Arizona Mystery Writers Jim Martin Memorial Story Contest

Congratulations to our 2016 winners! The next contest starts March 1, 2017.


The annual story contest for 2016 runs from March 1 to June 1, 2016! Anyone can enter – and anyone can win! Send in your short story in mystery, suspense, or thriller style. Entries may be up to 2500 words (about 10 double-spaced pages). It’s loads of fun and a good exercise of your writing skills.

Deadline: June 1, 2016. That date will creep up on you, so start sketching your ideas!

Fabulous Prizes: $200 for First, $100 for Second, and $75 for Third. PLUS winners receive a certificate of acknowledgment from the club, admiring applause at the awards luncheon, your win announced in the newspaper, your winning story posted on the AMW website, and validation as a writer.

How to Enter: Some contest requirements have changed. See the Contest Requirements here for the official rules. The entry fee is only $15 per story, and you can submit more than one story if you like. Entries are judged “blind,” that is, without the judges knowing who wrote the stories. Everybody is equal before the panel of judges! An official Entry Form must accompany each submission. That’s how we connect your name to your story. The Entry Form is available in PDF and RTF formats.

Publication: Contestants retain the copyright to their work. We do, however, require that we be allowed to publish the winning entries on our website. Stories will remain on our website for about a year (until the next year’s winners are published). By submitting your entry to the contest, you are granting permission for this publication.

Who is Jim Martin? Jim Martin was a long-time member of Arizona Mystery Writers. The organization deeply enriched his life, he said. His family left a generous contribution to the club and we remember him by dedicating the annual story-writing contest to him.

Download these official forms: Click on the link below to see the document. To save it on your computer, right click and select Save As… If you need a PDF reader, get one for free at http://get.adobe.com/reader/otherversions .

Contest Requirements in PDF format

Official Contest Entry Form in PDF format

Contest Entry Form in .rtf format that you can type on. When you click on this link the file will be downloaded to your computer. Look for it in your “My downloads” folder.

Past winners: You can read the most recent winning stories by clicking “Winners” under the “Contest” tab on this site.

Cheat Sheet! Want to know what the judges look for? Check out this list of guidelines. Judging Criteria

Questions? Contact the Contest Coordinator.