Contest Rules

Welcome to the annual “Imagination Begins with You…” high school writing contest.


Contest Description: Short story, less than 1,000 words.

Prizes: First place winner receives $300. Second place winner receives $100.

Publication: Winners and most finalist stories will be published in a short story collection.

Deadline: Emailed or post marked by March 15 each year.

Submission: Use the contest entry form (preferred). You may also enter using eMail to (no attachments please, include story in the text of the email) or mail to Brian Claspell – 7608 Trebbiano Dr. – Kernersville, NC 27284. Include: Name, email address, high school and year in school, word count, and title of story.

Winners announced in May.

Criteria: Short stories will be judged on: (a) Creativity/Imagination 50%, (b) Plot 25%, (c) Grammar 25%.

Any genre (fiction/non-fiction) is acceptable.

The Details

• First and second place prizes will be awarded.

• The winning story and other finalist stories will be posted on the “Brian Claspell – Author” Facebook page.

• Winners will be announced in May each year.

• Contest is open to all High School students in the United States who are currently attending a public, private, alternative or home school.

• There is no entry fee.

• Entries must be postmarked or emailed by March 15 each year.

• All entries must be unpublished and 1,000 words or less. Works must be submitted in English. The work must be your original work and you must own the rights to the story (cannot have previously sold it or use copyrighted material without permission). The story must be your own work and not be generated using AI (Artificial Intelligence) tools or other means beyond your own imagination.

• The author (you) will retain all rights to the story, and by entering the contest you grant the contest sponsor the right to publish on the contest web page, Facebook and/or in a short story collection. You and your legal guardian grant permission to us your first and last name as part of the published materials.

• Only one entry per person is allowed. More than one entry may result in all entries being disqualified.

• Every entry should include: Name, email address, high school and year in school, and title of story (NOTE: Your personal information will not be sold, distributed). The stories will be judged blindly, so do not include your name or any other identifier in the text of the story.

• The winner will be announced in May each year. The winner’s will be posted on Brian Claspell’s Facebook fan page “Brian Claspell – Author (Imagination continues here)”.

• Some entries, including winners, may be published in a collection of short stories (Note: Any proceeds from the sale of this collection will be used solely for current and future short story contests and educational charities).

• Stories should not contain degrading material.

• The decisions of the judges are final.

• Note: Every effort will be made to make the contest fair and unbiased. Stories will be read by the judges without any identifier of the author’s name or location. Immediate family members (children and siblings) of the finalist judges are not permitted to be winners.

• Note: Winners will be emailed prior to announcing the winners. Winners will be announced whether the participant is able to be reached or not. If the winner does not respond to the email within 6 months of announcing the winners or fails to cash the winning check within 6 months, the prize money will be considered forfeited.