The Story Embers Poetry Contest

Do you have a story burning inside of you? The Story Embers Poetry Contest recognizes Christian poets proficient in the art of verse. It provides the opportunity for recognition of the writer’s work, and the chance for finalists to have their work published on our website. You can read more about the rules of the contest and how to enter below. You can also read the winners of past contests here.


First Place Winner will receive $100 cash and publication on the Story Embers blog.

Second Place Winner will receive $50 cash and publication on the Story Embers blog.

Dates & Deadlines

Contest Opens: August 1, 2022 at 10 AM EDT.

Contest Closes: August 31, 2022 at 11:59 PM EDT.

Winners will be announced on or before October 28, 2022.

Submission Instructions

Please read these guidelines carefully and refer back to the list before entering. We reserve the right to disqualify entrants for not following our criteria, and our decisions as judges are final.

    Word count must be no shorter than 100 and no longer than 500. You may choose any style of poetry you wish (free verse, rhyming, sonnet, etc.) provided that it fits within those perimeters.

    The story must be original and unpublished. If it has previously been posted online (on a personal blog or elsewhere), that classifies as published. You may acquire the help of beta readers and critique partners to refine your story, but coauthored pieces are not permitted.

    Entries must be submitted as Microsoft Word documents. If you don’t have access to that program, you can prepare your text in Google Docs and export to Word.

    Type your story’s title at the top of the first page, but do not include your name anywhere in the document (that information will be collected on the entry form). Use 12 pt. Times New Roman. Center and left alignment are both acceptable.

    Entries must be text only. Images, graphics, or illustrations (whether enclosed in the file or submitted separately) will be rejected.

    Entries that contradict our Statement of Faith or contain objectionable content (such as gratuitous violence, profanity, or sex) will be disqualified.

    Only one entry is allowed per person. Once a story has been submitted, we will not accept edits or exchanges, so be sure to polish your work thoroughly and upload the correct document.

    Judging Process

    Poems will be evaluated on the basis of rhythm/meter, theme, imagery, word choice, and originality. Daeus Lamb and Cindy Green will be acting as judges.

    Daeus has the twin ambitions of reaching thousands of readers with his fiction and helping other Christian artists do the same. In pursuit of these visions, he’s the author of God of Manna, serves as a board member here at Story Embers, runs Excelsior Writing School, and hosts a YouTube channel dedicated to analyzing the fantasy genre. He loves juggling words. He also loves people, fictional or real (but he doesn’t juggle them).



    Cindy is a forest-wandering, poetry-scribbling stargazer with messy notebooks and messy thoughts. Despite her love for all of God’s creation, sunflowers and stars have a way of sneaking into both her writing and her heart. As a self-professing ambivert (or a living contradiction), she deeply feels both the beauty and fallen state of the world. Through her words, she hopes to describe the indescribable and form personal connections with people while reflecting adoration for her Savior and a passion for everything she touches.

    Publication Rights

    The finalists are subject to our Editorial Policy, and Story Embers retains exclusive use of the winning poems for 3 months after publication. Once that time span has elapsed, authors are free to reprint their pieces elsewhere.


    A $10 submission fee must be paid at the time of entry. This fee is nonrefundable. After you fill out the form and click Proceed to Payment, you’ll be redirected to PayPal to pay the fee.

    Patrons who pledged at the $8 tier or above may enter for free. Type your name/pseudonym and genre in an email, attach your story, and send it directly to us at brianna@storyembers.org. All other participants must submit their stories via the entry form.


    Entrants must be subscribers to our newsletter. If you haven’t signed up yet, you may do so by visiting our Resource Library.

    The following individuals are ineligible to enter the contest: Story Embers board and staff members, writers, interns, and forum moderators, as well as the previous year’s first place winner.

    Contact Information

    Have a question about the contest? Email brianna@storyembers.org. 

    If you place in the contest, we’ll contact you a few weeks prior to October 28th. Otherwise, due to the volume of submissions we receive, we won’t be able to follow up with you on the status of your entry.

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