Houston Public Media PBS KIDS Writers Contest


Houston Public Media’s 2020 PBS KIDS Writers Contest

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the contest?
The contest begins June 17, 2019. The deadline for stories is Wednesday, March 18, 2020. Your entry must be postmarked by March 18 -or- dropped off in person by March 18. Houston Public Media’s lobby hours are Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Where do I mail my entry?
Houston Public Media
PBS KIDS Writers Contest
4343 Elgin Street
Houston, TX 77204-0008

Can stories be dictated to an adult?
Yes. Children who cannot write may tell their story to an adult who will write it.

Does spelling count?
No. The judges do not consider spelling. ‘Invented spelling’ or ‘best guess spelling’ is okay.

Can I use stickers, clip art, or can I trace coloring book characters to make my illustrations? Can someone else make my illustrations?
No. Your illustrations need to be your own work.

Do I need to bind my story?
No. We will accept your story whether it is bound, stapled, or simply paper-clipped.

When will the stories be judged, and how are they judged?
Stories will be judged April through early May, 2020. Stories are judged on originality, creative expression, storytelling, illustrations, and overall impression. Some things that make a story special include colorful art; a unique story; a story with a good beginning, middle, and end; illustrations that match the story; attention to details; and following the contest rules.

How will I know if my story won?
Houston Public Media will notify finalists and winners by email and, if needed, by phone. The names of finalists and winners will be posted on the contest webpage by May 22, 2020.

Will my story be returned to me?
We will try, but are not required, to return your story to you or your school. We will do our best to make this happen. However, we can’t be responsible for lost or damaged entries or postage due on mailings you sent to us. Certificates and stories will be returned to home addresses if they are individual entries and to schools if they are school entries. Every child who enters will receive a personalized certificate.

Is there a national contest?
No. There is no national contest at this time.

View the full list of 2019 Winners and Finalists

Photo Album of the Awards Ceremony

2019 Finalists’ Book Covers