Writing Contests

Thank you to everyone that participated in 2023.
2024 writing contest categories and details will be announced in early 2024.

Contest information below shows 2023 details.



  • Maximum 75 lines
  • Any form, genre, or style


  • Maximum 3,000 words
  • Fiction genre

(18 and younger)

  • Maximum 2,000 words
  • Fiction genre
  • Open to 18 years old and younger


  • Maximum 2,500 words
  • Non-fiction genre


  • Wisconsin resident OR
  • Wisconsin student OR
  • Registered participant of 2023 Lakefly Writers Conference

*Members of the Lakefly Conference Planning Committee are NOT eligible to enter


  • Prizes include: 1st place: $100; 2nd place: $75; 3rd place: $50 cash
  • Winners will be announced at the 2023 Lakefly Writers Conference, May 5-6 in Oshkosh.
  • Winners will receive their prize and certificate in the mail shortly after the conference.
  • A PDF of the winning entries will be available on the Lakefly website after the conference.

Submitting your manuscript:

  • Contest submissions will be accepted January 15, 2023 through March 3, 2023.
  • Entries must be original and unpublished; Electronically or self-published works are ineligible.
  • There is no entry fee.
  • Limit one entry per author per category.
  • Entrants should include a biography written in third person, maximum 100 words. If entering the Short Story Contest for 18 and younger please include your age and grade level.
  • Submissions will not be returned.
  • Format: Double spaced; Times New Roman, or Courier; 12 point font
  • Cover page: name, mailing address, phone number, e-mail address, submission title, word or line count, category
  • At the top of each subsequent page: title and page number
    (Example: The Dark Night, page 1 of 3)

Please do not include identifying information, such as your name, on any page other than the cover page.

Electronic Submissions:

  • Send to: LakeflyContests@gmail.com
  • Attach your submission as a PDF file
  • Entries must be time stamped by midnight, March 3, 2023

Mailed submissions:

  • Mail to:
    Lakefly Writing Contests
    c/o Oshkosh Public Library
    106 Washington Avenue
    Oshkosh, WI 54901
  • Entries must be postmarked by midnight, March 3, 2023

Send questions to LakeflyContests@gmail.com, or call the Oshkosh Public Library at 920-236-5203 and ask for Ruth

    Enjoy reading past winning entries:

2023 Lakefly Writing Contest Winners Booklet
2022 Lakefly Writing Contest Winners Booklet
2021 Lakefly Writing Contest Winners Booklet
2020 Lakefly Writing Contest Winners Booklet
2019 Lakefly Writing Contest Winners Booklet
2018 Lakefly Writing Contest Winners Booklet

Scroll to Top