A woman's brave attempt to escape an abusive marriage is the springboard for the winner of the Chicago Writers Association’s 3nd Annual First Chapter Contest.

Deborah King's opening chapter to Glory Unbound captured first place. Deborah will be awarded a full scholarship to attend the Novel-In-Progress Bookcamp & Writing Retreat May 19 to 25, 2019, at the Cedar Valley Center & Spa, 35 miles northwest of Milwaukee, near West Bend, Wisconsin (value: $1385).

Second place goes to the first chapter of Robin' Jones's coming-of-age novel, Stephanie. Robin will receive a cash award of $150.

Third place and a cash award of $75 is awarded to Russell J. Fee for the opening chapter of his mystery thriller, A Dangerous Identity.

Honorable Mentions:

Memphis by Tara Stringfellow

Forty Miles an Hour by Ciaran Cooper

MT by Kasia Manolas

Markers by Mary Hutchings Reed

The Great Hate by Charlie Monte Verde

Members of CWA’s Board of Directors selected the prize winners, which will be published in CWA’s e-zine, Write City Magazine, from a record 70 entries. Judging was based on merits that should be found in a first chapter, including a good opening hook, strong characterizations, compelling voice, conflict, dialogue, and no grammar/mechanical errors.

Thank you to all of those who entered. The field of entries was highly competitive. The judges were all impressed by the quality of this year’s entries. Those who entered and did not win but want to attend the Novel-In-Progress Bookcamp & Writing Retreat may apply the $15 entry fee towards the already reduced Bookcamp registration cost for CWA members.

Look for details about the 4th Annual First Chapter Contest coming in the summer of 2019.