Skip to main content
Add Me To Your Mailing List

HomeCreative Writing Contest




Purpose:  This contest is sponsored by the Wilmette Optimist Club to give young people an opportunity to express themselves through the process of creative writing.


Eligibility:  The contest is open to 7th and 8th grade students who attend school within the Village of Wilmette. 


Deadline for submission:  November 30, 2013


Awards:  One first place winner ($250), one second place winner ($150), one third place winner ($100).  Winners will be notified in late December, 2013 or early January 2014.

Note:  Winners will be asked to attend an Optimist meeting with their parents or teacher to read their essays.

Questions?  Contact Ken Paxson at 847-251-7438 or or Diane Burge at 312-259-8040 or  

Where to Submit:  Preferred:  emailed as .pdf or Word documents to  Teachers may also contact Ken Paxson for pickup at your school.  Entries may also be mailed to:  Wilmette Optimist Club, PO Box 8051, Wilmette IL 60091.




  1.  All entries must be original short stories. No poems or other writing styles will be considered.  Entries must be written in English.


  2. Short stories should be typed double spaced using either Arial or Times New Roman fonts in 12pt and should be between 4-5 pages in length, not including cover page information. We estimate this would be roughly 1,000-1,500 words. Do not print your entry on both sides of the paper.


3.   All stories submitted should have the title and a page number indicated on each page.   DO NOT PUT YOUR NAME ANYWHERE OTHER THAN THE COVER SHEET.


4.   Cover page information should include the following information:  a) The title of the story, b) Your name, c) your school and your grade level, d) your home address, e) the name of your parent(s) and their phone number(s) and an email address. The cover page must be submitted as a separate .pdf or Word file.


5.   The release on the following page must be signed by you and a parent or guardian and submitted with your entry.











Contestant Agreement:

I have studied the rules of the contest, and I will be bound by all of the requirements.  I understand that my entry will not be returned and I grant the Wilmette Optimist Club the right to publish my entry to their membership, to the Pioneer Press newspapers, to official Optimist websites, or to other publications they deem suitable, without payment.




Contestant’s Signature:







Parent or Guardian Permission:

I give my permission for my child/ward to participate in this contest. If my child is selected, I grant the Wilmette Optimist Club permission to publish my child’s name and general information and to use his/her image or likeness in press releases, official Optimist websites, publications, or other media outlets identifying him/her as a winner in this contest.









Relationship: ­­­­­­­­­­­­________________________________________