Contests are a great way to sharpen your submission skills, stretch your imagination, and get your work out in the world. That’s why the Institute runs adult and kidlit writing contests throughout the year. Each contest culminates in a Winners Workshop where we announce the winners and critique the winning entries to help all entrants improve their skills. Plus, each contest has cash prizes for the top five entries. Check out our contests below.
What’s not to love about fall? Your mission is to write a fall-themed poem for kids. It can be funny, lyrical, thoughtful, or entertaining! No matter the tone, it should speak to kids.
IFW Thriller Synopsis and First Pages
Are you ready to try your hand at this plot-driven, action-packed genre? Start honing your skills now for the IFW Thriller Synopsis and First Pages contest. Check back here this fall for details and submission guidelines.
- Date: This contest will open in Fall 2022.
IFW My Funny Family Personal Essay
Is your family funny? This contest will be your chance to share a story about your family that will have us giggling, guffawing, and falling off our chairs.
- Personal Essay written in first person point of view
- True and funny story that somehow inspires
- 1,000 words or less
- This contest is now closed.
Following each writing contest, we hold a live workshop to announce the winners. The contest judge will reveal tips for writing in the contest genre and critique the winning entries sharing why they worked—and how they could be even better. To learn more about our next workshop, sign up below.
Looking to improve your contest entry?
Past Contests and Winners
Check out our past contest themes and winners!