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Summer '22 Contest:

Days in the Sun

Submission Deadline: August 25, 2022

Enter up to three times!
($25 entry fee for each entry)

$300 to the Winning Entry!

Full Contest Prompt: 

This one's as wide open as summer days are long: write 2500 words that capture the idea of Days in the Sun, whatever that might mean to you. See below for the finer details, but be sure all entries are well-written, with proper punctuation and grammar. They should be double-spaced, 12-pt font, and submitted as a MS Word document with 1-inch (or 2.5 cm) margins.


We look forward to reading your entries!

Register Here

Entry Submission Rules

Be sure to comply with all requirements. As with most professional writing submissions, there is no leeway on the rules. Questions? Please contact:

  1. Must be a member of Palm Springs Writers Guild with current status.
  2. Entries accepted between the opening date and submission deadline posted above.
  3. Please enter contest by registering online with a $35 entry fee for each entry; you can enter up to 3 times. Submit multiple entries separately.
  4. Each entry is 2500 word maximum
  5. Must be submitted as a MS Word document
  6. One inch margins, double-spaced
  7. 12-point Times Roman or Times New Roman
  8. Indented paragraphs
  9. Title must be included in the document header. You may not use the contest theme as your title
  10. Pagination must be included in the document footer.
  11. Do not include your name anywhere on the submitted document, only in the body of your e-mail.
  12. Please submit your entry as an email attachment and send it to, no hard copies accepted. You may enter as many times as you like.
  13. The subject line of your email will read the title of your work (not the contest theme name)
  14. Blind submission entries  are judged by selected Guild members who are professional, published authors. 
  15. Winner receives any cash prize offered at the next regularly scheduled General Meeting that occurs at least 30 days after contest deadline. 
  16. Winner may be announced via email, and if permission of the author is granted to PSWG, the winning entry may be published on our website.

Judging Criteria

    1. Adherence to all rules above.
    2. Adherence to the theme or prompt.
    3. Compelling and original plot:
      a. Traditionally consists of a beginning (exposition), middle (development), and end (climax and resolution).
      b. However, if your piece is fiction, very short pieces often consist of a “slice of life.” The narrative should still exhibit a plot-like arc so that the story feels self-contained and complete.
    4. Compelling and original characters:
      a. At a minimum, the viewpoint character has dimension, with a substantial stake in the story’s resolution, making the reader care.
      b. Dialogue is believable and suited to each character.
    5. Consistency of narrative voice:
      a. Point of view; first, second, or third person.
      b. Level of omniscience: omniscient or all-knowing narrator, limited-omniscient narrator, or non-omniscient “objective” narrator.
    6. Fundamental writing skills:
      a. Spelling. Punctuation. Grammar. Usage.       
    7. The writer’s “secret sauce” that, when blended with the above criteria, makes the story stand out. For example:
      a. Artistry and clarity of language.
      b. Creation of mood through setting, description, and detail.
      Distinctness of voice.
    8. PLEASE NOTE THAT IN ORDER TO BE FAIR, WE MUST HAVE AT LEAST TEN DIFFERENT MEMBERS ENTER THE CONTEST (Multiple entries by the same author do not count towards that minimum).

Interested in becoming a PSWG Member? Click this button JOIN

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