Summer writing contests for kids

summer writing contests, writing contests for kids

THEY’VE MASTERED new grammar concepts and sharpened their editing skills. They’ve learned brainstorming and outlining tricks of the trade. Since last September, your kids have become more confident writers. Motivate them to keep learning through writing contests for kids!

Although some of these contest deadlines are much later in the year, your kids might prefer writing during the long days of summer vacation.

If you’re looking for more writing contests, check your local library. Libraries such as those in Phoenicia, New York or Berkshire County, Massachusetts offer exciting prizes for young writers of many ages!

Writing Competitions 2013

No cash prizes, but winners will receive a detailed, five-page writing assessment

  • Website:
  • Who is eligible: Ages 8-18
  • What they’re looking for: A piece of fiction that demonstrates character, conflict, and action in 500 words or less
  • Deadlines: June 30, 2013 (fiction set in the real world) and November 30, 2013 (fantasy, science fiction, etc.)

A Book That Shaped Me

The Library of Congress summer writing contest for the Mid-Atlantic region

  • Website:
  • Who is eligible: Rising 5th and 6th graders in participating library districts
  • What they’re looking for: A one-page essay about a book that made an impact on your life
  • Deadline: August 12, 2013
  • Entry Form

Patriot’s Pen

Cash prizes awarded by the Veterans of Foreign Wars

  • Website:
  • Who is eligible: Grades 6-8 (as of November 2013)
  • What they’re looking for: 300-400 word essay on “What Patriotism Means to Me”
  • Deadline: November 1, 2013
  • Entry Form

Voice of Democracy

College scholarships sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars

  • Website:
  • Who is eligible: Grades 9-12
  • What they’re looking for: 3-5 minute speech on “Why I’m Optimistic About our Nation’s Future”
  • Deadline: November 1, 2013
  • Entry Form

Totem Head’s Story Contest

Encouraging kids to write adventure stories in 1500 words or less

  • Website:
  • Who is eligible: Ages 5-18
  • What they’re looking for: Mysterious or suspenseful adventure stories that begin with the phrase, “So there I was”
  • Deadline: December 31, 2013
  • Entry Form
Photo © Karah Fredricks. Used by permission.
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