Monday, November 26, 2012

Teen Writing Contest: Why did we come here?

by Stephanie Morrill

It's time for a new writing contest! Here are the details for this round:

Your prompt is: Why did we come here? 

Your word limit this round is 110 words. (100 words + the prompt sentence + 5 bonus words just for the heck of it.)  You can use the prompt sentence anywhere in your 110 word entry. First line, last line, third line, whatever, but it must be a question.

Think of your 110 words as the opening of a story. Your goal is to draw the reader in, same as you would want to be drawn in if you were picking up a book.

Your entries are due on Monday, December 3rd (2012) by 11:59pm Kansas City time.

The contest is for those age 21 and under. One entry per person.

*NEW THIS ROUND* Instead of emailing your entries to me, you'll be submitting them on the form below. This will not only reduce the time I spend registering entries, it will reduce opportunities for human error, which is always nice. Please let me know if you're having problems with the form, or if you have any questions about this. My email address is Stephanie(at)GoTeenWriters.com.
View Around the World in 80 Dates on Amazon.com

Our wonderful and gracious judges this round are Christa Banister and Carla Stewart:

Christa Banister

Christa Banister is a full-time freelancer writer, specializing in music, movies and books-related reviews and interviews and is the author of two novels, Around the World in 80 Datesand Blessed Are the Meddlers. Based in Dallas, Texas, she also weighs in on various aspects of pop culture on her personal blog. For more information, including her upcoming book signings and sample chapters of her novels, check out her Website.


View Stardust on Amazon.com




Carla Stewart
Carla Stewart is the award-winning author of three novels. Her newest one, Stardust, is the story of a young mom in the 1950s who must make a new life for herself and her daughters when her unfaithful husband drowns in the bayou. Carla’s writing reflects her passion for times gone by as she endeavors to take readers to that place in their hearts called “home.” Carla loves to connect with readers at www.carlastewart.com.


Curious about how the judges work their magic? Here's a copy of the feedback form our judges receive.


60 comments:

  1. Cool!! Excited for my first "normal" contest (only other one I've done was the 500 word one). Just what I needed...something to get my mind working again on something other than my WIP. Change of scenery is always good :)

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  2. Can't wait! I enjoy these contests so much.

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    1. MS. NICKNAME GIVER!!!! WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ON GTW?!?

      *Ahem* Sorry. Missed you around here!

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  3. Looks great, Stephanie! Can't wait to get started. :)

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  4. Yay!! I've been looking forward to another one!!

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    1. Looks like real fun, I'm staring to get excited!

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    2. Yeah! I entered one, and it was a blast! I didn't place in the final twenty or anything like that, but I got some super feedback!

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    3. How do you know the results?? I've no idea what place I got?? Coild somebody answer me? Thanks!! -Karimah

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    4. The top 20 won't be announced until Thursday, and the winners will likely be announced next week.

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  5. Awesome! I can't wait to get started on this. :D

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  6. I can't seem to do less then 120 words! AHHHHH!

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    1. I know right! I am terrible at limiting my words...oh lord this will be a challenge lol

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  7. Sweetness!!! Cant wait to get started. Except word limiting. I can wait on that. I'd much rather send in a 1000 word something or other, since it gives my brain room to wiggle, but I'll settle.

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  8. Ohhh! Fun! Thank you so much for hosting this contest and thank you judges as well!
    Question: Do we have to write this exact question - "Why did we come here?" And if so, can we change it a bit like, "Why *on earth* did we come here?!"
    Thank you again! ♥

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    1. Good question, Leorah. To preserve the "comparing apples to apples" element of the contest, the prompt sentence has to remain as is. You could add to the front of it, if you like, but those 5 words and the question mark have to stay together.

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    2. Okay...I understand what you're saying. Thank you! Totally loving this!

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  9. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Yes, I most certainly look like I'll be professional enough to get in the top twenty.

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  10. could we say something like "why did we have to come here"?

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    1. To preserve the "comparing apples to apples" element of the contest, the prompt sentence has to remain as is. You could add to the front of it, if you like, but those 5 words and the question mark have to stay together.

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  11. So excited!

    I need to do some research for my WIP. Does anyone know of some good books set in the 50s?

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    1. "Stardust," mentioned in the post, appears to be set in the 50s. You could start with that. :)

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  12. I'm SO excited to see another prompt up. I've missed them. :) Thank you, ladies!

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  13. This is my first contest so I could not wait to start writing! I just sent it in! :)

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  14. Woo-hoo, another contest! I just sent mine in. So excited! Good luck everyone! :)

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  15. I was wondering if my 110 words has to start with the prompt sentence or if it can go somewhere in my writing?

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    1. It can go anywhere in the story, as long as "Why did we come here?" is all together. Stephanie says you can add to the front, but you can't add words inbetween those five and the question mark. My prompt sentence is actually somewhere in the middle of mine :D

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    2. I love when you guys jump in and answer each other's questions. Thanks, Hannah :)

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  16. When you use hyphenated words like devil-may-care and such, does that count as one word or three? My Word 2011 word counter counts it as one, but I wanted to make sure.

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    1. Ugh, I thought I replied to this last night - sorry!

      I use Word, so whatever your Word says should be just fine :)

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  17. Trying to shorten your entry and getting stuck at 111 words FTW!

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  18. I'm super excited; thanks for the contest, Stephanie! I don't think I'll place, but I tried my best. I just submitted my entry. Mine is from the viewpoint of my MC in the MS that I'mm currently working on, althugh the scene isn't actually in the document at this point. Of course, as long as I'm adding filler, it doesn't really matter if the idea doesn't make sense at all or not, now, does it? (Clearly, for my beta readers, it will, but that's another issue.) Now, if only this would inspire me to start working on my NaNo novel . . .

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  19. YES! I love these contests! Often they'll kick-start an idea for a real novel. So cool. and the opportunity to hear from real writers...? It's awesome. Thanks so much for doing this!

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    1. Echo Cynthia...the characters won't leave me alone now. :)

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  20. Exciting! The cogs in my head are starting to whir! :D :D

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    1. Ha! Emily, that's such a great sentence right there.

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  21. Only my second contest to enter, so fingers crossed, see how it goes! :) Definitely excited!!

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  22. I hope mine is better then my self-critic says...

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  23. Love these contests so much, as well as all other contests on this blog! I'm inbetween a WIP that I needed to set aside, and a new one, so this will help refresh my brain. Just sent mine in! =)

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  24. Cool new entry form thingy! I had this irrational fear it was going to eat my submission, but all went well and I'm cool now. :)

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    1. Lol, Rachelle. Glad you gave it a chance :)

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  25. I'm a little uncertain a out this contest. Could somebody jump in and explain me a little bit more? The whole major idea of this contest? Thanks!!

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    1. I'm confused about what you're trying to figure out, Jason. Can you be a bit more specific?

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  26. If you just found out that you had a typo in your writing after you sent it, do I send it again with the typo fixed or just leave it?

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    1. You can just email me and let me know, Jenna. (Stephanie(at)GoTeenWriters.com. I'll get it fixed for you.

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  27. Uh, with this new submission form, we can look at previous entrees... AND their email addresses?!? Is this intentional?

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    1. This does not bode well.

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    2. Ack - sorry. Did NOT know it did that. I've removed that feature. Thank you for letting me know.

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  28. what time on the 3rd does the contest close?

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    1. At midnight Kansas City time. When the contest is over, I'll remove the form.

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    2. Thanks for replying!
      One more question, how often do you have these contests? is it bimonthly or just whenever you feel you want to host one?:)

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    3. Whoops, that sounded rather rude, sorry! i should have worded it, "Is it bimonthy, or do you host them at random times?" Sorry about that!

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    4. Lol, I didn't find it rude at all :) We do them as often as the judges' schedules allow, since they give up a chunk of their writing time to help out. I'm hoping to have another one in January.

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    5. Alrighty! thank you again for replying:)

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  29. Hi!
    I am new here and this is my first major writing contest! I am soooo glad that I am still young enough to enter! I have a question. I will turn 22 next year. Can I enter contests until my birthday?

    ~Robyn

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