

2018 Theme

  • Each year, the Idaho Writer’s League provides a Theme or Title for its contest.
  • 2018 Assigned Titles: The Knock at the Side Door” OR “A Tale Twice Told”
  • 2018 Assigned Themes: “Forgotten” OR “Clean Getaway”
  • Writers may also submit their work in the “Open” category.
  • Open Entries, and Assigned Title or Theme Entries will be judged separately. 

 

 

 

VARDIS FISHER AWARD

  • The Vardis Fisher Award will be given to the most humorous entry in all categories

 

 

 

IWL Awards

  • Three special awards will be given to IWL members each year.
  • Poet of the Year
  • Published Author of the Year
  • Lifetime Service Award
  • Any chapter or member may nominate one current IWL member per year for these awards. Nominees must have been a member of the IWL during the year prior to the nomination.
  • Authors may be re-nominated if not selected. Previous Published Poet of the Year or Published Writer of the Year winners may be re-nominated.

 

 

 

POET OF THE YEAR

Criteria for nomination:

  1. a) Publication (see  Publication) of written work during the previous year.
  2. b) Nominee must be an IWL member during the year of nomination and the year prior to nomination.

 

2)   Nominations must include:

  1. a) A completed Nomination form,
  2. b) A letter of introduction about the nominee.
  3. c) A resume of the writer’s work published in the previous year (e.g., work published in 2018 for the 2019 award).
  4. d) Original copies or photocopies of work(s) published in magazines, journals, newspapers, etc., including the masthead of the publication showing the date of publication. Entire published books should be sent; these will be returned.

 

AUTHOR OF THE YEAR

Criteria for nomination:

  1. a) Publication (see  Publication) of written work during the previous year.
  2. b) Nominee must be an IWL member during the year of nomination and the year prior to nomination.

 

2)   Nominations must include:

  1. a) A completed Nomination form,
  2. b) A letter of introduction about the nominee.
  3. c) A resume of the writer’s work published in the previous year (e.g., work published in 2018 for the 2019 award).
  4. d) Original copies or photocopies of work(s) published in magazines, journals, newspapers, etc., including the masthead of the publication showing the date of publication. Entire published books should be sent; these will be returned.

 

 

 

IWL LIFETIME SERVICE AWARD

The IWL Lifetime Service Award is established as the highest honor the League may bestow on any of its members. The award may be presented in any given year to a worthy nominee or nominees, but does not need to be awarded every year.

  1. b) The IWL recognizes that members make many sacrifices to provide leadership and service to the League and the chapters.
  2. c) The IWL presents this award in recognition of outstanding service given by members to the League, their chapter, and their community.

 

2)   Criteria considered for nomination:

  1. a) Current member of the IWL with a minimum of eight consecutive years as a member of the IWL prior to the nomination.
  2. b) A minimum of five years of service to the IWL at the League and chapter level with two or more years as a League and chapter officer. Service must consist of any of the following:

 

  1. Any League elected officer position.
  2. Any chapter officer position.
  3. League or chapter secretary.
  4. League committee chairperson.
  5. League chapter newsletter editor.
  6. League writing contest receiver.
  7. Participation in IWL sponsored community service.
  8. The award may only be given once in a member’s life

Nominations must include a completed Nomination Form