For this contest, we will be reading the stories through the lens of craft, and selecting winners based on the strength of the story in each of the following three craft categories: Setting, Dialogue, and Character. One story will be awarded in each category, and each of the three authors will receive $1000 and publication. Finalists will also be noted in each category. So send us that story that really shines in one (or all!) of these categories. We can’t wait to read your fiction! Submit here.

Third annual Indie Author Day

Have you ever said to yourself, “I should write a book”? Come meet some folks who have done just that at Indie Author Day.

The third annual Indie Author Day will be held on Saturday, October 13, 2018. The event will be hosted at the Alliance for the Arts, 10091 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers, FL, from 9 am until 1 pm during its weekly Greenmarket.

Just what is an “Indie Author” anyway? The term applies to authors who have self-published a book. Ever since Amazon launched its self-publishing platform in late 2007, indie publishing has grown exponentially. In 2017, of the 1,000 top-selling eBooks on Amazon, 284 of them were written by self-published authors.

But indie publishing isn’t strictly digital. Indie authors also offer books in print form. Local authors who write in a wide variety of genres will be on hand to sign their books and to answer questions about their publishing journey.

Spots are still available for authors who want to join in the fun. Please contact for more details. GCWA members please also contact Irene Smith at in order to coordinate our participation.

We look forward to seeing you on October 5, 2018 at the Creative Writing Education Today Symposium to be held at the University of South Florida, Tampa.

The Symposium is free, the panel sessions promise to stimulate interest, inquiry, and discovery; and the audience discussion and thoughts will be published in New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing (Taylor and Francis) in 2019.  Please register for the Symposium, using the quick “Register here” link.



Dr. Dianne Donnelly
Creative Writing Pedagogy
Assistant Dean, Office of Research and Scholarship
College of Arts and Sciences
University of South Florida
Dr. Graeme Harper
Creative Writing Pedagogy
Dean, The Honors College
Oakland University, Rocjester, MI

Lona Root Haskins

Lona Root Haskins, a member of GCWA, has been invited to speak Friday, Sept 14th at 1:00 at Lakes Regional Library.

Lona came to the literary world very late in life. In 2014 at age 79 she published her collection of grief poetry, Grief to Celebration: The Journey Through the Loss of My daughter, Dianna Louise.  In 2015 at age 80 she published her parents’ memoir, Humble Roots: Earl and Caroline. Lona will be discussing her extensive research into the events of the early to mid 1900s and the impact of these events on her parents’ lives.


For writers of romance, or other genre fiction with romantic elements (mystery, suspense, women’s fiction…)
Sponsored by Southwest Florida Romance Writers

Entry deadline October 1


  • Contemporary (including Women’s Fiction)
  • Historical
  • Paranormal/Science Fiction/Fantasy
  • Young Adult
  • Romantic Suspense


  • Unpublished authors
  • Traditional or self-published authors who have not published in the category they’re entering within the past 5 years
  • Entries must be the author’s original work that has not been published or contracted to be published.


The first 20 pages of an unpublished manuscript featuring romantic elements.

FEE: $30

Visit for more information.
More questions? Contact

Open Mic Night

Join us for our Open Mic night hosted by the Hostess with the Mostest Jeanette Hickman! This is an opportunity for artists of all mediums to express their talent: Music, live painting, stand-up comedy, spoken word, poetry, reciting, acting, dancing, any form of creative performance is welcome to our Open Mic Night! Craft beer from Riptide Brewing Company, wine, and light bites will be served as part of this exciting evening!

Doors open at 6:15 p.m.
Performer sign-up list opens at 6:30 p.m.
Performance segments are 5 mins each

Indie Author Day 2018

Mark your calendars! The third annual Indie Author Day will be held on Saturday, October 13, 2018.

On this one day, libraries and organizations around the world welcome local indie authors, writers and their communities in for a day of education, networking, mingling, writing, open mics, panels and so much more! We’re proud to offer free registration to all participants!

Welcome to the 16th annual Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest. Submit published or unpublished work. $4,000 in prizes.
Please submit during April 15-September 30, 2018.
• TOM HOWARD PRIZE: $1,500 for a poem in any style or genre
• MARGARET REID PRIZE: $1,500 for a poem that rhymes or has a traditional style
• The top two winners will also receive one-year gift certificates from our co-sponsor, Duotrope (a $50 value)
• Honorable Mentions: 10 awards of $100 each (any style)
• Top 12 entries published online
Length limit: 250 lines per poem. No restrictions on age or country. Please click here for full details. Read the winning entries from the 15th contest. The results of the 16th contest will be announced on April 15, 2019. Fee: $12 per poem.