The First Page student writing challenge: Write the first page of a book set in 2169

What will the world look like in 150 years? How will today's events shape the future?

What will the world look like in 150 years? How will today's events shape the future?

We want Grades 7 to 12 students to give us a glimpse of the great Canadian novel in the year 2169. 

Your challenge is to write the first page of a novel set 150 years in the future, with your protagonist facing an issue that's topical today and setting the scene for how it's all playing out in a century and a half.

How will the world leaders of today impact the world of tomorrow? Who will be the biggest name in pop culture in the future? How will climate change impact the protagonist's life, where he or she lives, the struggles he or she is facing? (Oh, and speaking of he/she — does gender even exist in 150 years?)

The book could be from any literary genre, from mystery or thriller to literary fiction, from adventure or romance to satire or sci-fi.

Two winning entries — one from the Grades 7 to 9 category and one from the Grades 10 to 12 category — will be chosen by bestselling writer Kelley Armstrong, author of A Royal Guide to Monster Slaying and the forthcoming YA novel Aftermath.

Both winners will receive a one-year subscription to OwlCrate, which sends fresh boxes of books to young readers across Canada on a monthly basis. In addition, each winners' school libraries will receive 50 free YA books.

You can read the complete rules and regulations here.

Last year's winners were Stella Xia, in the Grades 7-9 category, for Taxidermied, and Peter Ola Paul, in the Grades 10-12 category, for Greater Than or Equal To. You can read all the 2018 finalists' entries here.

WHAT YOU CAN WRITE: Your entry can be 300-400 words in length. Your entry also needs a title, but the title is not included in the word limit. Your entry can be written in any genre.

WHO CAN ENTER: This contest is open to all Canadian residents who are full-time students enrolled in Grades 7 to 12. Entries will be judged in two age categories: Grades 7 to 9 and Grades 10 to 12.

TEACHER GUIDES: Visit for discussion questions and writing tips from Canadian writers, like Cherie Dimaline, Erin Bow, Katherena Vermette, M.G. Vassanji and Vikki VanSickle.

WHEN YOU CAN SUBMIT: Nov. 4 to 25, 2019

HOW TO SUBMIT: During the submission period, a link to an online entry form will be available on this page.


If you're interested in other writing competitions, check out the CBC Literary Prizes. The CBC Short Story Prize is currently open and accepting submissions until Oct. 31, 2019.


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