Millions of Suns Writing Contest

By: Danielle Coty-Fattal | Date: January 1, 2024 | Tags: Contest, Writers on Writing
Millions of Suns Writing Contest

To celebrate the publication of Millions of Suns: On Writing and Life by M. C. Benner Dixon & Sharon Fagan McDermott, we are excited to announce a writing contest! Millions of Suns is the newest book in our Writers on Writing series and includes over fifty engaging writing prompts to spark the creative process. These prompts guide readers toward the freedom and joy that comes with finding one’s authentic voice.

Authors M. C. Benner Dixon & Sharon Fagan McDermott invite you to submit a piece in response to one of the prompts from the book. Your piece can be fiction, non-fiction, or poetry — we will have a winner in each category! The authors will judge the contest and the winners will receive a copy of the book in the mail so that they can continue to use these writing prompts in their daily writing craft.


The Writing Prompt

The Forgotten

Select a memorable scene from your childhood (learning archery at camp, the day you met your dog, watching your brother get in a fight). Write down everything you can remember in explicit and meticulous detail—the dog’s one-up-one-down ears, the sound of the first punch, etc.

Now, write down all that you don’t remember. (“I don’t remember the brightness of the summer sun, the way it landed in the canopy of trees above our heads.” “I don’t remember the words he said to my brother, whether he cursed or not, whether he insulted our mother.”) Some of the details will be easy to imagine plausibly; some will not. Write a poem, essay, or story that pulls on both memory and forgetting.

About the Judges



Sharon Fagan McDermott is an award-winning Upper School English Teacher at Winchester Thurston School. Her books of poetry include Life without Furniture, Bitter Acoustic, Alley Scatting, and Voluptuous.

M. C. Benner Dixon is an editor, writer, and writing coach. Her book The Height of Land is the winner of the Orison Fiction Prize. 


Contest Guidelines

To enter:

  • Fill out the form at
  • Deadline: upload your submission by 11:59 pm ET, February 28th, 2024.
  • Requirements: In the form, indicate the category you would like to submit to — Fiction, Non-Fiction, or Poetry.
    • If you are entering the Fiction or Non-Fiction categories, your submission must be under 2,000 words.
    • If you are entering the Poetry category, your submission must be 40 lines or less.
    • One winner will be selected from each category.

The form will also ask for an email address where we can send feedback about your submission and the mailing address where you would like us to send your prize if you are selected as a winner. This contact information will not be shared with the contest judges so that judging is blind.

The winners will be selected at the end of March and notified by email. By entering, you give us permission to share your name and an excerpt from your submission on social media if you are selected as one of the three contest winners.

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