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Short Story Contest Details and Rules

The League of Women Voters of Tyler/Smith County's (LWV-TSC) Short Story Contest is open to all writers unpublished in any media. The contest is open to the following genres only: 

  • Action
  • Adventure
  • Historical 
  • Historical Fiction
  • Biographical

The story must align with the theme of the contest, which is consistent with the LWV-TSC purpose, mission, and vision, which is to empower citizens to shape better communities worldwide. In doing so, we wish to inspire a deeper appreciation of our country’s heritage and encourage its citizens to engage in our government. 

THEME  U S Historical Struggle to Vote: 1848 - 1878


  • Cash Prize is $500.00 to the winner
  • Publication in an anthology of selected stories
  • Pride of publication - such a high!  

There are no second or third prizes but selected short stories may be included in the anthology along with the winner.


  • Unpublished stories in any media
  • No publication forthcoming prior to June 2018
  • Entrants must not be affiliated with the LWV-TSC Board of Directors and/or the Judging Committee that determines the stories selected for final judging.

Submit Your Short Story

1. First you must click the "Pay Now" button, which will redirect you to the PayPal website where you can pay with PayPal through a Debit/Credit card.  After paying you will be directed to the place to upload your short story.

2. Then to send your Short Story, go to Upload Your Document to upload Short Story in Microsoft Word file. Be sure to click on Submit.

3. Finally, fill out Author Information form and submit

After you have done these 3 steps, you will automatically be entered in to the 2017 Short Story competition.

All three steps must be completed by midnight February 28, 2018.


1. Make Payment First Here


Submission deadline is midnight February 28, 2018.

Use the online form to enter. Postal entries are not accepted. The fee to enter is $25 per title and is non-refundable. Multiple and simultaneous entries are allowed. International entries welcome.

The story must align with the theme of the contest

Entries must be original and written in English. It also cannot be already published online or in print.

Your story must have fewer than 5000 words (≤ 4,999 words).

Digital submittal:

Title of Your Work_2017 

             Example: Suffrage_2017.

All personally identifying information must be deleted from your entry submission. Please submit your document as a Microsoft Word file.

Entries are accepted only before Midnight (CST) February 28, 2018.

You may voluntarily withdraw your entry from this competition by request via email.  However, the entry fee is non-refundable.

The author retains copyright, but you must allow us temporary and exclusive publishing rights for our anthology, if requested.

The winner must pay his/her own travel expenses to the awards banquet in Tyler, TX.

Award money is unavailable until it is presented to the winner at the awards banquet or by whatever means the contest committee determines.

If your entry is not fully rules compliant, it  will be disqualified. 

Should it become necessary, the League reserves the right to change or delete Contest Rules to ensure that the contest remains fair to all, including the League. Such changes will not alter the eligibility of those already entered in the contest. Any such Rule change will be posted and identified on our website prior to the effective date.


Judging is subjective and anonymous. The decisions of the judge(s) are final. Neither the judges nor anyone connected to the LWV-TSC will enter into individual correspondence relative to any entry, nor will anyone associated with the contest provide critique of individual work. LWV-TSC reserves the right to change judges without reason or notice. Experienced readers will determine which stories are selected for potential publication and final judging.

A list of stories selected for publication will be published soon after the closing date, February 28, 2018. Those under consideration for final judging will be indicated.

The winner will be announced on or before July 4, 2018.

The winner will be contacted directly.