Writing Contest: Chicago Tribune’s 2017 Short Story Competition Now Open

Photo credit: avrdreamer via VisualHunt.com / CC BY-NC-ND

Photo credit: avrdreamer via VisualHunt.com / CC BY-NC-ND

The Chicago Tribune is now accepting short stories for the 2017 Nelson Algren Literary Awards. It is seeking original and unpublished short stories no longer than 8,000 words. To enter your story in the competition, it must be entirely fictional and not based on actual person, whether living or not.

One grand prize winner will be awarded $3,500, plus possible publication of the winning story in the newspaper. Nine other prizes will also be given.

Deadline for submission is Jan. 31, 2017. Winners will be announced on or about July 14, 2017.

In addition to the grand prize, the following prizes will also be awarded:

  • Four finalist prizes: $1,000
  • Five runner-up prizes: $500

Enter the Writing Contest

If you want to enter the writing competition, take note of the following:

  • You have to be at least 18 years old and a United States resident to enter the contest.
  • You may enter up to two stories only. Each story must be entered separately.
  • Stories must be appropriate for publication in a commercially distributed publication.
  • Your name must not appear anywhere in the story.

The contest pays tribute to Nelson Algren, whose novel, “The Man with the Golden Arm,” won the first National Book Award for fiction in 1950. He was born in Detroit, but grew up in Chicago.

Read more about the Chicago Tribune short fiction writing contest.

Enter the competition; submit your short story here.

Photo credit: avrdreamer via VisualHunt.com / CC BY-NC-ND


Leave a comment


  1. Thanks for sharing this! I wouldn’t have any clue what to write but it sounds fun 🙂

  2. Kayla

     /  January 24, 2017

    Does this contest allow submission to alternate contests at the same time? I don’t see it specified in the rules.

    • Hi Kayla. I didn’t see any restriction on simultaneous submission, either. So you should be able to send your story to other places at the same time. If your story gets accepted somewhere else, be sure to withdraw your entry as soon as you find out. You can withdraw with a click of a button through the submission manager. Good luck and let us know what happens!


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