The Best Young Adult Writing Contests of 2022

Writing competitions curated by Reedsy

Showing 50 contests


Annual Cultural Heritage Writing Contest

The Trailblazer Review

Founded in November 2022, The Trailblazer Review is an international high school literary magazine dedicated to celebrating and honoring indigenous culture through creative writing. Its Annual Cultural Heritage Contest accepts submissions of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction under 4000 words from middle and high school students (13-18 years old) on the subject of native culture and heritage.

Top prize

Publication

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: FREE

Deadline: February 20, 2023


Genres

Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Script Writing, Short Story, Young Adult

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Stringybark Open Short Story Award 2023

Stringybark Publishing

Our annual flagship competition, the Stringybark Stories Open Short Story Award 2023, is now bigger than ever! Thanks to Graeme Simpson and Anne Buist, a record prize pool of over $1300 is on offer. The theme is open, the only constraint is that there must be a reference to Australia somewhere in the story. It doesn't matter how small a link there is (it could be a jar of vegemite on the counter), there just needs to be one!

Top prize

$560

Additional prizes

2nd: $360 | 3rd: $210 | 4th: $110

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $15

Deadline: February 12, 2023


Genres

Fiction, Mystery, Short Story, Crime, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult

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Elegant Literature's Contest For New Writers

Elegant Literature

One of the largest awards open to unpublished writers, and the only one closed to professionals. We are the first magazine to pay pro rates and only accept submissions from new writers, paying new authors over $50,000 this year. One new writer receives the grand prize. We also choose the best stories, pay the authors above-professional rates, and publish them in our magazine. December's head judge is Creag Munroe.

Top prize

$3,000

Additional prizes

Paid publication, 25 x $20 USD | Free entry to Novelist Accelerator

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $10

Deadline: January 01, 2023


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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The Times/Chicken House Children's Fiction Competition

Chicken House Books

We're looking for original ideas, a fresh voice, a diverse range of entries and stories that children will love! To enter, you must have written a full-length novel suitable for children/young adults aged between 7 and 18 years. We suggest a minimum of 30,000 words and ask that manuscripts do not exceed 80,000 words. The IET 150 Award will be awarded to a manuscript that celebrates Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths.

Top prize

A worldwide publishing contract with Chicken House & royalty advance of £10,000

Additional prizes

An offer of representation from a top literary agent

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $25

Deadline: June 01, 2023


Genres

Fiction, Novel, Novella, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Young Adult

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NOWW 25th International Writing Contest

Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop (NOWW)

A Canadian contest with an international flair. As part of our 25th anniversary celebration, we have increased the prize total to $1800 over six major categories: poetry, short fiction, creative non-fiction, crime fiction, literary critical writing, and The Bill MacDonald prize for prose (A Northwestern Ontario setting must be central to the work).

Top prize

$150 CAD

Additional prizes

Publication in NOWW magazine

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $10

Deadline: February 28, 2023


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Non-fiction, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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Pet Flash Fiction Contest

Booksie.com

Write a true story about a pet in 300 words or less! To make it extra enjoyable, please show us a picture of your pet if you can! It can be silly, sad, scary, or any adjective so long as it involves your furry or scaly friend.

Top prize

$250

Additional prizes

2 runner-up: $50

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $5

Deadline: February 28, 2023


Genres

Fiction, Humor, Young Adult

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The Goldilocks Zone

Sunspot Lit

Inspired by the search for Goldilocks Zone planets, Sunspot Lit is looking for one short story, CNF, artwork, poem, graphic novel, or script that combines excellence with appeal. Literary and genre works accepted; feedback available.

Top prize

$200

Additional prizes

Publication

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $9

Deadline: December 19, 2022


Genres

Crime, Essay, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Poetry, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Script Writing, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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The Nervous Ghost Press Book Prize

Nervous Ghost Press

The 2021 Nervous Ghost Press Book Prizes are open to outstanding works of poetry and prose by anyone living in the United States of America. ​All work and all writers, from any point in their careers, are welcome to submit their work and get a chance of publication. Please submit a completed a manuscript (50,000-100,000 words for prose, 48-128 pages for poetry).

Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Publication and a Californian reading tour

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: FREE

Deadline: March 31, 2023


Genres

Essay, Fiction, Memoir, Non-fiction, Novel, Poetry, Humor, Young Adult

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Mum Life Stories Micro Fiction Writing Competition

Mum Life Stories

Win cash prizes and publication in an anthology. This is the 6th and final round of the second series of micro fiction competitions on the blog 'Mum Life Stories'. Just 500 words around the them 'Empty Nest', which can be interpreted any way you like, as long as it includes a mum somewhere in the story. There will be an anthology release early to mid 2023 including the shortlists (Top 10) from each round.

Top prize

$31

Additional prizes

Publication

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $2

Deadline: November 06, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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Story Unlikely's Short Story Contest

Story Unlikely

Short Story contest with $1,000 prize package and NO entry fee. Fiction or memoir, up to 4,500 words. Looking for well-written, expertly told stories, regardless of genre.

Top prize

$1,000 total package

Additional prizes

Publication

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: FREE

Deadline: December 31, 2022


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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Writing MISCHIEF

Sadie Tells Stories

For Sadie's final writing competition of 2022 she wanted to inspire you to have a little fun, mischievous fun that is. One of the definitions of mischief is: irresponsibly playful. Writing MISCHIEF is a 500 word short story contest. The story can be fiction or non-fiction as long as it includes an element of mischief. As usual, it does not need to be about mischief, it just needs to have an element of it somewhere in the story.

Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

2nd: $150

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $10

Deadline: November 15, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Mystery, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Young Adult

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Historical Fiction Challenge

Globe Soup

For this short story challenge, all participants will be randomly assigned a period in history. As soon as you receive your assignment, you'll have until the closing time to research, write, and submit a short story of no more than 4,000 words, set during this historical period.

Top prize

$1,131

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $17

Deadline: October 28, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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HFC Book of the Year Contest

The Historical Fiction Company

An exclusive book contest for Historical Fiction, including all subgenres of historical romance, mystery, fantasy, time travel, alternate history, YA/children, non-fiction, and novellas. We have sixteen categories with gold, silver, and bronze winners in each category. The top prize is chosen from the gold category winners and receives $1000 in cash plus a stunning crystal trophy and our new prize - a one-of-a-kind leather-bound book of the winning book.

Top prize

$1,000

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $50

Deadline: November 29, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Novel, Novella, Romance, Young Adult

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Inception 2022: $250 for Best Opening

Sunspot Lit

Beginnings weight one moment with a particular power. A poem handles this differently than flash fiction, a novel, a graphic novel or an art series. Send your best opening. No restrictions on theme, category, or the length of the piece or collection from which the excerpt comes. Publication will be offered to runners-up and finalists.

Top prize

$250

Additional prizes

Publication in digital and print editions

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $8

Deadline: October 09, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Non-fiction, Novel, Novella, Romance, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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Story of the Year Contest

Storyshares

The annual Story of the Year Contest is coming back for the sixth year, and we are searching for fresh, diverse stories that are "easy to read and hard to put down." The 2022 competition will run from October 4 to December 27 and will feature 4 distinct categories. Winners will receive $12,000 in cash prizes, plus publication in both digital and print form. Entry will be free, unlimited, and open internationally.

Top prize

Diversity $3,000

Additional prizes

Tough Topics $2,000 | For Teens By Teens $2,000 | People’s Choice $1,000

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $0

Deadline: December 27, 2022


Genres

Fiction, Non-fiction, Short Story, Young Adult

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100 Word Writing Contest

Tadpole Press

100 words per entry. Submit as many entries as you’d like. All ages. All genders. All nationalities. All writers welcome. This year's theme is the power of words. The words we write, the words we say, the words we keep to ourselves. They make a difference in the lives of those around us. How can you use your words to instill a sense of calm, of hope, of community? To remind one another of the beauty of diversity. To encourage us to support, love, and inspire one another.

Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

2nd: writing coach package 3rd: developmental or diversity editing package.

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $10

Deadline: November 30, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Thriller, Young Adult

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She Writes Press and SparkPress Towards Equality in Publishing (STEP)

SparkPoint Studio

The STEP contest awards female BIPOC authors a publishing package to publish on either She Writes Press or SparkPress. The purpose of this contest is to support inclusivity across our own lists, and to fortify our own mission to give voice to women writers.

Top prize

Publishing package valued at $8500

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $0

Deadline: October 15, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Non-fiction, Crime, Fantasy, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Novel, Romance, Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult

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Writing Contest 2023

BooksShelf

We look for an original and captivating work of fiction or nonfiction. The genre is not important - the story is. We're looking forward to reading your amazing books!

Top prize

$200 USD Fiction | $100 USD Nonfiction

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $25

Deadline: January 31, 2023


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Novel, Novella, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Thriller, Young Adult

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The Annual Writerwerx University Short Story Contest

Writerwerx University

Submit your piece of 2,000 words or less to compete with writers all over the country for cash, prizes, and bragging rights! There are no theme or topic restrictions. Erotic, religious, and technical shorts are welcome.

Top prize

$2,500

Additional prizes

2nd: $1500 | 3rd: $150

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $25

Deadline: August 31, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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ScienceQuest NextGen Science Literary Writing Competition

Zoomcatchers

Established to recognize and encourage creative writing and provide a platform for publication, this science literary competition is open to original and previously unpublished short stories in the English language by a writer of any nationality, living anywhere in the world. Writing samples submitted must be from the genres of: Science fiction, Dystopian, Futuristic, Fantasy, Paranormal ​​ We accept essay, short story, and novel submissions up to 15 pages in length, double-spaced.

Top prize

$200

Additional prizes

Consultation with literary agent Leticia Gomez

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $20

Deadline: September 05, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Essay, Fantasy, Novel, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Young Adult

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Seven Hills Literary Contest and Penumbra Poetry and Haiku Contest

Tallahassee Writers Association

The Seven Hills Literary Contest and Penumbra Poetry and Haiku Contest (collectively, “the Contest”) is sponsored annually by the Tallahassee Writers Association. The contest is open to English-language entries from around the world. For the first time, we are open to published entries as well as unpublished entries.

Top prize

$300

Additional prizes

Published in the Seven Hills Review

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $15

Deadline: September 30, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Children's, Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Non-fiction, Novel, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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The Bath Children’s Novel Award

The Bath Novel Awards

The Bath Children’s Novel Award is an annual international prize for emerging novelists writing for children or teens. Submissions are the first 5,000 words plus one page synopsis. A children’s literary agent will judge the winning manuscript from a shortlist chosen by Junior Judges aged seven to seventeen.

Top prize

£3000

Additional prizes

Manuscript feedback from junior judges, literary agent introductions, novel editing course

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $34

Deadline: November 30, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Novel, Young Adult

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Writing LOVE

Sadie Tells Stories

Writing LOVE is a 500 word short story contest. The story can be fiction or non-fiction as long as it includes an element of love. A love for life, for nature, for someone, for peace, for a passion..

Top prize

$500

Additional prizes

$150 to the runner up

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $10

Deadline: August 15, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Memoir, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Young Adult

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Best Indie Book Award

Best Indie Book Award

The annual Best Indie Book Award® (or BIBA®) is an international literary awards contest recognizing self-published and independently published authors from all over the world. Entries are limited to independently (indie) published books, including those from small presses, e-book publishers, and self-published authors.

Top prize

Trophy

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $65

Deadline: October 01, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Novel, Novella, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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2nd Annual WCWF Writing Contest

Wine Country Writers' Festival

Fire up those pens and get those unpublished stories and poems submitted to WCWF 2nd Annual Writing Contest. Three winners in each category, publication in Anthology, and your own copy. Entries: $15 or two for $25.

Top prize

$150

Additional prizes

2nd Place: $75 | 3rd Place: $50

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $15

Deadline: July 29, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Non-fiction, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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Time Travelers Contest

Neovel

The theme of this contest is Time travel. To respect the theme of the contest, the main character or characters of your entry must go through a change of temporality and must have a significant impact on the plot. This change must occur in the story before the end of the fourth chapter and must be mentioned in your book description.

Top prize

€2000

Additional prizes

2nd: €750 3rd: €250

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: FREE

Deadline: May 25, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fantasy, Fiction, Novel, Science Fiction, Young Adult

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Black Voices in Children's Literature

Free Spirit Publishing

Seeking Black Midwestern writers 18 years and older to submit an original fiction or nonfiction children’s story for a picture book. Manuscripts 300–800 words (ages 4–8) or 50–125 words (ages 0–4) in length. Must feature contemporary Black characters and culture.

Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

Meeting with Strive and Free Spirit; 2nd $500; 3rd $250, t-shirt and totebag for all winners

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $0

Deadline: July 24, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Short Story, Young Adult

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Geminga: $250 for Tiny Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, or Art

Sunspot Lit

Authors and artists eligible. Sunspot Lit’s Geminga contest honors the power of the small. No restrictions on theme or category. $250 cash, publication for the winner, and publication offered to runners-up and finalists. Enter as many times as you like, but only one piece per submission.

Top prize

$250

Additional prizes

Publication in digital and print

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $6

Deadline: June 30, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Essay, Fantasy, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Script Writing, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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The Dante Rossetti Awards

Chanticleer Book Reviews and Media

The Dante Rossetti Awards Categories are: Contemporary Young Adult; SFF & Paranormal; Dystopian/Edgy/Urban; Mystery/Thriller/Suspense; Historical Young Adult; YA Adventure/Romance. The Chanticleer Prize Package includes: A Prize Ribbon to use in promotion at book signings and book festivals Digital Badges for display on your website or incorporation into book covers Book stickers to identify your print books to bookstore shoppers as they browse.

Top prize

$1,000

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $99

Deadline: August 30, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Mystery, Novel, Romance, Science Fiction, Suspense, Thriller, Young Adult

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Flash Fiction Competition

Globe Soup

Globe Soup are looking for the best flash fiction of no more than 800 words. The competition features a secret location in which all participants must set their story. Participants can get extensive feedback on their entry by joining Globe Soup's writing group and free entry to their monthly micro fiction contests and other opportunities to win cash prizes!

Top prize

£1000

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $16

Deadline: December 31, 2021 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Flash Fiction, Crime, Fantasy, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult

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Caledonia Novel Award

Caledonia Novel Award

Now in our ninth year of competition, we are an Edinburgh-based, international award for unpublished and self-published novelists in all genres for adults and YA. This year's judge is Charlotte Seymour, literary agent at Johnson & Alcock. On top of the £1,500 top prize, the best entry from the UK and Ireland will receive a place on a writing course at Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre.

Top prize

£1, 500

Additional prizes

Free place on a writing course at Moniack Mhor Creative Writing Centre.

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $30

Deadline: November 01, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Novel, Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult, Romance, Suspense

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First 5 Pages Prize

Stockholm Writers Festival

SWF is proud to launch the First 5 Pages Prize to mark our 5th anniversary. Dazzle us with your brilliance. Delight us with your wit. Deceive us with your dastardly plot-twists. There will be one Grand Prize winner chosen from all entries. The winner will receive: $1000 cash, a ticket to SWF22, a pitch meeting with an agent conducted over Zoom, two night’s accommodation at a boutique hotel, and a full developmental edit donated by Reedsy, the industry’s leading platform for writing services.

Top prize

$1,000

Additional prizes

A full developmental edit donated by Reedsy & pitch meeting with an agent

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $20

Deadline: January 31, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Mystery, Novel, Novella, Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult

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2nd Annual WCWF Writing Contest

Wine Country Writers' Festival

Fire up those pens and get those unpublished stories and poems submitted to WCWF 2nd Annual Writing Contest. Three winners in each category, publication in Anthology, and your own copy. Entries: $15 or two for $25. See the contest rules and enter now. Blind Judging.

Top prize

$150

Additional prizes

Publication in an anthology

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $15

Deadline: July 29, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Mystery, Non-fiction, Poetry, Romance, Science Fiction, Science Writing, Short Story, Thriller, Young Adult

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Page Turner's Short Story Contest

Clumsy Spider Publishing

Page Turner is looking for your short story that teens will read in one sitting because they can't stop!

Top prize

$50

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: FREE

Deadline: July 30, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Fiction, Short Story, Young Adult

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The Synopsis Skirmish—a contest for querying authors

Darling Axe Editing

Summarize your novel in 500 words for a chance at a $1000 CAD prize pool! Our judge, Michelle Barker, will be asking herself one question: "Does this synopsis convince me that I'm in the hands of an adept novelist with a unique and engaging story to tell?"

Top prize

$560

Additional prizes

$200 for second place, $100 for third

Entry requirements

💰 Fee: $5

Deadline: May 31, 2022 (Expired)


Genres

Crime, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Mystery, Non-fiction, Novel, Novella, Romance, Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult

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