yeah write super challenge #1

welcome to the yeah write super challenge!

Welcome to yeah write’s very first super challenge. If you’re already familiar with our weekly challenge grids, you know they’re a great way to learn, grow and connect with our community of writers, but the super challenge is where it all comes together, where your hard work and practice pays off – literally pays off, I mean, with prizes! If you’re finding yeah write for the first time, welcome aboard. We hope you’re along for the ride.

Yeah write has been a vibrant community of writers for over five years, and we’ve never missed a week in all that time – 270 and counting, as I write this. Now we’re adding the next level of writing competition and we couldn’t be more excited to start at number one! Let’s kick this thing off with a bang as for our first super challenge we go back to where it all started in the dark ages of, er, the early 2010s: creative nonfiction.

By hobvias sudoneighm -, CC BY 2.0,

The yeah write super challenge is a prompted challenge, where writers compete to complete the best work of short creative nonfiction in a single weekend. Prompts are released on Friday, and the completed work must be turned in by Sunday night.

The competition is run in three rounds. Half the writers will move to the second round of competition, and approximately ten writers will advance to the final round of competition. All competing writers will receive feedback on their work at the end of each round from the judges. The final ten writers will compete for cash prizes for first, second and third place.

Each round of the challenge starts at 10pm Eastern US Time on a Friday and closes at 10pm Eastern US Time on the Sunday immediately following, giving you 48 hours to complete your entry. Each round will have a different genre and prompt style. Writers will be separated into groups and each group will receive a prompt. All groups will respond to that prompt in the genre assigned for each round. The rounds are scheduled as follows:



Prompt Style

July 8-10

Personal essay


July 22-24

Persuasive essay

Response to a topical question

August 5-7

Either genre

A prompt word which must be used seamlessly in the essay

Registration is now closed! Sign up for yeah write’s mailer to be notified of the next super challenge.

The amount of the prizes will be announced after all entries have been received.

Why? Because just like your sibling, we’re gonna split the money with you. That’s right: the total cash prizes for first, second and third place will add up to half of the entry fees. You know what that means? The more folks enter, the bigger the prize gets. Sign yourself up and then go share this news with your friends and community! Make the competition bigger, better and tougher for all of us!

Update: Now that all the registrations are in and we’ve counted them and rolled around in a giant pile of money, the final round prizes are:

First place: $175
Second place: $100
Third place: $75

For full text of the rules of the competition, go here. By entering the competition you agree to abide and be bound by these rules, so go actually read them. Besides, they contain really useful information about how to submit your work and in what format, in case you get tired of reading this FAQ.

Who can enter?
Anyone 18 or older can enter the competition, as long as it’s not void where you live. Yeah write editors are, naturally, not eligible. If we had actual employees they wouldn’t be eligible either, and it goes without saying that our competition judges are not eligible.

How many writers can work on an essay?
An essay is considered the work of the registered writer. We won’t split up the prizes. That said, you can show your work to others during the course of each round, receive feedback, and make revisions.

When will I get my assignment and when is it due?
Assignments will be posted at 10pm Eastern US Time on the opening Friday of each challenge, and it is due by 10pm on the Sunday immediately following. That means you have exactly 48 hours to write your essay!

How do I submit my essay?
Email your essay in .doc, .rtf, or .docx format to before 10pm on the closing day of each round. Use the subject line “Yeah write super challenge Round [x] Group [y] submission.” Make sure the filename is as specified in the official rules.

How do I format my essay?
Your essay must be in 12 point font – either Arial or Times New Roman. The first page should be blank except for the Title Page information described in the rules. The title page does not count toward your maximum word count of 1,000 words. Make sure your name does not appear anywhere in your essay or on the file. The name of the file must be as follows: [group number]-[title]. For example, if you are in Group 2 and the title of your essay is “Daisy Petals” then the filename will be 2-Daisy Petals.doc (or .rtf or .txt, as applicable).

What if I need to make changes to an essay I’ve submitted?
Sorry. We don’t accept revisions or changes to your work. Once you hit send that’s it, game over. The only exception will be if you forgot to attach your essay to your original submission. We’ll send you a confirmation email when we get your essay. Submitting two essays can be grounds for disqualification.

Who owns the copyright to my work?
You do. For a more complete explanation of what rights you are granting to yeah write by entering your work in the super challenge, see the official rules.

So can I post my work on my blog?
Not until after you receive feedback from the judges, please. Don’t make your work available in a forum where the judges might run across it until the judging is done. After each round of the challenge is over, we’ll also create a special grid to link up your work, since it’s not eligible for our regular challenge grids.

What feedback will I get on my work?
In every round you participate in, you’ll get an email telling you what the judges liked about your work, and what you need to work on. We’ll make sure to get you this feedback before the next round, so that it’s useful to you as you move through the competition!

Who are the judges?
A staff of professional writers, educators and editors. We’ll have a couple celebrity guest judges for each competition, usually in the final round, so stay tuned and keep checking our Announcements section on this page!

What if I have more questions?
Please send questions about the super challenge to only, and not to our Facebook, Twitter, or other email addresses. We will not be reviewing other email addresses or social media for super challenge related questions, and we want to make sure you hear back from us!

round one results

A big thank you and congratulations to all our entrants! It was a tight field in every group, and in most cases just a few points separated those that made the cut from those that missed it this time. We hope everyone’s still having fun, and that the feedback you got this morning from our judges was helpful.

It’s time to move on to round two of our competition, so stay tuned on Friday for this round’s prompts. Writers, just like last time, you’ll be getting an email at 10pm US Eastern time with your group and prompt assignments. The top five writers from each group will advance to the final round!

In the meantime, let’s give a hand to the following folks, in alphabetical order, who’ll be moving on to round two this week:

Jolene Belorgey

Donna-Louise Bishop

Melony Boseley

Tara Davis

Danielle Dayney

Grace Fetterman

Stacey Gengel

Catherine Keaton

Kelli King

Nancy Lowell

Tamara Oliver

Sampada Raje

Kay Roof

Lisa Shaw

Linda Tharp

Janice Wilberg

All writers are now free to share their round one essay. Just to make it easy, we’ve made a sharing grid. If you want to put your essay on your blog (or anywhere on the ‘net) and link it up here, click the submission link below and enter the URL where you’ve posted your essay. Please use the same email you used for the super challenge and don’t worry if you don’t see your post right away: we’re moderating entries to prevent accidental linkups.

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round two results

The email lemur has finished its work, our writers have their feedback, and now it’s time to see how those positives and negatives stacked up, and who will be advancing to the final round of the super challenge.

Final round prompts will be posted on Friday at 10pm EDT, and as always, writers will receive an email with the prompt and some helpful tips for how to interpret and use it to give us a personal or persuasive essay.

Congratulations this week go to, in alpha order, our top ten writers:

Jolene Belorgey

Donna-Louise Bishop

Melony Boseley

Danielle Dayney

Catherine Keaton

Kelli King

Tamara Oliver

Lisa Shaw

Linda Tharp

Janice Wilberg

All writers are now free to share their round two essays here or elsewhere. We’ve made a round two sharing grid for your convenience, but as always your work is yours; do what you want with it! If you add your work to this grid, please use the same email you used for the super challenge and don’t worry if you don’t see your post right away: we’re moderating entries to prevent accidental linkups. Remember your essay isn’t eligible for our regular grids, but you’re welcome to link it up to the weekend grid as well as here.

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final round results

I keep saying it’s a tight field, but apparently I didn’t know what that meant until this round, when fractional points separated most of the top entries. We hope everyone had as much fun as we did with this new challenge, and that you’ll be back for the next one, and to visit our regular grids in the meantime. We’re working on ways to get your feedback and give you ours (AMA? live chat? we’re wide open to ideas at this point) and we’ll be opening registration for – shameless plug – the fiction super challenge in just a few weeks.

Fanfare, please, for our winners:

First Place – $175

Linda Tharp, Brave

Second Place – $100

Donna-Louise Bishop, Amy

Third Place – $75

Lisa Shaw, Room 157


Winners, and the rest of our final round writers, should feel free to share or submit their essays elsewhere, or right here on the super challenge sharing grid:

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Prize update!

The registrations are counted up and the math is mathed and our prizes for the yeah write super challenge final round (in US dollars) will be:

First place: $175
Second place: $100
Third place: $75

Good luck, everyone!

July 23, 2016

As you’ve probably guessed, we’re having a small disagreement with our automated email system. I’ve said time and time again, never trust a chimpanzee to do a job right. It’s just orangutans all the way down.

The good news for you is that this means you get an extra half hour Sunday night to make up for the time it took us to coax the magic mail monkey to do its job yesterday. That’s right – your persuasive essay is now due at 10:30pm US Eastern time on Sunday the 24th. We appreciate your patience and we’re hiring a lemur to manage the emails for the next round.

July 31, 2016

The last of the judging scores are trickling in and we’re beginning to tabulate points and collate feedback for our round two writers. To keep you from biting your nails down to nubbins while you wait for the final round announcement, here’s a quick recap and roundup of some trends we noticed among the round one essays.

August 16, 2016

Final round news: The last of the scores are trickling in and we’re prepping feedback packets for those of you counting the hours. Turns out that “fewer contestants and more judges” is not in fact a formula for getting things done faster! Take a deep breath, re-read your essay and cringe at the lone typo that you just spotted, and we’ll have your feedback to you in the next couple days.