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Pennon Mythic Tales Journal CatholicAuthor

Fairy Tale Contest 2022

Contest is now closed Welcome to our first contest month, where all members are invited to send in a short story on a theme. The winners get published in our journal, online, and earn free membership to our community! Your short story submission must be between 1,500 to 3,000 words. All cultures and writing styles welcome! Original stories or retellings welcome.


The first, second, and third place finalists:

  • Win free membership in the CatholicAuthor community
  • Will be published in our printable journal, Pennon.
  • Featured in the Journal

All entries must be submitted by February 28. The winners are announced between March 10-15, 2022 March 7. The judging rounds and finalist announcements will be shared by the 21st of March!

Recommendation: avoid over-told fairy tales. If you choose to retell a popular fairytale, consider putting a new spin on it. Read more about our approach to the realm of fae, and fairy tales.

How judging works

Contestants can be guests, or members of the CatholicAuthor community, or CatholicAuthor Teens.

  • CatholicAuthor staff will review every entry after the deadline, and select the top 10 best for Round 1. (This number may change, depending on the quantity and quality of entries!)
  • The Round 1 entries are put to public vote within the communities to decide on the top 3.
  • The top 3 entries are reviewed by our sponsor or friend of CatholicAuthor, who are not members, to decide on the first place finalist.

High school teen entries are judged separately from the author community.

Honorable mentions may  be published in Pennon, at the discretion of our CatholicAuthor staff.

Contest Details

Please read carefully!

  • All participants will be notified about the contest finalists by email, or in the community. Judges’ decisions are final.
  • We accept work, written in English, from anywhere in the world—regardless of genre, style, or origin—and welcome fiction and genre-bending. Creative is good. Creative with a strong character arc is even better.
  • High School 13+ writers are welcome to submit. It is assumed that your submissions have been approved by a parent or a guardian.
  • Staff members (story mentors) are not eligible for participation.    
  • We read all submissions ‘anonymously,’ meaning name and past expertise does not influence our decision on the merit of your entry.
  • Any stories previously submitted are not eligible for these contests.
  • Contest stories must remain ‘family friendly,’ or PG-13. No graphic violence, sex, or language. These entries may be published in Pennon.
  • We only offer personalized feedback to contestants who make it into Round 1, or Course members.  
  • We only accept original submissions that have not been submitted elsewhere. After the contest, you are welcome to post it on your own blog, submit it elsewhere, and publish it as you will. Your content is your own, but  you are granting the CatholicAuthor staff an irrevocable, royalty-free license to distribute, repurpose, and edit your submission in any medium. This is for publishing online and our print journal.
  • We provide feedback and editing recommendations on every entry that proceeds through the contest rounds. Poorly written jumbles of words, or inexperienced entries, are passed over in favor of entries with demonstrated skill. The CatholicAuthor staff reserves the right to NOT award a winner if the submissions do not reach a publishable standard.
  • A contestant continues to earn their place by incorporating feedback and demonstrating improvement. All our editors have been trained to help guide the development of each piece to reach its fullest potential in keeping with the author’s vision. We value your effort.

Questions? Post them in the community, or send us a message!

Contestants can be To submit your story, visit the CatholicAuthor Journal, create your free profile, add your author account, post your story. If your story qualifies for Round 1, it will be published on the website! Note for members of the CatholicAuthor community: You will be setting up a brand new profile on a new website.

CatholicAuthor is the online community for the modern Catholic fiction writer, 17+. CatholicAuthor Teens is the private community for high schoolers, 13+! Join us each month for monthly genre challengesquarterly contests, and a regular printable journal – Pennon.

Check out our manifesto course, ‘How to be a Catholic Author’ – linked within the author or teen community!

It’s the most exciting way for writers new and old to share works in progress, give and get feedback, build your writing portfolio, make friends and networks, and get mentorship!

this contest is sponsored by

John Paul the Great Catholic University

“Storytelling is at the heart of our university’s mission to impact culture for Christ, and we look forward to supporting and encouraging Catholic authors through this contest!” – Joe H., John Paul the Great Catholic University

Authors: Round 1 Contestants

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