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Nick Adams Short Story Contest Offers Prize for Student Writers

Published: December 10, 2009

Student entries are now being solicited for ACM's 38th annual Nick Adams Short Story Contest, which offers a prize of $1,000 for the best story by an ACM student. The prize, named for the young hero of many Hemingway stories, was given by an anonymous donor to encourage young writers who are students at ACM colleges.

Kokoro Lee

Kokoro Lee, winner of the 2009 Nick Adams Short Story Contest.

The results of the competition will be announced in early May and the $1,000 prize awarded to the winner. Last year, "A Flawed Vivarium" by Kokoro Lee, a student at Macalester College, was awarded first prize.

Each entrant may submit as many as two stories to their campus English department. The story need not have been written especially for the competition, but it cannot have been previously published off-campus.

Each department will select the four best stories to send to the ACM office, and a small committee of faculty drawn from colleges throughout the consortium will then select the semi-finalists. The winner will be chosen by a professional writer.

The final judge for the 2009 Nick Adams Contest was Chicago visual artist and writer Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry: A Novel. Past judges have included other prominent writers, such as Maya Angelou, Saul Bellow, Larry Heinemann, Bharati Mukherjee, Joyce Carol Oates, Anne Tyler, John Updike, and Stuart Dybek.

Stories must arrive at the ACM office, from the ACM college English departments, no later than March 5, 2010. For more information or to learn your on-campus submission deadline, please contact the chair of your college's English department.


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