The 2013 Truth in Words Essay Contest

Deadline for entry: March 18, 2013
From Notes & Words: Contest Rules

This year, Notes & Words is partnering with A Band of Wives and Nothing But The Truth Publishing to bring you the Truth in Words essay contest.

The topic of this year’s essay contest is “Transitions” and we expect to see stories ranging from starting a family, recoveries, graduations, aging, career changes/promotions, marriage and divorce.

The maximum length of the essay is 1,200 words. The submission deadline is March 18, 2013, the same day tickets go on sale for Notes & Words 2013.

Up to THIRTY semi-finalists will be chosen by a Truth & Words panel, led by New York Times best-selling author Kelly Corrigan (The Middle Place and Lift). Judging will be based on criteria such as originality, creativity, use of language, and appropriateness to contest theme.

The semi-finalist essays will be published in the next Nothing But The Truth So Help Me God anthology, available in bookstores and online December 2013. Their work will appear alongside that of influential writers, artists and thought leaders such as author and motivational speaker Gabrielle Bernstein, New York Times bestselling author Kelly Corrigan, and 85 Broads founder Janet Hanson.

Excerpts from each of the thirty semi-finalists will also be posted to the Notes & Words Facebook page, where users will vote on their favorite entry. The judging panel will factor those votes into consideration when they choose one grand prize winner. The grand prize winner will have one-on-one phone consultations with:

  • A senior editor at Random House/Ballantine
  • A literary agent at ICM
  • The Executive Editor of O Magazine

The grand prize winner will also receive two tickets to the Notes & Words performance and after-party on May 18, 2013 at The Fox Theater in Oakland, where they will have an opportunity to meet all of the performers.

Contest entries must be emailed to as a Microsoft Word attachment. Please attach a 100-word biography.

One essay submission is allowed per person. Please see or for a complete list of rules.

To read the 2012 winning essay, click here
Click here for a list of Frequently Asked Questions
Click here for the Official Contest Rules

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