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"Write On!" Short Story Contest for Grades 3-5

The annual "Write On!" Short Story Contest for Grades 3-5 accepts story entries each spring. This year, the contest will be open from January 20-February 17, 2019. All writers, their friends, and families are invited to a Final Celebration on Sunday, April 14, 2019, featuring a published children's author, once the contest ends. The top three writers in each grade will receive an award and each writer will receive a certificate of participation. Last year the contest received over 100 submissions from Ann Arbor and beyond!

HOW TO ENTER THE CONTEST 1. Check out the CONTEST GUIDELINES! 2. Write your story! (Need some help? Here are some WRITING RESOURCES.) 3. Email your story to or bring a paper copy to the Youth Desk Downtown 4. Attend the Story Celebration once the contest is done to eat some snacks, meet other kids, and hear our featured guest speaker- a published children's author! Questions about the contest may be directed to Elizabeth at or to the Youth desk: 734-327-8300.


As a fun addition to the writing contest for 2019, the library is looking for a new name for our "Songsters" program! Library Songsters is an innovative program that incorporates performance arts into a traditional school setting, primarily for grades 3-12. AADL brings in musicians, poets, actors, songwriters, dancers and storytellers to enhance the curriculum set forth by the teachers. The goal is to teach these creative arts techniques while reinforcing the foundation of a traditional lesson plan. Artists visit the classrooms for 3-4 in-class sessions, then the students have a final performance of the piece that they've created at the Downtown library. AADL is seeking a new name for this program that incorporates all sorts of art forms and enhances the idea of collaborating to create a piece of art. Please email any ideas you have for re-naming Library Songsters to The winner will receive a $50 prize!

For more information about the Songsters program in general, email

2018 "Write On!" Short Story Contest

Thank you to all of the writers who participated in the 2018 "Write On!" Contest! The full text of all stories will be available soon.

3rd Grade Winners:

1st Anika Raman "The Aliens" PDF  
2nd Mila Hedly "The Girl's Wish" PDF  
3rd Anna Bogle "The Arcade Adventure" PDF  

4th Grade Winners:

1st Livnat Brody "The Journal in the Attic" PDF  
2nd Jessica Primus "Bully to Buddy" PDF  
3rd Tess C. Fleming "Who Haunts My House?" PDF  

5th Grade Winners:

1st Kate Castrogiovanni "The Writer's Block" PDF  
2nd Abby Re "The Noodle & Poodle Chronicles" PDF  
3rd Iris Pous "My Four Seasons" PDF  


2017 "Write On!" Short Story Contest

Thank you to all of the writers who participated in the 2017 "Write On!" Contest! Read the winning stories below or read all of the stories from 2017.

3rd Grade Winners:

1st Hajime Yamazaki "Hess and Chopsticks" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Livnat Brody "White and Lilac'" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Ashley Han "The Rise of Banana Cream Pie" PDF Text-Only Version

4th Grade Winners:

1st Tove Vivekanand "Nia’s Pride" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Abby Re "The Arix Dimension" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Kate Castrogiovanni "Traplandia" PDF Text-Only Version

5th Grade Winners:

1st Tai Karir "The Robot Arm" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Katerina Selene Freudenberg "Eleven" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Emerson Wernimont "Amazing" PDF Text-Only Version


2016 "Write On!" Short Story Contest

The 2016 "Write On!" Contest received 104 submissions from Ann Arbor, Dexter, Ypsilanti, and beyond! Read the winning stories below, or read all of the stories from 2016. 3rd Grade Winners:


1st Maddie Gaines "Building an Adventure" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Raymond T. Kangas, Jr. "Benjamin Franklin 'in the Future!'" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Lila Jomaa "The Stowaway" PDF Text-Only Version

4th Grade Winners:

1st Selene Freudenberg "The Moon Greater than Every Other" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Rachel E. Perlman "Elca Padme John" PDF
3rd Anita Gaenko "Bells" PDF Text-Only Version

5th Grade Winners:

1st Haley Switzer "The Locked Waterfall" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Aspen Fields "The Last Sunwealder" PDF
3rd Rita Ionides "The Magical Kingdom of Mathematica" PDF Text-Only Version


2015 "Write On!" Short Story Contest

The 2015 "Write On!" Contest received a record number of 138 submissions! Below are the 2015 winning stories. 3rd Grade Winners:


1st Yotam Chopra "The Kids Who Saved the World" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Graham Baker "Sam the Talented Dolphin" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Selene Freudenberg "How Hairy Pot Er Met Innygay Easlyway" PDF Text-Only Version

4th Grade Winners:

1st Elijah Hatcher-Kay "Lost and Found" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Finnian Cook "Believe" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Caroline Robinson "Going Through Time" PDF Text-Only Version

5th Grade Winners:

1st Camille Hu "The Girl"
2nd Fionnuala MacKercher "Grey" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Madeleine Rodgers "Nelson and Ariana's Nako Odyssey" PDF Text-Only Version


2014 Short Story Challenge

Around 100 young writers turned in stories for the 2014 3-5th Grade Short Story Challenge! Below is a list of the 2014 winners. To read all entries of the 2014 contest, click here. 3rd Grade Winners:


1st Kaden Thornton "The Magical Book" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Eliza Ann Van Ee "Save the Slaves!" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Emma Li "Dragon Friends!" PDF Text-Only Version

4th Grade Winners:

1st Georgie Branch "Pop" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Karinne Tennenbaum "One Thought after Another" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Fionnuala MacKercher "The White Wolf" PDF Text-Only Version

5th Grade Winners:

1st Marisa Redding "The Meadow Song" PDF Text-Only Version
2nd Makayla Harris "Hutch McLaw: The Case of the Sparkling Torch" PDF Text-Only Version
3rd Rachel Amanda Eglinton "The Impossible" PDF Text- Only Version


2013 Short Story Writing Contest

Around 100 young writers turned in stories for the 2013 Short Story Writing Contest! Below is a list of the 2013 winners. 3rd Grade Winners:


1st Emma Crownover "My Secret"
2nd Alma Moga "The Story of the Talking Hamster"
3rd Mohammed Hamoud "Allians-A True Story"

4th Grade Winners:

1st Arjun Purohit "A Weird Day at the Science Museum"
2nd Abby Dobson "Winston and His Ears"
3rd Anabellee Jones "Blueberry Girl"

5th Grade Winners:

1st Ashlee Freeman "Pastel's Journey"
2nd Krishna Davis "The Boulder Block"
3rd Jenna Allman "Sallie Sweetwater and the Nebraska Disaster"