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Short Story

A brief examination of a subject in prose usually expressing a personal view or interpretation of a subject or topic.


  1. Only one (1) notarized Short Story written only by the contestant, with six (6) copies of the notarized original should be submitted on or before the specified deadline. The top of each page must include the contestant’s name, page number and unit name and number.
  2. The Short Story should have a single story line without subplots, no more than three or four characters, a single viewpoint and a short time scale. The story must be typed, double spaced and between 1000 and 1500 words.
  3. The contestant must be prepared to answer questions by the judges.

Note: The deadline for submission of National registration documents is the first Friday in May. No materials or copies will be accepted at the National Competition.

Contestants Will Be Judged by the Following Criteria

  • General Merit  (25 pts)
    1. Ideas  (single storyline, no subplots, 3-4chracter, single viewpoint (2 at most), short time scale)
    2. Organization  (consistent writing style, consistent mood ,tone and space)
    3. Wording  (appropriate language, brief descriptions)
    4. Flavor
  • Mechanics   (25 pts)
    1. Usage
    2. Punctuation/Capitalization
    3. Spelling
  • Overall Effect  (50 pts)
    • Minimum background, concise dialogue, no lengthy preamble, no contrived ending

Click Here to Submit an Online Application

 Click Here to Download the Requirements and Judging Criteria for all ACT-SO Categories.

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