Posts Tagged ‘fiction and nonfiction writing contest for children’

K-8 Student Writing Contest: Scholastic Kids Are Authors!

Friday, October 14th, 2011

Guidelines   Deadline:  March 15, 2012


Entries must be written in picture book format for both fiction and nonfiction books.
Make sure the text complements the artwork.
Keep text pages separate from illustration pages. The text and illustrations will be combined in the pre-printing stage for the winning books. See format for submissions below.
Before mailing your submission, make sure the pages of your book are in the proper order and number the pages lightly on the back.


Do not use trademarked, brand-name items, or licensed characters and products. (Mickey Mouse, Snickers, McDonald’s, Harry Potter, Scooby-Doo, etc.). The right to use such names is protected by law.
You can create artwork using, paints, inks, crayons, markers, original computer graphics, cut paper, and print processes (such as linoleum block, silk screen, sponge painting, potato stamping, etc.).
To maintain a constant look, it is best not to use too much variation in the media.
Use bright, vibrant colors and bold lines to create reproducible illustrations that make a strong overall impression. In general, pencil drawings are not recommended.
Create illustrations that fill most of the page by centering and enlarging the subject or including an appropriate background. Do not use newspaper print as a background.
Consider making use of contrast in the artwork to create surprise and add life to pictures. Put dark colors next to light colors, thin lines next to thick lines, or use sharply contrasting figures.

Format for Submissions

In order for your entry to be submitted into the contest, you must follow the required format for entries.
All entries must contain illustrated artwork and be received in its original format.
Three-dimensional artwork (pop-ups, flaps, movable parts, plasticine, etc.) will not be accepted.
Artwork may be computer generated only if it is the students’ original creation.
Use one side of the page only. Keep text separate from illustrated artwork.
Artwork and text must be separate. A mock-up should also be included.
Text may be typed, computer generated, or handwritten.
Both text and artwork must be the sole creation of the students.
Based on your design, use either 8 ½” x 11″ or 9″ x 12″ paper (we recommend that you submit your illustrations on quality paper or construction paper).
Do not staple, laminate, or bind the book.

Steps to Organize and Submit Your Entry

1. Organize original artwork in page order (mark page number on back) and place in a folder or envelope. Do not bind the pages.
2. Organize text pages in page order and number on the back to correspond with illustration page. Place in a folder or envelope. Do not bind the pages.
3. Provide cover art and a dedication page. These will not be counted as part of the page count.
4. A mock-up is intended to show how you want your book to look in its final form. Use photocopies of your original artwork and text to create your mock-up. Photocopies may be in black and white or color. Place bound mock-up in a folder or envelope.
5. Include the completed Entry Form. (PDF)
6. Send all of the above in a sturdy folder or box to the address listed on the entry form.
7. Each entry must be submitted separately following the above steps.
8. Remember that the entry should be the students’ work only. Try to limit inserting your opinions. Your role is to offer guidance, mediate, and provide instruction and examples of story elements, such as plot, theme, character development, and setting.

Frequenty Asked Questions

Can an entry be submitted by one student?
No. Each entry must be submitted by a group of 3 or more students. This contest was designed to encourage students to work together as a team. Collaborating as a team helps provide a natural environment to practice editing, teamwork, and communication skills.

Does the title page, dedication page, or picture of the group count as part of the 21-29 pages required?
No. Just the story – illustrations and text.

What do you mean by submitting the artwork and text separately?
If your pages have text on or over the illustrations, each must be submitted separately. Mark the back of each page, i.e. page 1 of text goes on page 1 of illustrations. Prepare a mock-up by making a color or black and white copy to show how you want the final product to look.

When are the entries due?
All entries must be postmarked by March 15, 2012 to be eligible for the 2012 Competition.

Do we send in the entry form separate from the entry?
No. Each entry must have an entry form attached to it. The signature of the parent or guardian signature of each student participating in the entry must be submitted. Copies may be made of the entry form.

Does the project coordinator have to be a teacher?
No. A librarian, teacher’s aide, or parent can be the project coordinator. The project coordinator assures that the entry adheres to the rules and regulations and that the spelling and grammar are correct. The story and illustrations must be the students’ work.

Can the team consist of different grade levels?

How many entries can one school send?
There is no limit, but each entry must be done in groups of 3 or more students.

Will I be notified when my entry is received?
Entrants will receive a letter of acknowledgement and a certificate of participation by April 15.

Will I be notified when the winner is selected?
Yes, by May 31 we will announce the winners for the contest by sending a postcard to everyone who has submitted an entry. RESULTS ARE ALSO AVAILABLE ONLINE.

How can I purchase the Kids Are Authors books?
The Kids Are Authors books are $4.99 and can be purchased at a Scholastic Book Fair near you or from our School Resource Catalog by calling 1-800-799-7323. Some past winners may be out of print.

For more information and specific guidelines visit: