CL Writing Contest: Fiction, poetry, and the theme is…

The Creative Loafing Writing Contest is back! And this year we're going Green. Yes, 'Green' is this year's theme — whatever that conjures up for you, whether it's money, grass, Al Gore, youth, envy, nausea, creme de menthe, leprechauns. The possibilities are endless.

OK, maybe not leprechauns. Yes, the winning entries will be published on Mar. 17, St. You-Know-Who's Day, but leprechauns would be way too obvious, no? As you'll see in the rules, you don't have to use the word 'green' in your work — you just have to incorporate your interpretation(s) of the word into your writing in some way.

And here's some good news for poets: This year we're not just looking for short stories but poems, too.

We're proud to have Helen Pruitt Wallace, newly crowned Poet Laureate of St. Petersburg, as our poetry judge. Novelist Sheree L. Greer will judge fiction, and in a nicely synchronous turn of events, we’re holding the Winners’ Reading at CL Space on Mar. 16, the same day as the publication of her latest novel, A Return to Arms.

Deadline for submissions is Feb. 18. Readers will get to vote on their favorite story and poem at cltampa.com/WritingContest from Feb. 25-March 4. Judges' and readers' winners will be announced at the reading on the 16th, which will be open to the public.

Write away!