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NEA Big Read 2022

National Teen Storyteller Contest: Community Solidarity


Click 'Register' to submit through the Short Edition portal

Submissions Accepted June 1 to July 29, 2022

To submit your story, you will need to create a Short Edition account. Due to technical difficulties, the deadline for submissions has been extended to July 29th.

The Center for Fiction is once again partnering with The Decameron Project for a National Teen Storyteller Contest. Young writers, ages 13-18, are encouraged to submit their best work on the theme of Community Solidarity for a chance to win publication to our Short Story Dispenser, online publication on both our website and The Decameron Project’s website, and more!

One of the most prominent themes of Toni Morrison’s masterpiece, Beloved, is community. The evils of slavery destroyed families and isolated people from their communities. The characters in Beloved form their own communities for support and the theme is explored beautifully throughout. We invite young writers to explore the theme of Community Solidarity in original short fiction. The theme can be broadly interpreted or in direct response to the novel Beloved. The stories should be between 300-1000 words. Submit your story through our Short Edition portal by clicking on the Register button above between June 1st and July 29th, 2022. Winners will be announced in August!

The three winning stories will be uploaded and available through our Short Story Dispenser, located in our Bookstore, in addition to being published on The Center for Fiction and Decameron Project websites. Winners will also receive a Bookstore Gift Card and a Center for Fiction Tote Bag.

  • The first-place winner will receive $100 Bookstore Gift Card and a CFF tote bag.
  • The second-place winner will receive $75 Bookstore Gift Card and a CFF tote bag.
  • The third-place winner will receive a $50 Bookstore Gift Card and a CFF tote bag.

Final decisions regarding winners and finalists will be made by The Center for Fiction staff. The Center for Fiction reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any entries that do not follow the contest rules or contain lewd, obscene, defamatory, or hateful content.


About The Decameron Project

The Decameron Project is a student-run, NYC-based nonprofit that aims to empower students to express themselves creatively and share their stories amidst school closures and other hardships posed by COVID-19.

  • The Decameron Project