2018 Writing Contest

Entry Requirements

The annual Public Safety Writers Association Writing Competition is open to any paid member in good standing of the Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA). All entries must be the original work of the entrant. Entries in the categories listed below will be judged by published authors in the public safety writing field. Entries will be returned to entrants, if a stamped, self-addressed envelope is enclosed with the entry.

Note: These are preliminary rules–please wait until January 1, 2018 for complete dates and requirements.

Submission Instructions

  • All entries must be accompanied by a completed entry form, that you can find here or entry forms may be obtained by writing:PSWA Writing Competition
    2024 Falcon Court
    Bellingham, WA 98229
  • To qualify for entry, an original copy of the work must be submitted:
    • For published works: a copy of any book in which the entry is the entire work or a portion of a work. A tear sheet from a newspaper, magazine or other publication will be accepted, although the publication in its entirety is preferred.
    • For unpublished work: a copy of the work in its entirety.

Submit a hard copy of the work to the physical address above, and either an e-mail or CD copy. Include a link or URL where your work can be viewed or purchased, or to your personal website. E-mail your entry to marilynolsen@policewriter.com.

The Process

Entries, winning or non-winning, may be accompanied by a short critique by the judges. Awards will be given at the annual PSWA conference. Entrants need not be present to win.

Entry fees

$10 per entry
Checks should be made payable to Public Safety Writers Association


Awards of first, second, third and honorable mention will be available in each category, although not all places in a given category will necessarily be awarded. The awarding of places will be at the discretion of the judges. All winners will receive a certificate and five (3) PSWA “Award Winner” labels (upon request) to place on the award winning work. Additional labels can be purchased from PSWA for $1 each.

Competition Categories

All entries in the competition must be somehow related to public safety subjects or issues. Both published and non-published works are eligible for entry in the competition, but will be judged in separate categories. Contestants may enter in more than one category and submit up to three entries in each category. The categories are:

  • Fiction: Books, Short Stories, Flash
  • Non Fiction: Books, Creative-Non-Technical, Creative-Technical, Technical Manual
  • Poetry
  • Screenplay


All entries must be postmarked by May 1, 2018 to be eligible but may be submitted anytime after January 1, 2018.


2017 Writing Contest Winners Posted

2 Responses to 2018 Writing Contest

  1. It’s still in doubt as to whether the book will be published by the conference date, though it will be unpublished as of the submission date. The obvious plan is to publish soon, so which category should I enter

  2. Edmund Rodriguez says:

    How should the entries be submitted? Should I mail the hard copy to the Creswell, OR address and email to the policewriter.com address? How do I show the fee in the email?

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