Writing Contest

The Leslie-Walker Writers of Promise Contest 

The Leslie-Walker Writers of Promise Contest is open from February 10 – April 14, 2017. See below for submission details.

The KMWP announces our Leslie Walker Writers of Promise contest winners for 2016:

Cassidy Ginn from Thomas Crossroads is our Elementary School winner for an essay about a trip to the beach and making “drip castles” for Oma. Teacher: Jodi Smith

An excerpt from Cassidy’s submission:

I wanted to see what the view from the balcony was like so I went outside. “Woah,” I said as I looked down from the balcony. “I know, wow,” said my older sister Jillian. As we looked at the sparkly, rippling waves of the blue-green ocean I thought, beautiful.

Sophie Simpson from Moses Middle is our Middle School winner for her poem about finding place in a person. Teacher: Samara Frank

An excerpt from Sophie’s submission:

I was born with a wild heart

And a restless soul.

Wanderlust surged through my veins,

It rushed from the top of my head to my gypsy feet.

Bodie Fox from Armuchee High is our High School winner for his composition about home: “I Keep My Heart in My Pocket” Teacher: Emily Mowrey

An excerpt from Bodie’s submission:

Near the center of the rolling sea of grass and sharp, jagged cliffs of pine trees, lies a long, gravel driveway that used to be the companion of a collapsing fence. The driveway snakes parallel to John’s Creek for nearly half of a mile to a hill of red Georgia clay topped by a log-and-chinking cabin, my home.



Submissions are accepted February 10 – April 14, 2017. Digital submissions accepted via link below or email. We are sharing our lesson ideas for writing about place, so please visit our site as we update our contest page with downloadable lesson ideas. Interested in sharing your own writing prompts and lessons? Email mary.stillerman@gmail.com.

Springboard lessons for the LWW0P contest:

Writing about Place

Leslie Walker strived to create community in her classroom through writing about place. This ongoing effort was realized through her dedication to teaching writing to her students. To continue Leslie’s work, we invite teachers to prompt their students to experiment with writing about a specific place. What they express in their writing may be factual, imagined, or a combination of both.

Teachers are invited to submit up to 20 of their students’ most interesting pieces to our contest, or individual students may wish to submit a piece. Such writing may not be the most polished, and it may come from students who do not usually think of themselves as exceptional writers.

Students are encouraged to write about the experience of a place that holds significance to them. This open-ended topic serves teachers across the curriculum. The student’s voice should be evident throughout the piece. The following suggestions may help guide students to write about place, but any interpretations of the idea of place are welcome.

  • Social Studies and History teachers may invite students to write about place during a particular historical moment, on maps, or with data sets.
  • Science teachers might ask students to use what they know about certain scientific principles or methods in which place would hold significant meaning.
  • Math teachers may ask the students to write about place as it applies to numbers or mathematical concepts.
  • Language Arts and English teachers may use memoir writing to help their students explore the idea of place through their unique memories and experiences.

In this annual contest, we ask that students’ writings be typed or neatly written in dark ink, up to 1000 words in length, and mostly error-free. Parent permission slips must also accompany each piece. For each submission, include the writer’s name, address, phone number, grade level, and school.


LWWoP 2015 - advertSubmissions can be digital by individual students — CLICK HERE

Submissions can also be mailed to the KMWP:

Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project
Kennesaw State University
440 Bartow Avenue
English Building
Room 121
Kennesaw, GA 30144

OR, submissions can also be e-mailed to kmwp@kennesaw.edu as an attachment

Download the Parent Permission Letter to send along with your submission.

LWWoP Parent Permission Form

Call the Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project office at 470-578-2170 if you have general questions

and/or e-mail Mary Ann Stillerman, contest director, at mary.stillerman(at)gmail.com

2015 Winners

  • Elementary School: “Fangs of Light: The New Leader” by Kylan Barbieri (Teacher: Susie Pittman)
  • Middle School:  “A Place Void of Time” by Gwyneth Smith (Teacher: Dan Lloyd)
  • High School: “The Tree” by Megan Adam (Teacher: Derek Wright)

Gwyneth Smith (center)


Megan Adam (center)







Winners and their teachers were recognized at the KMWP Annual Awards Banquet on June 25, 2015.