Choice Out Loud, a project of NARAL ProChoice America, is offering cash prizes to writers aged 18-30 for short stories about the role that an unplanned pregnancy can play in a person’s life.
The deadline is Friday, August 30, 2013 at midnight, eastern time (technically 11:59 pm on 8-30-13).
Stories of 500 words or less are eligible for consideration. They may be fiction, nonfiction or “somewhere in between” — but must feature an unplanned pregnancy.
Under the moniker of “CHOICE OUT LOUD: Every Decision Has a Story,” the NARAL ProChoice America contest states:
“An unplanned pregnancy can affect anyone, no matter who they are or where they live….
Choice is a critical thread that connects so much of our lives. We encourage you to think about the diverse reality of life in America, the circumstances that lead to an unintended pregnancy, the different choices women and men make when faced with this situation, and how a person’s decision may influence their future.
You should feel free to use inspirations from your own life or community. Write from the heart.”
Writing is a reward unto itself, but in this case, there are cash awards, too, for the winners: $ 2,000 cash first prize and $ 1,000 awards to two other writers — the finalist that gets the most votes on the Choice Out Loud Facebook and another selected by judges for Honorary mention.
Submissions will be ranked based on quality, creativity and relevance to the theme.
“Millennial writers” qualify if they are at least 18 and no older than 30 at the time of the entry. Applicants must be legal residents of the U.S. A few other rules (see all, here):
- One entry per person;
- The entry must be an original work, not previously published;
- The work must be suitable for publication, must not be defamatory, must not promote racism, bigotry, hatred, physical harm, harassment or invade the privacy of any person.
Submissions are uploaded to an online page, on this link.
Previously, Choice Out Loud released a video, “40: Photographers/Faces/Years of Choice” on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade in January 2013 (see screen shot above). The idea was to show that choice has many faces, according to the accompanying literature, and an interactive site let viewers explore more about the women pictured. Some photographers share their behind-the-lens shooting in six videos, such as this one of Rachel Been.
Of these initiatives, Choice Out Loud explains: “The Millennial generation (born 1980-1991) is 77 million strong. By 2020, we will make up 40% of the electorate. The power of our generation will determine the future of choice for generations to come.” And the campaign also notes: Choice Out Loud is a platform designed to help amplify the stories that young people are telling and add new voices to the conversation. Research has shown that Millennials view abortion in personal — not political — terms. We understand that this is a complex issue and that every woman’s situation is different.”
Final judges for the Choice Out Loud Writing Contest are: Laci Green of Sex+; Maureen Johnson, author; and Rinku Sen, of the Applied Research Center and Colorlines.com. On the panel responsible for the initial review of entries are: Julie Barton; Nourbese Flint; Julia Reticker-Flynn; Tanisha Humphrey;Andrew Jenkins; Shivana Jorawar; Jarod Keith; Emily Likins; Robin Marty; Kimberly Inez McGuire; Kathy Plate; Nayantara Sen; Katie Stack; Ena Suseth Valladares; Kate Vlach; Alicia Walters. Read about them, here.
Submit your story by Aug 30, 2013, 11:59 pm, here.
Follow Choice Out Loud on Twitter — @ChoiceOutLoud.
Posted by Cindy Cooper
Pictured above, screen shot from ChoiceOutLoud video, 40.