Loudoun County Student Writing Contest – “It’s All Write” – with Cash Prizes


Newspaper Staff

In 1839, Edward Bulwer-Lytton expressed the notion “the pen is mightier than the sword.” But it seems other writers expressed the same notions: 

  • George Whetstone, in Heptameron of Civil Discourses, 1582, wrote “The [dash] of a Pen, is more [grievous] than the counterbuse of a [Lance].”  
  • In Hamlet, 1602, Shakespeare had Rosencrantz utter the line “… many wearing rapiers are afraid of goose-quills and dare scarce come thither.” 
  • In 1621, Robert Burton’s The Anatomy of Melancholy states “From this it is clear how much more cruel the pen may be than the sword.” 
  • And in 1796, in a letter to Thomas Paine, Thomas Jefferson wrote: “Go on doing with your pen what in other times was done with the sword.”

Writing is a powerful tool. A recent poll suggests that about 30% of work is accomplished through written communication. Writing skills are essential to success in most college and career settings. Furthermore, writing is expression, and can expand the mind to explore faraway places and incredible worlds within the collective imagination.  

Writing helps us connect with ourselves as well as those around us. Statistics claim 93% of teenagers enjoy writing when it is personal, for themselves, and not necessarily part of class curriculum. Here’s your opportunity to write: 

It’s All Write – Short Story Writing Contest for Teens, is an annual contest for students from grades 6-12. Prizes will be awarded to both middle school and high school competitions: $200 for 1st place, $100 for 2nd place, and $50 for 3rd place. Entries will be accepted through March 1st at library.loudoun.gov/IAW. 

Please open the link for submission requirements: https://library.loudoun.gov/iaw