2015 Writing Contests

MUST register for conference to participate in contests

Registrants may submit one contest entry in each of the categories -- Fiction, Nonfiction, and Poetry.

First Place Winners receive -- $500

Second Place Winners receive -- $250

Third Place Winners receive -- $100

Honorable Mention Winners receive -- $75 tuition break at HRW's 2016 Writers’ Conference


Poetry Judge -- Bunny Goodjohn

Short Story Judge -- Myfanwy Collins

Nonfiction Judge -- Teresa Annas

  • In an effort to encourage emerging writers, first place winners of any of our previous contests are ineligible to enter work into the contest category for which they previously were awarded first prize. For example if you won 1st prize in any of our fiction contests, you may not enter work again in the fiction category, but you are still eligible to enter work into both the poetry and nonfiction categories (provided that you also didn't win first place in one of those contests). If you are unsure whether you are eligible to enter in one or more of the categories, email HRWriters@cox.net.

  • All entries must be unpublished in print, in e-zines, on blogs, and on personal websites and must NOT have placed (1st, 2nd, or 3rd) in ANY previous writing contest outside of HRW.

  • Authors may submit ONLY 1 work in each category.

  • Entries must be typed on 8 x 11-inch white paper, 12-point Times New Roman font, black ink, double spaced with 1-inch margins.

  • Entries must include a removable title page (e.g. paper clipped--not stapled) that contains author’s name, address, category, and title of the work.

  • The title and page number must appear on each subsequent page, in a header to the right. Do NOT include your name in the header. Entries with identifying information any place other than on the removable title page will be discarded. Be careful not to put your name under the title or at the end of the work.

  • Faxed and/or emailed entries will NOT be accepted.

  • Mailed entries must include the conference registration fee (if entrant hasn't previously registered for the conference) and must be in our office by Friday, July 24.

  • Entries, registration, and payment, should be mailed to:
    P.O. Box 56228
    Virginia Beach, VA 23456

  • Failure to follow ANY of the rules will result in disqualification of entry.

  • All decisions by the judges are final, and all winners will be announced on FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, immediately following the keynote address. The first page of each 1st place winning entry will be read to the audience by a professional public speaker, on SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, immediately following the keynote address.

    With the exception of the first place winners, contestants MAY retrieve their contest entries throughout the day on either Sept 18 or 19. First place winners' work will be available for pick up after the readings on September 19. Unclaimed entries will be discarded after the conference; we regret that we can neither store nor mail them.

    The word count for each category is:
    o Fiction: One complete story, not to exceed 2500 words (NO CHAPTERS)

    o Nonfiction: One complete article, essay, or creative nonfiction submission, not to exceed 2500 words (NO CHAPTERS)

    o Poetry: One complete poem, not to exceed 100 lines

    Judges have been requested to offer confidential written comments on each entry; the length and type of comments are at the discretion of the judge.

    HRW is not responsible for lost or damaged submissions.

    Want to honor or memorialize someone special? For a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE contribution of $1,175 or more, you can endow any one of HRW's 2015 contest prizes in that person's name.

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    Our Mailing Address:
    Hampton Roads Writers
    P.O. Box 56228
    Virginia Beach, VA 23456

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    P.O Box 56228, Virginia Beach, VA 23456