News Details


2023 Youth Writing Contest Now Active!

12/01/2022| ECW

Our annual youth writing contest is now active and open for submissions!!

This year's theme is When Darkness Falls.

What do you do when you experience dark times in your life? Is there a dark time you have gone through that you want to share? Do you have an idea about a fictional place with no light, a story about someone with a fear of the dark or do you want to write a poem about nighttime creatures or something that goes bump in the night? The (dark) sky is the limit! We can't wait to read your poetry, stories and visual art pieces!

Here is the link for guidelines and submissions:

UPDATE: The new deadline for submissions is MARCH 31st. Detailed guidelines are available at the above link.

See some of the frequently asked questions below.

What is this year’s theme?
When Darkness Falls

Who can participate?
All public, private and home-schooled Escambia and Santa Rosa County students in grades K-12

What genres are accepted?
Poetry, Fiction and Visual Art

What prizes will be awarded?
First place, second place and third place prizes will be awarded in three categories: poetry, fiction and visual art in elementary school, middle school and high school. An awards ceremony/reading for winning students, their families, and their friends will be held in April. All winners will receive a copy of an anthology book with their work later in 2023.

What are the entry requirements?
One entry per student in one category
Poetry: up to 3 poems or 3 pages of poetry   
Fiction: up to 1,200 words
Legible font, double-spaced Word document

What are the criteria for judging?
We are looking for writing that
…is original, a product of your own experience and observations
…uses vivid, sensory language and imagery
…uses correct grammar and spelling
…adheres to the theme
…has overall effectiveness and impact

When will you be open for submissions?
December 1st! Submissions will be accepted through the website this year, utilizing Submittable's easy-to-use entry program.

When is the entry deadline?  
Your submission must be received by Monday, March 20, 2023.

Where can I submit:
Submit online at this link:

If I have questions, is there someone I can contact?
Charline Barger (850) 485-0818     [email protected]

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