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Contests for Students

Short Story Contest for Students in Grades 5-12 who have been nominated by an educator

Topic:  Open Topic


Send us a short story of 500-750 words. This time, you choose the topic. Many teachers and authors tell us to write about what we know. Use your imagination and re-write a fairytale or tell us all the reasons why you like camping and put those reasons into story form. Do you like the first day of school or do you hate it? Do you like adventure? Are you interested in sharing a story about friendship? Do you like animals and will they fit into your story? What about history? Perhaps your story could be set in the Old West. You decide what you want to write, but be creative. Think of something different, and give us an interesting short story. Create descriptive settings and colorful characters. Use dialogue, conflict and solutions, but most of all, use your imagination. Your story will be judged on spelling, grammar and sentence structure, as well as plot, dialogue, conflict and solutions.


Student Instructions: All short stories submitted must be typed and double-spaced. Only one entry per student. Indicate that you are a student by typing the word “Student” at the top of your manuscript. Your name, home address, email address, nominating teacher, school name, city and state, and your grade level must appear on the first page of the text. You can email your essay to or mail it to, USAA, 2528 Palumbo Drive, Lexington, KY 40509.
Short stories must be received by December 18, 2013.


USAA will choose the top three short stories and award the following: First Place $500, Second Place $300, and Third Place $150. We will publish all three short stories in the 2014 USAA National Yearbook. You will become a published author in a nationally distributed book. Publication is an honor that stays with you for a lifetime.


All entries become the property of the United States Achievement Academy and will not be returned.


Good luck to everyone!