Our passion is providing inspiration to help people write and share their stories. Together, we offer numerous ways to write and engage with other writing enthusiasts.
Writing Contests & Opportunities
In partnership with the Peninsula Pulse, Write On is pleased to present the 2021 Hal Prize, with awards in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and photography.
Conducted annually since 1998, the Hal Prize seeks to encourage and honor artistic expression in various literary forms and photography.
In previous years, the contest winners’ profiles and work were published in the Peninsula Pulse’s annual Literary Issue. This year, this content will instead be published in the Pulse’s new literary magazine, 8142 Review: an annual, freestanding publication that will focus on creativity and the literary world. Cash awards of up to $250 and a week’s stay at Write On, Door County will be awarded.
The Hal Prize is presented in collaboration with Write On, Door County, a nonprofit organization that promotes writing and reading to year-round and seasonal county residents.
The entry deadline is Sept. 15, 2021. All submissions will be accepted digitally. To review the complete submission guidelines and submit your creative work, visit thehalprize.com.
Open to writers working in ekphrasis: writing inspired by visual art.
Write On, Door County is pleased to offer the Dick Scuglik Memorial Residency and Scholarship to a poet or other writer with demonstrated ability and interest in ekphrastic writing. The residency is awarded annually the third week of June.
The selected writer will be paired with a Door County visual artist. The artist and writer will share work with each other. Each will create new work in response to other’s work prior to the start of the residency. During the residency, both writer and artist will participate in a public event at which the new work is shared, along with a conversation about the creative process.
While ekphrastic writing is most common in poetry, Write On welcomes applications from all genres, provided the work sample submitted fits the classification of ekphrasis.
A scholarship fund is available to assist the writer with travel expenses related to the residency.
- The contest is open to both published and unpublished writers.
- Writers must be at least 21 years of age.
- Writers may be currently enrolled in a graduate writing program.
- Writers must have demonstrated ability and interest in ekphrasis.
- Submit 10-15 pages of a work sample that demonstrates your ekphrastic writing. Excerpts of longer works are acceptable.
- Include a statement of interest in ekphrastic writing, at least one paragraph but no more than three paragraphs.
- Include a list of publications, if any, highlighting published exphrastic writing.
- Include a one-paragraph biographical statement.
DEADLINE: Monday, December 16, 2020.
ENTRY FEE: $40.00
A selection committee organized by Write On, Door County nominates a qualified individual to serve as the Door County Poet Laureate. The Door County Board of Supervisors approves the nomination. The appointment of Poet Laureate is two years.
The purpose of the Poet Laureate appointment is to raise the county consciousness to a greater level of appreciation for the reading and writing of poetry and to serve as a literary ambassador to the community. Among the duties of the Poet Laureate are:
- to encourage and support local poets;
- to build a greater audience for poetry through readings and other events;
- to work with community agencies, schools, libraries, senior citizen groups, service clubs, or church societies on readings, workshops, or other events utilizing the talents of area poets or poetry groups.;
- to utilize the media to promote poetry;
- to occasionally compose a commemorative poem for a special Door County occasion if requested by the chair of a Door County governmental unit (and if mutually agreed upon);
- to bring his/her individual talents and strengths to build a personal agenda which will carry out the mission;
- to keep a log or notebook of activities accomplished and publicity about such activities during the term of appointment.
The selection committee ideally consists of the current and at least one past Door County Poet Laureate, a representative of Write On, a county English teacher, a librarian, and an individual representing the community. The committee considers the following criteria when nominating an individual for the post:
- ability to carry out the duties of the position;
- quality of poetry and publication history;
- contributions to the Door County poetry community;
- recognition locally, regionally, and beyond in the poetry community;
- worthiness of the honor of the position of Door County Poet Laureate.
Write On, Door County curates and maintains the Poetry Trail at Newport State Park. Up to 16 poems are displayed on 10 permanent stanchions along the Rowleys Bay and Monarch trails. Available year-round, exhibits change quarterly. The works of local writers, Wisconsin poets, and others are displayed. Contributors include school children, published poets, and the poets laureate of Door County and Wisconsin.
The Poetry Trail can be accessed via the Welcome Center parking lot. The trail wanders through a wooded area and out into open land. The ten stanchions along the path allow people an opportunity to experience poetry within the beauty of nature. The trail began in 2010 as a joint project of local poetry groups and the Newport Wilderness Society. Since 2016, the trail has become a program of Write On. Poetry exhibits are scheduled to change quarterly. Newport State Park is located on County NP, east of Highway 42, near Gills Rock. A state park vehicle sticker is required for admission.
Currently on exhibit through August 1: the poetry of Phil Hansotia.
Phil Hansotia was instrumental in establishing the Poetry Trail in 2010. Phil passed away last June. This exhibit honors him and his work. A reading will be held on Saturday, June 26, at 1 pm, with members of Phil's poetry group, The Wallace Group, and others reading his work. The reading is planned along the trail. In the event of inclement weather, it will be held at the shelter off of parking lot #3.
If you would like to volunteer to assist with the Poetry Trail, please contact Jerod Santek by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 920.868.1457.
Join our mailing list and stay connected