The personal essay should be about a personal experience, told in your own words, with a great story and a great theme. Entries are limited to 5,000 words.
The final judge for this year's Personal Essay/Creative Nonfiction category is the multi-talented Kim Stafford, author of Having Everything Right: Essays of Place, The Muses Among Us: Eloquent Listening and Other Pleasures of the Writer's Craft, A Thousand Friends of Rain: New and Selected Poems, and Early Morning: Remembering My Father, William Stafford, as well as several other books of prose and poetry. He is also the director of the Northwest Writing Institute at Lewis and Clark in Portland, Oregon.
You do not need to be a member of NCW or in Colorado to enter the contests.Prizes are given for 1st place: $200, 2nd place: $100, and 3rd place: $50. Winners and Honorable Mentions will be published in the annual winners' anthology, Pooled Ink: Celebrating the 2012 NCW Contest Winners (due out December 1, 2012) and receive 1 free copy. The judges' decisions are final.
For more information about the entry fee, submission guidelines, etc., follow this link to the Northern Colorado Writers Contest Page.
Here's the cover art for last year's anthology.