Ages: 13-14
Official FW Contest! Homonym Challenge
Amy Sparrow (mod)

The FaithWriters for Kids Contest is up and running. It's for ages 7 through 15. This year we have decided to challenge you a bit more. Don’t worry; you’re going to love it! You will write a story or article between 150 to 750 words. If you go over or under the word count (we will allow a wiggle room of up to five words), points will be deducted from the score. You can write in any genre that you choose, including Bible stories, romance, science-fiction, mystery, historical fiction, poetry, suspense, testimonial, nonfiction or devotion.

It does not need to have a Christian theme to it, but it should be appropriate for all Christian audiences. That means no swear words, no risqué or explicit sensual or gory scenes will be allowed, and if a character does something bad, it should be shown as bad at least by the end of the story. We reserve the right to pull any story from the contest if it is deemed inappropriate.

Instead of a specific topic to write on, we decided to let you choose a set of words to use. The catch is that the words are homonyms: they are spelled exactly the same, but may be pronounced differently, and definitely have different meanings. You need to have the main focus of your story be about the set of words that you choose. It’s not enough to just mention the word in one sentence, but it needs to be a main part of the story.

As you write, we encourage you to think about creating a picture in the mind of your reader. Do more showing and less telling. Use dialog and body language to develop your characters and move the story along. The work has to be yours and yours alone, but we do encourage you to have someone you trust proofread it for you. Every good author knows the importance of having someone else look over their work.

Please write a new story or article for this contest—do not use one that has been previously written. (However, once you’ve submitted to the contest and the results have been published, then you are free to use or publish the story again however you wish.)

Choose one of the following sets of words to be the main theme of your story. Under the title, list the word set you are using. We have given you the definition of the words we selected along with the pronunciation. Notice that one is a noun and one is a verb. All of them have different pronunciations except spring. Some of them have more meanings, but we stuck with only two of the more common ones.

1. Spring: the season after winter or before summer (noun). Spring: to move or jump rapidly (verb).
2. Wind (rhymes with sinned): a natural movement of air (noun). Wind (rhymes with mind): to cause to move in a curving direction (verb).
3. Tear (rhymes with fear): a drop of saline fluid secreted by the eye (noun). Tear (rhymes with bear): To separate parts by pulling apart or to rip (verb).
4. Lead (rhymes with red): A metallic chemical element (noun). Lead (rhymes with bead): to guide, to direct on a course or in a direction (verb).
5. Bow (rhymes with toe): a knot formed by doubling a ribbon or string into two or more loops (noun). Bow (rhymes with cow): to bend the head, body, or knee in reverence (verb).

DIRECTIONS for submitting:
Deadline: April 30 at 9 pm (EDT—which would be New York time)

Email your submission to contact [at] sparrowsflight [dot] net as a Word or Rich Text File (RTF) attachment. The file must contain your name, age, submission title, topic word set, and say whether it is fiction or non-fiction. In the body of the email, include your full real name, pen name (if applicable), your email address, and a phone number where you can be reached. This information will be kept private and only your submission and pen name will be made public.

By submitting to this contest, you are agreeing that you are the author of the work submitted and you are giving FaithWriters permission to publish it on their website or any other media.

WINNERS: Two or three winners will be chosen by three judges, with the age taken into account as they rate each story. The first place winner will be published in the FaithWriter newsletter. First place will also get $25, second place will get $15, and third place will get $10.

Though you will email in your submissions, after the judging we encourage you to post it on this site so everyone can read it!
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