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The Preservation Foundation 2019 Contests
For Unpublished Writers
The rules for the 2019 contests are not yet posted.  However, any story posted between September 1, 2018, and August 31, 2019, will be eligible if it meets all the criteria.  I expect the contest rules will be similar to those below for 2018 but that could change.  Watch this space.

Rules for the 2018 Contests ending August 31, 2018, are below...

For purposes of these contests, unpublished writers are defined as those whose freelance creative writing (as opposed to writing for salaried jobs) has never produced revenues of over $500 in any single year.  The Preservation Foundation has sole authority to rule on any writer's eligibility, the appropriateness of stories for entry, contest rules, and all other matters relating to the contest.

Drawing of a pyramid with a treasure inside.

Regular Story Submissions--No Limit

  Just to be clear--while there is a limit of three entries in each of the contests, writers should continue to submit stories not meant for the contests, both nonfiction and fiction, for posting on our site.  There is no limit.  Our purpose is to publish your works and you don't have to enter any contests for us to do that.  

Rules For the 2018 Contests

    This year we will have prizes for four categories of nonfiction: Biographical Nonfiction, General Nonfiction, Travel Nonfiction, and Animal Nonfiction.  See details below if you need clarification about any of these categories.

    Stories must be between 1000--10,000 words in length.

    Stories posted from September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2018, are eligible if otherwise qualified.

    There are no international limitations.  Stories from any country are fine, although they must be written in English.  

    Language in the stories should be free of words or scenes not suitable for children, since many children read the stories and some actually post their stories.

    Just to be clear, we claim no rights to your stories. They are published with your name as copyright holder.  However, since our object is to preserve these stories for future generations, not to put them up one year and take them down the next,
all contest entries will be posted on our web site and must remain on the site for as long as the Preservation Foundation exists.  We will, however, have no objection to the stories being published elsewhere.  Contact us if you need clarification.

    Stories must be submitted as electronic files.  No paper manuscripts will be considered.  See How to submit a story

    No story may be entered in more than one contest.      
    The author should state which contest he/she is entering when making the submission.

    Stories entered in any of our previous contests will not be eligible unless they have been extensively revised.

    A writer may enter up to three stories in each contest.  There are no entry fees. 

    First prize in each category will be $200.  Runners-up will receive $100.  Finalists will receive $50.  Winners, runners-up, and finalists in each category will receive certificates of recognition suitable for framing.

Biographical Nonfiction

    A biographical entry must be a true story of an individual(s) known to the author personally--not a fictional or historical character.  Autobiography, of course, must be the true story about the author's life, the whole or an episode.  

General Nonfiction Contest

    Any appropriate nonfiction topic is eligible.  Stories must be true, not semi-fictional accounts.
Travel Nonfiction Contest    

    Stories should be factual and true accounts of a trip taken by the author or a person or persons know by the author.

Nonfiction Animal Stories

    Stories should be factual and true accounts of an encounter or encounters by the author with a wild animal or animals. These include, but are not limited to, birds, fish, butterflies, snails, lions, bears, turtles, etc.  As long as it is not a pet.


     As we write this, the 2018 deadline is over eleven months away, so we can't be sure if the same process will apply that has served us in the past.  However, if changes must be made we will make them.  If not, then the judging will be done as we did it for the 2017 contests. Click here to find out how that was done.


    We will continue to accept new fictional stories of all types for display on the site.  However, we haven't had a fiction contest since 2000 and won't this year.  We love to read your stories though and are happy to post them. This decision is based on our belief that many internet sites now offer programs for writers of fiction, while very few encourage nonfiction. We believe too that writers of fiction are also capable of writing about real events in their own lives and the lives of those they know.  So get busy and prove us right!


The Preservation Foundation, Inc., A Nonprofit Book Publisher