Awesome authors contest is back – grab your pens!

Sponsored by the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association (FOPLA), Awesome Authors is one of the Ottawa Public Library’s longest-running and popular programs. The youth writing contest encourages young authors to submit creative writing to win prizes. Any writer aged 9 to 18 and residing in Ottawa can submit their creative work. You can submit a piece of original writing in each of three literary forms: a poem, a comic or a short story – in English and/or French. One submission per person, per category and language.

This year’s edition is seeing a change in one of its categories. What’s new – comic entries can be written by two authors. Submissions are divided into two age categories: 8 to 12, and 13 to 18. Winners will receive cash prizes and, as in previous years, the winning entries will get published in the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association’s (FOPLA) pot-pourri anthology.

(Winners of the 2019 Awesome Authors Contest. Photo: Ottawa Public Library)

OPL is keen to foster creativity and develop writers. The library is offering a series of writing workshops to support young writers in their craft throughout the month of February. The Stittsville OPL Branch is holding their writing workshop with Catherine Austen on February 1, 2020 at 11:00 am.

Published local authors — Catherine Austen, Apollo the Child, Amelinda Bérubé, Karine Perron and Éric Péladeau — will coach, guide and help motivate young writers through these workshops. The same skilled and generous writers will also serve as contest judges.

The deadline for all submissions is February 28, 2020. Entries must be submitted electronically on the contest webpage, or in person at any branch or bookmobile stop. More detailed information and rules can be found online at

Contest winners will be announced, and cash prizes awarded at two distinct ceremonies, one for the 9 to 12 age category and one for those aged 13 to 18. Both ceremonies will include fun and engaging activities to celebrate writing and creativity. The award ceremonies will take place on April 25, 2020 at Meridian Theatres @ Centrepointe.

Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Association (FOPLA) also publish pot-pourri, an annual anthology of the winning poems, stories and comics. pot-pourri makes a great Christmas gift! To get your copy, visit the FOPLA website at



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