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2023 First Chapter Contest Finalists

Announcing our 2023 First Chapter Consult & Contest Finalists & Winners

Writing Away is so happy to announce the Top 10 Finalists and Winners of our 2023 First Chapter Consult and Contest. We appreciate all of our entrants and the talent that was displayed. There were a lot of wonderful chapters, and we look forward to our 2024 contest. Congratulations to our 2023 finalists and winners.


2023 First Chapter Contest Winner-- Erica Sage--Dead Things


2nd Place Winner--Raquel Levitt--The Seer


Remaining Top 10 Finalists--

Matt Varga--Currency of Souls

Bridget Verhaaren--Giving

Nina Pak--Mora's Arrival

Harriet Garfinkle--Fast Forward/Slow Rewind

Hollie Swapp--But First, a Phoenix Burns

Gini Holland--The Year She Wasn't There

Judith Haran--Friend of the Family

Amy Purcell--The Great Dying

Honorable Mentions--

Nancy Alvarado--Apples

Sheliah Schodlbauer--We Rise

T.J. Knight--The First Aquamancer

Margaret Kasimatis--Beyond the Yard

Elizabeth McNally--The Power of Touch




2022 First Chapter Contest Winner-- Erin Evans (Penname Nikki Black)--The Northern Flame


Remaining Top 10 Finalists--

Jodie Smith--Jubilee Bells

Sheliah Schodlbauer--Maggie's Run

Deborah Westervelt--Above and Below the Canyon

Asher Sund--Instruction Manual

Danielle Reiff--Leading with Love: A Peacebuilder's Diary

Maxie Jane Frazier--B*L*U*F*(F)

Matt Varga--Flicker

Lilli Gross--A Wall in the Hall

Peggy McDonald--Life in the A-Zone

Honorable Mentions--

Sabrina Robinson--Northbound

Lindsey Parkinson--Good Girl

Elizabeth Lynd--Bury Me in Pigeon

Words from a contest entrant:

"I'm so thankful for the feedback your judges gave me over the summer on my prologue. It led me to rewrite it and look at the scene from some deeper places in my heart."--Cherisa Jerez

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