In a profile of Annie Dillard by John Freeman, published in the March/April 2016 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, the Pulitzer Prize–winning author demonstrates the generosity she is known for as a writer and mentor by speaking about how working in a soup kitchen can benefit a writer. “There are many unproductive days when you might hate yourself otherwise,” writes Dillard in a correspondence with Freeman. “You are eating the food, using the water, breathing the air—and NOT HELPING. But if you feed the hungry, you can’t deny you’re doing something worth doing.” Write an essay about a time in which an act of service added meaning to your creative practice. How did this intimate exchange help fuel you as a writer?
Find details about every creative writing competition—including poetry contests, short story competitions, essay contests, awards for novels, grants for translators, and more—that we’ve published in the Grants & Awards section of Poets & Writers Magazine during the past year. We carefully review the practices and policies of each contest before including it in the Writing Contests database, the most trusted resource for legitimate writing contests available anywhere.