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Contest Judges and Award Ceremony Speaker Announced
We are honored to have four prominent Young Adult authors participating in our 2015 $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest! Read their bios and link to their websites below.
Terri Farley to be 2015 Award Celebration Guest Speaker
We are happy to announce that Terri Farley will be our guest speaker at the 2015 Bluefire Award Celebration, to be held Sunday, May 3rd, 2015, from 2-4 PM at Kepler's Books in Menlo Park, CA. Terri is the best-selling author of the PHANTOM STALLION series for young readers and a contemporary Celtic fantasy nominated as a YALSA best book. She was honored by the Nevada Writers Hall of Fame and her HarperCollins books have sold more than two million copies in 28 countries.
Farley is an advocate for the West’s wild horses and works with young people learning to make their voices heard. Wild at Heart: Mustangs and the Young People Fighting to Save Them, her first work of non-fiction, is due out from Houghton-Mifflin-Harcourt Fall 2015.
In addition to being our guest speaker, Terri will be a first-round judge for our 2015 writing competition. Thanks Terri!
Tamara Ireland Stone is our 2015 Guest Judge
We are honored to announce Tamara Ireland Stone as our 2015 Guest Judge. The guest judge is responsible for making the hard choice to select the $1000 scholarship winners for the $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest out of the pool of seven grade-level winners selected by our Editorial Committee.
Tamara is the author of Time After Time and Time Between Us, which has been published in over twenty countries to widespread acclaim, and hailed as "an exciting debut novel" by Booklist and "a warm, time bending romance" by Publishers Weekly. It has been optioned for film by CBS Films. Her next novel, Every Last Word, is about a teen girl with OCD who’s hiding part of herself from the world, until she discovers a secret poetry club that changes her in unexpected ways. Every Last Word releases on June 16, 2015.
A former Silicon Valley marketing executive, Tamara enjoys skiing, hiking, and spending time with her husband and two children. She lives just outside of San Francisco. Visit her website at www.tamarairelandstone.com.
Lindsay Tam Holland Joins the Bluefire Editorial Committee
Lindsay Tam Holland, our 2014 Award Celebration guest speaker and YA author, has joined the Bluefire Editorial Committee. The Editorial Committee is responsible for selecting the content of our journal and picking the grade-level winners of the $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest. Lindsay was a very popular speaker at last year's award celebration, and we're honored to have her continued involvement in our organization.
Lindsay Tam Holland was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is a graduate of Stanford University and the University of San Francisco's MFA program. She used to teach high school English and coach water polo, but now she mostly folds laundry, makes mac&cheese, and thinks about what she could be writing if she weren't folding laundry and making mac&cheese. Her debut YA novel, The Counterfeit Family Tree of Vee Crawford-Wong, was recently published and has for unknown reasons not yet been made into a major motion picture. Thanks, Lindsay!
Author Veronica Wolff Joins the 2015 Judging Panel
Our thanks to author Veronica Wolff for joining our judging panel for the 2015 $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest! Veronica is an award-winning, bestselling author with a soft spot for kilts, mountains, beaches, and vampires. Not necessarily at the same time. She lived everywhere from Texas, to Hawaii, to India, before finally settling in Northern California. She writes in several genres, including Scottish historical romance, time travel, contemporary romance, and young adult.
2015 Contest Now Open for Submissions!
We are pleased to announce that the 2015 $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest is now open and accepting submissions! The contest is open to aspiring young authors in grades 6 - 12. Entries must be submitted no later than February 1st, 2015 and must be *exactly* 1000 words. Contest winners at each grade level will win a $100 cash prize, and the best entry from each of middle school and high school will win a $1000 scholarship. All winners plus a number of honorable mentions will be published in the 2015 edition of our journal Bluefire. To read excerpts from the winning work from last year, please visit our 2014 Award Celebration page. Last year we received over 300 entries and published 22 young authors. We hope to see even more this time!
For submission guidelines, please visit our Contest Rules page. You can submit a piece with our Entry Form. We look forward to reading your work and good luck!
Help spread the word! Here is our 2015 Contest Flyer. Print it out and help spread the word at your school.
2014 Creative Writing Summer Workshop
This past summer, we held our first creative writing workshop in conjunction with Girls to Women, a nonprofit focused on nurturing underserved girls in our community. Our foundation provided a week-long creative writing workshop to 15 young women. The curriculum leveraged examples from our journal Bluefire, which publishes the work of students from our $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest. The workshop students created their own original piece of fiction, and ended the week by reading their work to their peers - you can read some excerpts here. In addition to the curriculum, we provided two experienced instructors who were assisted by young author and 2014 11th grade prize winner Darya Behroozi. And because of the outstanding generosity of two anonymous donors, were able to outfit the workshop with laptops for students and teachers alike.
All in all it was a great success and we are looking forward to doing this again next year, but we could use your help! If you have room in your charitable giving this year or next, please consider making a donation to our foundation so we can continue to support young authors for years to come. You can pick up a copy of Bluefire in the process.
Are you a teacher or parent interested in providing creative writing enrichment to middle or high school students? Are you interested in being a workshop instructor? Our foundation is looking to partner with teachers, schools, afterschool and summer school providers, and nonprofits to expand our workshops in the coming year. If you are interested in exploring opportunities to work with us, please send us a message using our Contact Us form or subscribe to our teacher mailing list.
Summer Creative Writing Workshop. Click the photo to see more and to read excerpts of the students' work.
Tax Exempt Status Confirmed!
We received notice from the IRS confirming our tax exempt status (Tax ID 46-3489728). If you have donated to our organization your contribution is deductible back to our incorporation date of August 7th, 2013. Thanks to everyone who has contributed so far!
2014 Award Celebration a big success!
Our inaugural $1000 for 1000 Words fiction-writing contest award celebration was held Sunday, April 27th at Kepler's Bookstore in Menlo Park, CA. Ten students read their work with amazing poise and thoroughly impressed the more than 100 attendees of the event. In addition, we had YA author and educator Lindsay Tam Holland speak about being a writer and the writing and publishing process, and answer questions from the audience. Food was provided by Cafe La Tartine in Redwood City - Leyla's favorite cafe in town and a great place to stop before or after a movie. Special thanks to Jean Forstner at Kepler's for providing the perfect space for our celebration.
Thanks to everyone who has helped make our first year a success, and congratulations to all the young authors - it's official...you've been published!
A copy of the Bluefire journal is available for a donation to the foundation. To find out how to get a copy, please go to our donations page.
Award celebration at Kepler's bookstore in Menlo Park, CA. Click the photo to see more.
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The Leyla Beban Young Authors Foundation is a tax exempt 501(c) (3) nonprofit corporation (Tax ID: 46-3489728) dedicated to the promotion of creative writing in kids and teens. The Foundation is dedicated to the memory of Leyla Beban and her love of books, creative writing, imagination, and adventure. The Foundation is based in Leyla's hometown of Redwood City, CA and focuses charitable activities on San Mateo and Santa Clara counties.