When BYU installed two short story dispensers on campus last fall through the nonprofit Short Édition, students were invited to participate in a writing contest with the 13 other universities that house the dispensers.
The results are in: among competition from Harvard, Carnegie Mellon and other top schools, BYU students swept the contest, winning all of the first-place juried prizes. Several were also named runners-up in the juried and public competition.
“BYU students have compelling stories to tell, and they tell them beautifully,” said College of Humanities Associate Dean Leslee Thorne-Murphy, who helped facilitate BYU’s participation in the contest. “They represented our university admirably.”
Contestants submitted works of short fiction, creative nonfiction and poetry of 8,000 characters or less to be ranked both by guest judges and the public. The eight BYU winners will receive a monetary prize, and some of the winning pieces will be published internationally in more than 300 dispensers worldwide.
Additionally, because BYU students submitted more entries than any other school—contributing 272 stories and poems in total—the university has won a third dispenser that will be placed on campus in the near future.
“We will use the new dispenser to offer stories in a variety of languages, providing the campus community with a fun way to brush up on reading skills in other languages,” said Thorne-Murphy.
Read all contest winners’ pieces here, and check out BYU’s two current short story dispensers for free short stories and poems on the go. One is located in the Harold B. Lee Library near the circulation desk, and the other will be making a tour of campus, beginning in the JFSB student commons.