Friday, September 17, 2021

NYT opens 2nd annual narrative writing contest


New York Times editor Michael Gonchar writes:

When you think of The New York Times, you probably think of front-page news, but The Times also has a long tradition of publishing personal narratives, and you can find new ones online nearly every day if you know where to look.

In fact, over the years there have been columns dedicated to personal narratives on themes as varied as love and family, life on campus and navigating anxiety.

With that inspiration, we decided to host our first-ever Personal Narrative Contest for students last fall. We invited teenagers to tell a story about a meaningful life experience in 600 words or fewer, and the entries came pouring in: over 8,000!

Well, this year we’re back with our second annual contest, open to middle and high school students for submissions until Nov. 17. We asked three winners of last year’s contest to annotate their winning entries as a way to demystify the writing process for other students. These three students also read their stories aloud and discussed three “writer’s moves” — dropping the reader into the scene, using metaphors, and writing conclusions — they used in their pieces.

We think these new resources will be a powerful tool for teaching writing, and they build on the rest of our narrative writing collection: a narrative writing unit plan, a list of 550 narrative writing prompts and a series of mentor texts.

Once again, we can’t wait to read students’ stories!

And with that, the Times announced the opening Tuesday of its second annual personal narrative writing contest, open to middle and high school students. Full details are available from the Learning Network pages.

So if writing is something you enjoy, give it a shot. And even if you don’t enter your personal narrative in this contest, the resources from the Times provide very helpful tools for good writing in the general sense.

Paul Katula
Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Recent Posts

Study finds increasing suicide rates among Black girls

Why are Black adolescent girls committing suicide at increasingly higher rates in the US? Could it be an effect of racism and prejudice?

On the day front pages changed forever

800 students quarantined in Baltimore County

Band Day 2021 in Urbana-Champaign

Student reviews: Kanye West’s Donda