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Announcing the 2024 Kids' Choice KidLit Writing Contest WINNERS!

Hello, friends! Did you wonder if you would ever hear from me again?? Did you start to think that maybe I had taken all your entries and run away with them?? Did you question if there were actual kid judges really reading your work??

Well... I promise that I really HAVE been running this contest behind the scenes.

It's just that I've ALSO been co-running the PB Rising Stars Mentorship Program with the ever-patient, always wonderful, Ebony Lynn Mudd AND doing school visits for my debut PB, The Monster Above the Bed, AND prepping to launch two new books into the world within a month of each other, AND signing something exciting. All while trying to be as present as possible as a wife and momma. I've learned that I should not do all of these things at once. Thank you for your patience and understanding as I did not announce finalists this year and instead am going straight to the winners.

A future post will include all honorable mentions as well as information on which entries made it into round 2 of the judging. For now, I will only be announcing the winners. (Compiling the honorable mentions takes a little bit longer, so that will come later.)

But first, I want to take a moment to share something really exciting with you all! As I prepare to launch my debut Middle Grade NF book, KID-VENTORS: 35 REAL KIDS AND THEIR AMAZING INVENTIONS, I am extremely excited to announce that I will be hosting not one, but TWO "meet the inventors" webinars during launch week. This is seriously thrilling. Six of the inventors highlighted in my book will be joining me to talk to young budding inventors about what it takes to become a true inventor, how they got where they are today, and what kids can do to meet their own dreams. One of the events is during the school week to appeal to teachers and classrooms and the other is on a Saturday to snag individuals, friends, and families. BOTH events will be recorded and available to registrants after the event. Check out the details below and consider registering for one or both of these events:

I truly can't wait to introduce you all to these incredible kid inventors (some now grown up, some still very young). Space is limited, so don't delay! Register now through the links above to secure your spot!

These events are 100% FREE and do NOT require a preorder or any social media posts. Of course, it would mean the world to me if you preordered your own copy, requested the book from your local library, or helped spread the word on social media.

KID-VENTORS is available anywhere books are sold.

Alright... that is enough self promo for one day, don't we think?

And now... The real reason you are all here today.

Announcing the 2024 Kids' Choice KidLit Writing Contest WINNERS!

This year, I decided to have the number of winners in each category proportional to the number of applicants in each category. That means we have:

TEN Picture Book Winners

SIX Middle Grade Winners and

FOUR Young Adult Winners

If you are one of the winners listed below, HUGE congratulations! Real KID readers chose your work as some of their favorites. Please be patient as I finalize details of your prizes. You will each receive an email from me within the next 10 days with details on your prizes and how to claim.

If you are not one of the winners today, please know that this contest, like all others, is extremely subjective. In fact, for each kid who chose a favorite, there was another that said "I didn't love XXX." Taste is wide ranging, even in kid and teen readers! Just because your name isn't on this list doesn't mean your work is not valid and wonderful. And kids still need YOUR stories! So please don't give up and please keep working on your craft. If you're ready to invest in yourself and your art, consider applying to be a PB Rising Stars Mentee!

And now...

Drumroll please...





The YA Winners are:

4th Place: JADED SEAS by Brooke C Thomas

3rd Place: FAME MONSTER by Kaylen Stewart

2nd Place: ARRESTED DECAY by Ashlee MacCallum

1st Place: THE CHILDREN OF EARTH by Sabrina Jess

The MG Winners are:

6th Place: HOPE IS THE THING WITH WINGS by Ranjeeta

5th Place: GLOBETROTTERS by Trenise Ferreira

4th Place: THE GHOST OF WINDWOOD COUNTY FAIR by Hallie Christensen

3rd Place: CALLIOPE'S NOTEBOOK by Sayuri Stabrowski

2nd Place: JUST A WISH by Rowena Zahnrei

1st Place: THE SECRET OF STERLING VALLEY by Laura Polasek

The PB Winners are:

10th Place: SURE! by Sheri Bentley

9th Place: THE VERY SCARY BOOK by Jessica Russo

8th Place: CHEWY by Thelia Hutchinson

7th Place: THIS IS NOT A STORY by Julie Hauswirth

6th Place: PIGEON'S ART by Stephanie Maksymiw

5th Place: THE TOOTH GARYS by Amanda Shayne Aszman

4th Place: NORM'S LAST STRAW by Lynn Leitch

3rd Place: ONE I CALL "PAPA" by Todd Beeton

2nd Place: BLACK CAT by Lauryn R Hill

1st Place: HOW TO WALK A BANANA by Lauri Meyers

WAHOO! What a great list!!

Congratulations to all of our winners! I will be in touch ASAP about your prizes (query opportunities and agent AMAs) so keep an eye on your email! In the mean time, make sure to snag a "winner" graphic here to display proudly on social media!

Readers, I hope you will take a moment to comment below and congratulate our winners!

And to everyone who entered, definitely allow yourself to feel all your feels, but truly you should be SO proud of yourself. Real kids read your stories and there is a good chance that one of them chose your words as their favorites!

Make sure you are subscribed to my newsletter so that you don't miss the honorable mentions announcements either!

Wishing everyone a happy and healthy March!

15 comentários

Deborah Ishii
Deborah Ishii
22 de mar.

Congratulations to all the winners! I'd love to read your winning entries but haven't been able to find them anywhere! I love so many of your titles and I'm looking forward to reading your stories! Help!!!! I'm also looking forward to the Honorable Mentions announcement!

Again, congrats!


Lauri Meyers
Lauri Meyers
21 de mar.

So excited that kids read my work and liked it. There is some something very special about this contest you've created Kailei. Thank you for ALL the work you have been doing for kidlit and I'm excited to hear about this thing you signed:)


Lucky Williams
Lucky Williams
19 de mar.

I'm happy for all the winners--and for everyone who polished their story to enter! A big thank you to the judges, too!


Mother Moon
Mother Moon
19 de mar.

Congrats to all the winners!!!


Enjoy those awesome query passes, all you winners!

To all of us who didn't see our names up there, remember, it doesn't mean your work is bad. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and send your baby out again! Never stop trying. One day, you will be glad that you kept on. The hard work is worth it. Go writers!

P.S. A little blog promo here: If you go to my blog on, you might just find a carefully handpicked list of writing contests with deadlines in April. :)

P.S.S. Thanks so much for such a fun contest, Kailei!

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