Institute of Children's Literature presents



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Middle Grade Historical Fiction

It's fun to tip our toes in the past, but can you make relatable to today's kids? 

This contest is your chance to show us your middle grade fiction chops in a historical setting. You pick the historical time frame and be sure the story is aimed at 5th-8th grade (10-14-year-olds).

Your entry can be excerpted from any section of the novel but it must be previously unpublished and no more than 750 words. 


Why Enter?

 $1,300 Cash Prizes 

  • 1st prize = $1,000 
  • 2nd prize = $200 
  • 3rd prize = $100 

Online Workshop

All entrants are invited to a FREE instructional online workshop with our esteemed judge and the Director of the Institute of Children's Literature and Institute for Writers.

Free Critique

Winning entries will be workshopped by our judge to help writers understand what worked and what could be improved to make it submission-ready.

Here's what you need to know...

  • Entries should be no more 750 words. 
  • Entries can be excerpted from any part of your middle grade novel. 
  • Entries should be aimed at readers between ten- and fourteen-years-old.
  • Entries must follow manuscript submission guidelines as stated on our Contest Rules page HERE.
  • Entries must be submitted via our online form by midnight Pacific Time on September 15, 2019. 
  • There is a $19 reading fee per manuscript to enter the contest.
  • You may enter more than one manuscript but each entry requires a $19 reading fee.
  • Every writer who enters will be invited to the online workshop for free where the winning entries are critiqued. (Non-entrants pay $7.)
  • Minimum age to enter the contest is 18 years of age.

Submissions will be judged on clarity, originality, potential in the market, appropriateness for the age range, and your ability to match standard manuscript format (double spacing, clear contact information, no creative use of fonts).

The winning entries in this Middle Grade Historical Fiction Contest will be announced at a live online workshop within 90 days after the contest closes. All contest entrants will be notified of the event details by email and be invited free of charge. (Non-entrants may attend for a nominal fee of $7.)

This is a great opportunity to build your writing and submitting skills!

I'm In, Let's Do This >>

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