FAQs

Questions about entering

I accidentally submitted my child’s story under my own name. How can I change this?

Log back into Submittable at https://kdl.submittable.com. In the top right-hand corner click on your name > Profile. On your Profile page, you can update the name on the account to your child’s.

My story is longer than 3,000 words. Will it be disqualified?

No, but our reviewers could mark you down for going over the limit. Keep editing!

Does the title count as part of the 3,000-word limit?

No.

What are stories judged on?

They are judged on criteria that includes characterization, plot, theme, setting and atmosphere, mechanics, writing quality, and passion.

Can I resubmit my story from last year?

Yes.

Can entries be nonfiction/vignettes/instructional/educational?

Yes. But be aware that stories are judged on traditional short story elements such as character, setting and plot.

Can entries be poems?

Yes. But be aware that entries are judged on traditional short story elements such as character, setting and plot. Also, if you’re in Grades 6-12 and live in Kent County, consider our annual Write Michigan Teen Poetry Contest, which takes place in the spring.

I am an adult who writes children’s stories. Can I submit a children’s story in the adult category?

Yes. We have had entries in the past for the adult category that were material written for children. While this is acceptable, it does get reviewed against other fiction pieces that may be stronger in some elements such as character, plot or setting.

Can my story contain chapters?

Yes, as long as you stay below the total 3,000-word limit

How much violence and/or swearing can a story have?

We are librarians and do not censor content for the stories.

Do you accept entries with drawings?

While the story criteria for short stories does not include illustrations, we have had submissions that include illustrations in the past. If your story depends on the photos to tell the story, then it will be hard for the reviewers and judges to rate the story based on based on elements such as character, plot and setting.

Do contracted words count as one or two words?

Contractions count as one word.

The submission form asks for an alternative email address. Is an alternative email address required?

An alternative email address is not required. We ask for an alternative address primarily because students typically use their school email address and school spam filters often will prevent our emails from getting through to the students.

Does the subject matter need to be in some way connected to Michigan?

No.

Are the winning stories edited when they’re published in the Write Michigan anthology?

No.

How do you define “part-time Michigan resident” for eligibility?

If you have a mailing address in Michigan, you are eligible to enter.

Questions about voting

Are out-of-state votes allowed?

Yes.

If I submitted a story to Write Michigan, can I vote?

Yes.