Young Author Contest

2015 FenCon Young Authors Short Story Contest Guidelines

NEW : the Deadline for the Young Author's contest has been extended to September 10th!

FenCon and the Dallas Future Society present our third annual “Young Authors Division” of the FenCon short story contest. We're looking for a science fiction or fantasy story on any topic. The only limits are your imagination and the short list of rules below. Final judging will be done by experienced educators and top industry professionals. The winners may be published on our FenCon website.

 The contest entry deadline is now September 10, 2015.

There is no entry fee - so get writing! And good luck!


Contest results will be announced at FenCon XII in or around Irving, Texas, during Opening Ceremonies on September 25, 2015. All winners will receive acknowledgment on the website. Parent or guardian’s signature of permission will be required for publication of any winning stories.

The first place winner will be awarded $50 plus a certificate, a FenCon 2016 membership, and the story may be printed on the FenCon XII website.

The first two runners-up will each be awarded $25 plus a certificate, a FenCon 2016 membership, and the stories may be printed (at the judges’ discretion) on the FenCon website.

Rules and Regulations:

Entries must conform to the Contest Submission Guidelines detailed below.

This contest is geared toward JH and HS writers, but is open to students in grades 3 - 12 as of the 2014-15 school year. All submissions are included in the one contest.

Entries must be original and previously unpublished science fiction or fantasy, less than 5,000 words long, and the original work of the person submitting them. No "fanfic" or shared-worlds fiction.

Entries must be written in English. Entries containing profanity, violent and/or sexually explicit material are not considered appropriate for this contest and will not be considered.

Persons who have won first prize in any previous year of this contest are ineligible. No person may submit more than three stories. No person may win more than one prize in a given year. Stories submitted in previous years of this contest are ineligible.

Entries WILL NOT be returned. It is important that you maintain a copy for your files.

All decisions of the judges are final.

Contest Submission Guidelines:

Send your entry and a completed entry form by email to

On each page of your story, include only the PAGE NUMBER and your STORY TITLE, not your name and contact information, as described in the guidelines below.

Submissions not meeting proper manuscript format may not be included in the contest.

Submissions must be emailed in Rich Text Format (RTF) to: All major word processors will allow you to save a document as an RTF file.

General Manuscript Submission Guidelines:

  • In the top left corner of every page, put the name of your story. In the top right corner of every page, put the page number.
  • Double space your text. Indent paragraphs by .5".
  • Margins should be at least 1" all around.
  • Use plain fonts. Preferred are Courier and Times (or Times New Roman). Use 10 point type for Courier, 12 point type for Times.
  • Plain black text. No colored fonts.
  • You can italicize and/or bold text, when applicable, or underline it. These styles of indicating emphasis are acceptable.
  • Illustrations are not permitted. Text only, please.
  • Proofread your work. Proofread it again. Have a teacher or parent proofread it one more time. Send only your best work.

If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail

2014 FenCon Young Author Short Story Contest Winners

The winners of our 2014 young adult short story contest were announced at FenCon XI, here on the FenCon website, and in social media.

  • First Place: "A Grim Adventure" by Rachel Levy - 12th grade, Dallas ISD  (Available for download here.)
  • Second Place: "The Rejuvenation" by Varenya Shrikant - 7th grade, Coppell ISD
  • Third Place: "The Not So Diabolical Witch" by Sydney Blashke - 10th grade, Richardson ISD

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