2020 Put Pen to Paper Short Story Contest for Teens

Accepting stories from April 1 to July 11, 2020

Do you have a knack for writing stories? Enter our annual short story contest for the chance to practice your craft, win great prizes, meet a published author, and network with other young writers. See below for contest details, rules, prizes, and to submit your story. Happy writing authors!


Prizes are awarded to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners in two Grade divisions: The Junior Category (Grades 6 to 8), and the Senior Category (Grades 9 to 12). Winning entries are also published on Milton Public Library's website.

1st Place: $100.00 Chapters Gift Card

2nd Place: $50.00 Chapters Gift Card

3rd Place: $35.00 Chapters Gift Card

Contest Rules

One entry per student.

Entrants must reside or attend school in Milton.

Students must be finishing Grades 6-12 to enter, and must submit their work in the appropriate category: Junior Category (Grades 6-8) or the Senior Category (Grades 9-12).

Short stories must not exceed 2000 words in length. Word count must be included in the entry form.

Entries must be typed, single sided, double spaced, using size 12 Times New Roman font. The title should appear at the top of the first page. All pages should be numbered. 

Please do not put your name on your work, as it will be judged anonymously.

All works submitted must be original. Illustrations and poetry will not be considered. Proper punctuation, grammar, and spelling are very important.

All entries must be submitted electronically via the online entry form, no later than July 11th, 2020 at 11:59pm. 

Entries that do not meet these requirements will be disqualified.

The decision of the judges is final. Winners will be announced at the end of summer Awards Reception. 

By entering this contest, you are consenting to have your work, name, and photograph used for promotional purposes in local media and online. Please see a staff member for any further questions. 

Don't Forget to Proofread!

In addition to a great storyline, judges also look for proper spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Have a friend or a family member read over your story for you to help catch any errors. This will help take your story from good to great, and will help the judges to better see all your creative talent. 

Submit your Story

Submit your story online, in either a .doc, .docx, or .rtf format. Don't forget to submit your word count in addition to attaching your story. Please refer to the rules above to ensure your work is complete and ready to compete.

Attend the Awards Reception

Winners will be announced at the end of summer awards reception in August (details to follow). The evening will feature an author talk by YA Author S.K. Ali and presentation of the awards. Friends and family are welcome.