11th grade, New Jersey
First Place — The ground is perpetually damp, the buildings creak, and the sun seems more like a hole forced into the sky...
The Thing in the WallIfe Olatona
17 years old
Washington D.C./Olun, Nigeria
Second Place — If we whispered the name of a dead person, it winked like a friend. If we suppressed our fright and kept quiet...
The PumpkinLamar Mitchell
9th grade, Illinois
Third Place — It was a dark and stormy October night in the beautiful state of Wyoming and Farmer Tim was about to go to bed...
Floor MeditationsDominique de Castro, 11th Grade, New York
First Place — Dust clouds hung in the air. Sun rays wove between each particle in an intricate lattice, covering the study...
Skeleton LoveJoseph Caluya, 12th Grade, Nevada
Second Place — The stares of the cruel eyes penetrated through me, transmitting a notion that my body was some sort of anathema...
16 SiroccosMary Lawrence Ware, 10th Grade, New York
Third Place — My mother says menopause is full of pain. Hot flashes, anger, despair, insomnia, a surge of untamable emotions...