This year we received 200 applications from young writers across 7 states from over 35 different cities. Thanks to our star judges we have 23 winners and 58 finalists.
1st-4th GRADE STORY JUDGES
David Shannon: Internationally acclaimed picture book author and winner of many awards including Book Sense Best Picture Book, Golden Kite Award, and New York Times Best Illustrated Book List.
“Loved these stories – so imaginative and well-written. Usually it’s one or the other, even with grown-ups! It was really a pleasure to read them.” –David Shannon
Jennifer Fosberry: New York Times best-seller and author of the Isabella books.
“Wow what a difficult yet enjoyable task to judge these stories. I found it interesting to see that different authors showed different strengths and also different places to improve and grow in their craft. They were all so good. I am impressed at the level of story-telling and writing that I have seen with the Young Inklings competition.” –Jennifer Fosberry
1st-4th STORY WINNERS
- Anabel Orozco –“Kai’s First Kiss/El Primer Beso De Kai” (Grade 1)
- Dillon Mareth – “Mike’s Beaver Tail” (Grade 3)
- Natalie Sharp – “The Skating Goat” (Grade 4)
- Sahana Srinivasan – “The Mystery of the Disappearing Pets” (Grade 2)
- Samantha Vargas –“Dusty” (Grade 2)
- Sydney Goodwin – “Unspoken” (Grade 4)
- Zoe Friedman – “My One-Inch Tall Life” (Grade 2)
5th-8th GRADE STORY JUDGES
Laura Ruby: Author of Bone Gap and winner of many awards, including the Printz Award.
“I was so impressed with the range of stories submitted, everything from historical fantasy, to folk tale, to humor. But more than that, I was impressed with the sheer talent of these young writers.” -Laura Ruby
Mandy Davis: Author of forthcoming middle-grade novel, Superstar.
“What a treat it was to read the writing of these talented young writers! While the pieces were all very different from one another, they all had one important thing in common: the unique voice of each writer shined through on the page.” –Mandy Davis
5th-8th GRADE STORY WINNERS
- Aidan Wen – “Earth and Sky” (Grade 8)
- Benjamin Hayes – “Whalewatching Past Westerndon” (Grade 5)
- Erin Gray – “Saving Billy” (Grade 6)
- Judge Cantrell – “The Ghost of the Underworld” (Grade 6)
- Manasi Garg – “The Girl with the Light-Up Shoes” (Grade 7)
- Maya Lopez – “A Journey to a New Land” (Grade 7)
- Samantha James – “Hocus Pocus” (Grade 8)
- Xiomara Guevara – “Silver Lining” (Grade 6)
1ST-4TH GRADE POETRY JUDGE
Tim McCanna: Author of 6 forthcoming picture books including Bitty Bot which comes out in October 2016.
“What an incredible range of poetic work from these Young Inklings! Sometimes quiet, sometimes fierce, sometimes super funny. But always fresh, inventive, and engaging. Exceptional work from an exceptional group of young writers.” —Tim McCanna
1ST-4TH GRADE POETRY WINNERS
- Colin Chu – “Ten” (Grade 2)
- Kendra Mills –“Leaves” (Grade 1)
- Jasper Micheletti – “Beautiful Long Curly Hair” (Grade 2)
- Juliana Baltz –“Whale Eating Contest” (Grade 3)
5th-8th GRADE POETRY JUDGE
Marilyn Hilton: Author of Full Cicada Moon and Found Things, winner of the 2015-16 Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature.
“Poetry expresses the breadth and depth of the human experience using an economy of words. As a reader and writer of poetry, it was a joy to see how these young poets chose to express their personal and unique perspectives of the world. All the writers deserve huge congratulations for their work, and I felt truly privileged to be able to read them.” – Marilyn Hilton
5th-8th GRADE POETRY WINNERS
- Cianna Brown – “Races” (Grade 7)
- Karishma Miranda – “Broken Beyond Repair” (Grade 6)
- Rafael Stankeiewicz – “Long Lost Love” (Grade 8)
- Sophia Zalewski – “The Storm Inside Her” (Grade 8)
Congratulations, winners! Be sure to check your email. You’ll be meeting your mentor and start working on your revisions soon! To see the list of finalists click here.
These were tough decisions. We were highly impressed with all of the talented writers who submitted their stories and poems, and can’t wait to tell each of you exactly what we loved about your work. Soon, all applicants will receive a special letter from our team about your submission. Be sure to watch your email inbox–we’ll be sending those letters throughout the month of April.