The theme for the 2022 writing contest is “Holiday Brevity” for all categories. Clear, concise, and to the point writing, with holiday flare.

Categories: Poetry, Flash Fiction, Essay

Prizes: Cash Prizes* may be awarded for 1st, 2nd, & 3rd places in each category. Honorable Mentions may also be awarded. In addition, Best of Show will receive a complimentary pass to a future Rochester Writers’ Conference.


Deadline:  JANUARY 31, 2023

Eligibility Rules: All entries must be original and previously unpublished, and it must be submitted online by the deadline. Author retains all rights. Rochester Writers’ will not publish any submitted work without permission, but retains the right to publish any of the authors’ names and titles of their work. Open to all writers. Anyone under the age of 18 must submit written approval from a legal guardian. All submissions must be in English. Only the title, body of work, and category shall be on the front of the page. Contact information (name, address, email, phone, and word count) must be on a separate page from the entry. All electronic entries must be in a Microsoft WORD DOC or in the text body of the email (do not send PDF files). Winners will be announced in 2023. Prizes and Certificates will be awarded and mailed.

Description of Categories: “HOLIDAY BREVITY”

  • Margo LaGattuta Poetry: 100 words or fewer, any style, one complete poem.
  • Flash Fiction: 100-200 words, one complete story.
  • Essay: 200-400 words, first-person, nonfiction. Holiday Brevity in action.

Word Count: Limit is for the body of work only and does not include the title.

Category: Indicate the category for each entry. Mix and match any of the categories for entry.

Entry Fees: Once submitted, entry fees are non-refundable. Please review the rules BEFORE submission. One entry $10.00 or 2-3 entries $25.00. Payment indicates you are in agreement with the rules of this contest. Payment is made securely through Pay Pal. You may pay with Pay Pal, Debit or Credit Card. You do not need a Pay Pal account to use the service – just select “Pay with Debit or Credit Card” below the login option.

For one (1) entry into one (1) category [$10.00]: CONTEST CLOSED

For two-three (2-3) entries into any category [$25.00]: CONTEST CLOSED

Confirmation: Your email receipt from PayPal will serve as confirmation to entry into the contest.

Submit Entries: Once payment has been made, please email your entries (per the rules above) to rochesterwriters@gmail.com and use the subject line: Writing Contest

Judging: Independent judges will judge the separate Categories. The first place winners from each category will then go in front of a different panel of judges who will pick the Best of Show.

* Certificates and Cash Prizes will be awarded based on the overall number of entries per category. Rochester Writers cannot guarantee the number of submissions per contest and per category. Therefore, certificates and prizes will be awarded based on quantity, as well as quality of entries.