Prior Creative Writing Contest Winners

Fall 2023

Theme: Environmental Justice: Stories Drawn from Art

Miami student writers submitted a piece of flash fiction based on the student art exhibit at the Richard and Carole Cocks Art Museum. This contest was designed to align with Miami's FOCUS theme for 2023-2024, Environmental Justice.

  • 1st Place: “An Ode to the Oak” by Rhese Voisard
  • 2nd Place: “Atlases” by Olive Abram
  • 3rd Place: “Flying Elephant” by Olivia Voekler
  • Staff Pick: “Hitchhiker” by Lorna Wodzak

Spring 2023

Theme: Golden Shovel

Miami student writers submitted a piece of writing inspired by works found in the University Libraries archives!

1st Prize: “Untited” by Claire Hampton

2nd Prize: “Reflection” by Adeline Roux

3rd Prize: “Becoming You” by Anna Boyer

Staff Choice: “To Know” by Julia Quigley

Fall 2022

Theme: Taboo

Miami student writers submitted a piece of writing evoking autumn, but with a catch: they could not use certain words often associated with the season!

1st Prize: “Demeter in 5 Stages (Acceptance)” by Anna Boyer

2nd Prize: “The Radiator” by Caroline Laird

3rd Prize: “The Editor and The Poet” by Jessica Miller

Staff Choice: “Drifting through the Grove” by Jacob Bitonte

Spring 2022


Theme: Luck + Chance

Miami student writers submitted a piece of creative non-fiction when luck or chance played a role in their lives. 

First Prize: Meredith PerkinsClovers

Second Prize: Sophia RakicTablić

Third Prize: Olivia KellyCanip and Pain

Staff Choice: JoAnn SuDoubt and Recovery/From The Other Side

Fall 2021

White pumpkin on orange background with green camera overlay. Text reads: Photo Flash Fiction Contest Howe Writing Center.


Theme: Photo Flash Fiction

Miami student writers submitted a piece of fiction where they used their pen as a camera to give us a slice of life, a flash of fancy, a moment of misery, or an instance of insight based upon one of several provided photos. 

First Prize: Em UpDyke, The Family Flowerbed

Second Prize: Sam FoutsHowling Bones

Third Prize: Dalanie BeachLiminal Space

Staff Choice: Valerie SenkowskiDramamine

Honorable Mention: Charles XieTravelers

Spring 2021

Poster from Spring 2021 Howe Writing Center writing contest: "Hope and Rebirth." Features spring flowers, a typewriter' a piece of paper is in the typewriter with  typed text of a quote by W. H. Auden "poetry is the clear expression of mixed feelings"

Theme: Hope & Rebirth

Miami student writers submitted poetry that reflected on what “Hope and Rebirth” meant to them, especially in that current moment, amid COVID-19 during Spring semester.

First prize: Paige Hartenburg, "Flowers for Lily" 

Second prize: Sarah Zimmerman, "When Fears are Validated, Progress Halts"

Staff choice: Alfredo Ascanio, "I Crossed a Bridge"

Fall 2020

Poster from Fall 2020 Howe Writing Center writing contest: "Here and Now." Features photos a woman wearing a mask, a dark empty classroom, protest signs, an "I voted" sticker, and an iPad.

Theme: Here & Now

Miami student writers submitted creative nonfiction pieces that considered how issues of tolerance, inclusion, antiracism, social inequality, or COVID-19 have impacted them personally.

Co-first prize: Aiyana White, (untitled)

Co-first prize: Ethan Maguire, "These Walls"

Second prize: Gabe Porter, "Sanitize"

Staff choice: Lauren Racela, (untitled)

Spring 2020

Poster from Spring 2020 Howe Writing Center writing contest: "What We Leave Behind." Features a tree on top of the earth.

Theme: What We Leave Behind: Sustainability and Disposability

Miami student writers submitted poems about environmental impact, sustainability, and "what we leave behind" both materially and personally.

First prize: Alexander Benedict, "anthem for uneaten candycanes" and "American Doll"

Second prize: Brianna Porter, "They Told Me The World Was Dying"

Honorable mention: Hannah Stohry, "The Sorting Process"

Fall 2019

Poster from Fall 2019 Howe Writing Center writing contest: "Change of Seasons." Features a background of colored waves in blue, purple, red, orange, and green.

Theme: Change of Seasons

Miami student writers submitted fiction, nonfiction, and poetry focused on how we experience the world around us when the seasons change, and also on how people, relationships, and cultures change, too.

First prize: T. Mesnick, "Pumpkin Patch"

Second prize: Alexander Benedict, "Fall as an Unsure Haircut"