National Short Fiction Contest enters judging phase

For Immediate Release
Wed, 11/28/2018


Laurence Deutsch

Manager, Communications

Public Library Association (PLA)

Public encouraged to vote in Readers’ Choice competition

CHICAGO – The submissions are in, now it’s your turn to weigh in. This fall, the Public Library Association (PLA) launched a national short story writing contest, inviting writers across the U.S. to submit short stories on the theme of courage. The National Writing Contest, which ran from Sept. 25 to Oct. 30, is hosted by PLA in collaboration with French publisher Short Édition and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. It is part of the Fostering Creative Community Connections project, an ongoing effort to promote reading and literary joy; community engagement; library programs and services; and creative expression from diverse writers.

A total of 606 qualifying short story submissions were received, all of which can be viewed here. Fiction enthusiasts are encouraged to visit the site to read, "like," and comment on the short stories between now and Sunday, Dec. 9. Registration is required to "like" or comment on the stories. The submission with the most comments and “likes” will be recognized as the Readers’ Choice winner, and two runners-up will be given Honorable Mentions.

For the juried finalists, a monetary prize of $1,000 USD will be awarded to the top selection and $500 USD will be awarded to two Honorable Mentions. The three juried winners will also be given the opportunity to have their stories published in Short Édition’s Short Story Dispensers—ATM-like kiosks that print short stories in a range of genres—around the world. Juried winners and Readers’ Choice selections will be announced on Wednesday, Dec. 12.

PLA is partnering with French publisher Short Édition to support four libraries in Knight Foundation communities to bring short stories to unexpected places via the Short Story Dispenser. These Dispensers are connected to Short Édition’s digital platform consisting of more than 80,000 stories where diverse writers can share their work via an online community. More information about the Fostering Creative Community Connections can be found here.


About the Public Library Association
The Public Library Association (PLA) is the largest association dedicated to supporting the unique and evolving needs of public library professionals. Founded in 1944, PLA serves nearly 10,000 members in public libraries large and small in communities across the United States and Canada, with a growing presence around the world. PLA strives to help its members shape the essential institution of public libraries by serving as an indispensable ally for public library leaders. For more information about PLA, contact the PLA office at 1 (800) 545-2433, ext.5PLA, or

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit

About Short Édition
The French publishing house, Short Édition, was created in 2011. Since then, it has fostered a robust community of international authors, generated more than 25 million readings and has more than 250,000 subscribers on its collaborative platform. Short Édition’s aim is to adapt literature to the modern world by combining short fiction, community and technology. Their Short Story Dispensers, created in 2016, are elevating the role of story in everyday lives.