- Open to students in grades nine through 12 in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Ohio.
- Students will be divided into two age categories: ninth-10th grades and 11th-12th grades.
- Within the two age categories, there will be three genre areas for submission: creative, non-fiction and journalism.
- One entry per student per category is allowed for a maximum of three entries.
- Papers can be submitted that were written as early as fall 2011, provided the student is still in high school by the submission deadline.
- Each submission must be accompanied by a teacher recommendation, and each teacher may nominate as many as two students.
- Submission deadline: Jan. 10, 2013.
- Maximum length: 2,500 words.
The writing celebration will offer recognition of submissions in three categories: creative, non-fiction and journalism. These are defined as follows:
Creative works include those involving personal expression, artistic creativity and imagination. Examples of the genre include works of fiction such as short stories and creative non-fiction such as personal essays, which use many of the same literary and artistic devices as fiction and poetry. Typically creative pieces would come as a result of English class assignments with a focus on the fiction or personal essay genres.
Non-fiction works include expository, analytical, persuasive and technical writing, which generally seeks to inform, explain, clarify or create deeper understanding of a topic within a given academic subject. Rather than emphasizing the emotional, creative and imaginative processes of the writer, non-fiction focuses on logic and reliance on facts, arguments and rhetoric. Typically non-fiction pieces would come as a result of assignments from social studies, science, physical education, art, music, health science or other non-writing disciplines.
Works of journalism would typically be those written for the school newspaper or yearbook. These might include personal profiles, event reporting or topical investigations of current community issues.