2014 Young Authors’ Contest

The 3rd annual Bangor Public Library Young Authors’ Contest is here! The purpose of this contest is to give encouragement and recognition to young authors’ achievements in creative writing.


  • Contest begins July 15, 2014, and ends August 31, 2014.  Transcripts can be dropped off at the Bangor Public Library.
  • Contest grade level categories will be as follows: grades K-1; grades 2-3; grades 4-5; grades 6, 7, and 8; and grades 9-12.
  • The story must be original and the author’s own work
  • Kindergarten and 1st grade stories must be written in the author’s best printing, using black ink.
  • Grade 2-12 stories may be typed, word processed, or hand-written in black ink.
  • The book should have a cover page that states the title of the book. A substantial illustration may be included on the cover page, but is not required.
  • If using illustrations or graphics, it should be each young author’s original work — no clip art. Other author-computer generated drawings can be used. Drawings should be bold.
  • An option (but not a requirement) is for the young author to add an author’s page at the end of the story. A photo or drawing of the author may be included; and a mini-bio telling about the author’s interests, family, or future goals.
  • All book pages, including cover, must be 8-1/2” by 11”.
  • All entries must be submitted in duplicate. If the book wins, one copy of the manuscript will be returned to the author, and the other will be sent to the printer for professional publishing. 
  • Winners will receive a complementary hardbound copy of their own book! In addition, a hardbound copy of each winner’s book will be placed on display in the Bangor Public Library, and become part of the Library’s permanent collection.
  • The following information must be written on the envelope or box containing the manuscript: the grade the author is entering into in August, 2014; the author’s name, phone number, and address.
  • Winners will be notified, and the young authors and their families will be invited to a book signing at the Bangor Public Library. Light refreshments will be served.
  • Entries will be judged on:
  1. 1.       Organization – Clear sequence of detail; clear beginning, middle, and ending.
  2. 2.       Language Usage – Vocabulary, word choice, descriptive language, and should be grammatically correct.
  3. 3.       Originality/Creativity – Fresh, memorable, or unusual storyline.
  4. 4.       Editing – Few or no spelling and/or mechanical errors.
  5. 5.       Overall Impression – The following may enhance the story quality: drawings and illustrations, neatness, and an appealing cover.





Elements of Story Writing

The following guidelines will help answer questions and improve the quality of your story.  Each young author should incorporate some, or all, of the elements of story writing listed at the end of this page. However, imagination and enthusiasm for writing are the most important!

FICTION: The book is to be a creative short story. It may be based on facts, but must include imaginative elements.

AUDIENCE:  The story should be appropriate for K-12

SETTING: The time (when) and place (where) in which the story takes place. Is the setting important to the story? 

PURPOSE: The story should be written to entertain, to express feelings about something, or to describe a personal experience.

CHARACTERIZATION: Who are the main characters? What do they look like? How do they act and talk? Do they have any special traits or habits? Describe their temperaments (determined, angry, sad, happy, clever, mean, curious, etc.).

CLIMAX:  Have the story events build up to a climax.

PLOT: What are the conflicts in the story? How are the conflicts resolved and who solves the conflicts? Each detail or action must contribute to the outcome of the story.


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