The contest is launched in the spring, participants write their masterpiece over the summer and the winners are announced in the fall. This year’s theme was mystery fiction and participants were challenged to write and illustrate their own original mystery using Lulu Junior IlluStory kits, and they did not disappoint!
The contest is open to any young authors between the ages of 7-18. Entrants are divided into 3 age groups and a first place winner and runner-up is chosen from each group. Winners and runners-up receive cash prizes. One of the winners is chosen as the Overall Contest Winner and they get a cash prize as well as having their book sold by RRC. A royalty stream is created and they receive proceeds from the sale of their book. Pretty sweet, right?
The submissions are judged based on a pre-established rubric that is available to the authors prior to their registration.
After lots of mystery-solving and much debate, the judges have picked this year’s winners! Check out the winners below and a few highlights from the winning books:
Age Group: 7-10
1st Place: Wyatt A. of Wisconsin – Mystery in Maple Hollow
- Wyatt’s story is about forest creatures losing their socks, inspired by a drawing he did of a sock monster!
Runner Up: Evangeline P. of California – Zulu’s Mysterious Egg
- Evangeline’s story is about a chicken who lost an egg. Her book includes vibrant illustrations and characters full of personality!
Age Group: 11-14
1st Place: Alyssa M. of California – These Heartless Hands
- Alyssa’s story is a medieval murder mystery set in the year 1315. Her book cover also includes cool lettering designs.
Runner Up: Ariana F. of Washington – The Midnight Rider
- Ariana’s book tells the tale of a princess, her castle & a long lost brother. Her book cover is mysterious and the hilarious intro draws you in!
Age Group: 15-18
1st Place and Overall Contest Winner: L.K. Marstall of Iowa – Harriet Mayden and the Thorburn Detective Agency
- L.K’s complicated story of family intrigue plays on famous mystery writing with loads of historical references. She writes witty banter and characters with accents that made it fun to read.
Runner Up: Cassidy N. of Florida – The Lotus Larceny
- Cassidy’s story is about a stolen Egyptian artifact with an impressive vocabulary and demonstrates systematic problem-solving skills.
Congratulations to all of the winners! We are so proud of all of these young writers. We cannot wait until next year! Check back on RRC’s website in the spring to participate next year!