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The Charlotte Writers' Club hosts four annual contests. Writers may enter more than one contest but cannot enter multiple entries into one specific contest. Additionally, contest entries that have placed in any CWC contest are no longer eligible for future submission.

For example, if you win first, second, or third place in the CWC Nonfiction Contest, you may not submit that piece again for the Elizabeth Simpson Smith Contest.  Another example is that you are not allowed to submit the same piece again in the same contest you won previously.

For guidelines, deadlines and area restriction, see general contest eligibility information below, or click on each individual contests for specific guidelines.

Click here for General Manuscript Requirements, Eligibility & Submission Information

All CWC Contests
Contests appear in order of their deadlines throughout the club's year.
Click on the contest name for more details.

Ruth Moose Flash Fiction
Opens: August 18, 2020
Closes: October 20, 2020
Announce Winners: December 15, 2020
Short fiction of up to 500 words.

CWC Nonfiction Contest  (article/essay)
Opens: October 20, 2020
Closes: January 2, 2021
Announce Winners: February 16, 2021
Nonfiction from 750-2000 words.

Poetry Contest
Opens: December 15, 2020
Closes: February 16, 2021
Announce Winners: April 20, 2021
Poetry of fewer than 50 lines; haiku excluded.

Elizabeth Simpson Smith Short Story Contest
Opens: January 19, 2021
Closes: March 16, 2021
Announce Winners: May 18, 2021
A short story between 1500-4000 words.



  1. Follow the Contest Guidelines on the specific Contest Page.
  2. Click here to Submit - This takes you to 'Submittable'.
  3. Find your Contest and click SUBMIT.
  4. Enter the Title and Cover Letter information.
  5. Upload your manuscript.
  6. Select Payment.
  7. Select SUBMIT.
  8. Your entry is saved in the Submittable application.
  9. The judge can see all the submitted manuscripts, but cannot see who submitted any of them.  It is blind judging.
  10. The judge will read each entry and choose 1st, 2nd,  3rd place winners - sending comments to the Contest Chairs for the winners.
  11. After the judge has made his/her decision, notification is sent to the non-winning participants encouraging them to enter again.
  12. Winners are announced at one of the CWC Meetings.

General Eligibility, Entry Fees & Manuscript Requirements


  • Contests are open to all CWC members and to non-member residents of North and South Carolina.
  • Entries must be original and unpublished. This includes blogs, Facebook, websites and other digital media.
  • Entries that have placed in any CWC contest are no longer eligible for future submissions.
  • Contestants who won a CWC contest (1st, 2nd, or 3rd place) the previous year, may not enter the contest with the same genre this year, but may enter other genres.
  • Executive Board members (with voting rights) and Contest Chairs may not enter club contests during their terms of office.
  • Only one entry per contest is allowed.
  • Email Contest Chairs with questions to  Mack Staton or Darrell Horwitz.


  • Do not include any identifying information on your manuscripts. This includes name, website, email address, etc.
  • Entries should be double-spaced (except poetry, which may be single-spaced), in any standard 12-point font, such as Time New Roman, Arial, Verdana or Courier.
  • Title and word count (or lines of poetry must appear in the upper left of the first page of the manuscript.


  • All contest must be submitted, and entry fee paid using 'Submittable' . The SUBMIT button on individual contest will open 'Submittable'.
  • See individual contests for fees.
  • Online payments of submission fees should be made at the time the submission is made.


  • See individual contests for deadline dates.
  • Online submissions must be received by midnight of the due date.


  • See specific contest for individual awards.
  • Awards will be presented at the monthly CWC meeting that is stated in individual contest guidelines. Winners will be invited to read the winning entry at the club meeting. Each winner will have five minutes to read.


Charlotte Writers' Club
Charlotte Writers' Club

P.O. Box 220954
Charlotte, NC 28222
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