2017 Tucson Festival of Books

Book lovers get an early start to the second day of the Tucson Festival of Books at the University of Arizona on March 12, 2017.

A.E. Araiza / Arizona Daily Star

Entries are now being accepted for the sixth annual Literary Awards Writing Competition sponsored by the Tucson Festival of Books.

The submission deadline is Oct. 31, with judging in three writing categories: fiction, nonfiction and poetry. First-place authors will receive $1,000 in each category. Second-place comes with a prize of $500, third-place $250. Guidelines and access to the submission portal may be found at the festival’s main website: tucsonfestivalofbooks.org

The writing contest has proven to be a popular part of the Tucson Festival of Books, scheduled this year for March 10-11. In its first five years, the contest has received submissions from every state in America and a number of countries overseas.

“The contest and Masters Workshop have been great additions to the book festival,” said Brenda Viner, chair of the festival Steering Committee. “This will be our 10th book festival. It was always terrific for readers, but we wanted it to include writers, too. Now it definitely does.”

The contest and Masters Writing Workshop are connected. Only finalists in the contest are invited to attend the two-day workshop, which is held immediately after the book festival ends. The workshop has received high marks from authors and participants alike.

Five of the book festival’s presenting authors will again serve as faculty for the Masters Workshop March 12-13. Mary Jo Bang, Stephanie Powell Watts, Kevin Canty, Roy Clark and Ron Hansen also will judge the contest finalists.

Workshop participants will also work with Katharine Sands, a well-known literary agent.