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Short Story Season is Back!

Short Story Season is Back!

It’s time for our annual short story competition again! Please have your child complete the story using the story starters below. (We provide one for grammar students and one for secondary.) Grammar school entries should be 200–500 words (excluding the prompt). Secondary school entries should be 800–1000 words (excluding the prompt). All entries must include student name, grade, parents' name, e-mail address, phone number, city, and state. Format must be Word Doc. Please email submissions to and use the subject line “Short Story Competition.” Submissions must be received by 5:00 p.m. EST on March 15, 2021. Judging will be based on these age groups: 

Grades 1–3 

Grades 4–6 

Grades 7–9 

Grades 10–12 

One winner in each grade category will receive a $50 gift certificate and their piece will be published in the April and May Epistulas.

*Note: Stories can be adapted to be about male or female characters and names can be changed.

Grammar School:

“Don’t forget your lunch, honey!” her mother yelled as Ava ran out the front door without it. She skipped back inside to retrieve her lunch bag.

“Whoops,” she said, “Guess I was so excited I forgot.”

“I figured,” her mom said with a smile. She kissed her on the head and Ava sprinted out the door. This was going to be the best day ever; she was going on a field trip to the coolest place in the world:

Secondary School:

My mother always told me to stay away from the lake. When I was young,  I assumed it was because she was afraid I would drown. Or perhaps there were snapping turtles lurking in the muddy water. But her fear persisted even as I grew older and learned to swim. I complied with her demands to stay away; I even grew accustomed to riding my bike along longer routes to avoid it. It didn’t bother me at all, not until yesterday, when my curiosity got the best of me.