Gaithersburg Book Festival launches short story contest -- Gazette.Net







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High school students from across the Washington metropolitan area are invited to submit short stories to the Gaithersburg Book Festival Short Story Contest.

Stories must be no longer than 1,000 words and must start with one of the following three lines provided by Jon Methven, author of “This Is Your Captain Speaking”:

• I’ve seen some odd things delivering food for Ned’s Pizza, but nothing beat the lady that ordered a half-mushroom, half fish-eyeball pie, then hit me with this request at the door …

• The trouble began since my cell number is one digit off from Madam O’Wiggy’s, the psychic, which is how I came to be answering questions about the future to begin with …

• The main thing to know, if pirates commandeer the cruise ship you’re on during family vacation, is that they do much less dancing and singing than in movies …

Authors must be public, private or homeschooled students in grades nine through 12 at the time of entry and must live in Maryland, Virginia or Washington, D.C. They may submit only one entry. The submission deadline is midnight Feb. 21.

Stories must be submitted as a Word document to

Submissions must include the author’s name, address, phone number, e-mail address, school, grade, and English or writing teacher’s name.

Up to 12 students will be selected as finalists, who will have their stories posted on the book festival website before the festival.

The top three stories will be announced at the festival May 17. First-, second- and third-place winners will receive $100, $50 and $25 gift certificates, respectively.

More information is at