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2023 ICAN Writing Contest

THEME: TRAVEL will be the theme we are asking you to write about. This is a wide topic. It can be anything from travel tips to traveling to alternate universes.


  • Fiction

  • Nonfiction / Memoir

  • Poetry / Song Lyrics (Each poem is considered a separate entry. You cannot have multiple poems to add up to the 1200 words)

  • Bible Study / Self-Help


Submissions must be original and not previously published in print and/or electronic form.

One entry only per person per category is allowed. Multiple categories may be entered.


Guidelines and Requirements:

  • Name, Title, and Category need to be in the header of each page

  • Times New Roman – 12 point or Courier 12 pt

  • Submissions need to be in a Word document

  • Double space (poetry and song lyrics may be single spaced and in stanza format)

  • One-inch margins

  • Ragged right margins (no justified margins)

  • Page numbers can be on the top or bottom

  • Up to 1200 words (entry may be incomplete)

  • No profanity or graphic content accepted Email entries to

  • Entries will not be returned. Do not attach more than one entry at a time to the email.


DEADLINE: All entries must be received by midnight of October 1, 2023. No late entries will be accepted.


COST: If you are attending the conference in October, you will get one entry for $10.00 If you want to enter more categories, it will be an additional $10.00 for each entry.

If you are not attending the conference, the first entry will cost $20.00 and $10.00 for each additional entry.

Fees are nonrefundable.

Failure to follow instructions will result in disqualification. Should your entry be disqualified, you will receive a letter stating the reason for disqualification and, time permitting, an opportunity to resubmit at no additional charge.



AWARDS: All entrants will receive the comments from the judges to help them understand the scores they received. First-place winners of each category will receive a formal critique letter, a certificate, and 20% off coupon for a future ICAN event.

Winners’ names, the title of their work, photos, and the genre of winning works will be posted on our website and Facebook page after the conference.



When submitting to an agent or editor, one of the quickest ways to get a rejection is to fail to follow the formatting guidelines. To better prepare you for the business side of writing, we have established these guidelines for our contest. Please follow them.

If your submission does not follow the formatting guidelines, it will be sent back to you with a one-time chance to resubmit at no extra charge. If you resubmit a second time without the correct format, your entry will be rejected.


Please understand this is not personal. We want you to succeed in your writing career no matter what your goals are, and following submission guidelines is an important part of that.

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