Personal essay Writing Contests

2014 Writing Contest Focuses

Fiction Attic Press Short Memoir and Personal Essay Contest

What we are looking for: first-person creative nonfiction that tells a good story or inhabits an idea from a very personal perspective. Whether you present your story as a narrative (you, the writer, looking back on a significant moment in your life), or in a more associative essay form (you, the writer, parsing some idea/problem/contemporary issue through the lens of personal experience), is completely up to you.

We chose not to define the contest as one or the other because the lines between personal essay and memoir tend to be so blurry. We seek great writing from a unique perspective, writing that makes us step back and look at something from a surprising angle, writing that makes us feel and think. We get particularly excited about smart, associative essays that connect ideas and personal experience in ways we haven’t seen before.

Please submit short memoirs or personal essays of up to 5, 000 words.


  • The winner will receive $150 and publication in ebook format.
  • The runner-up winner will receive $50 and publication on our website.
  • The second place winner will receive $25 and publication on our website.

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