Announcing the Winners of the Iron Pen X Contest…

Hello Iron Pen Contestants!

So without any further ado, here are the winners of the 2018 Iron Pen contest by category:


1st Place: “If I Don’t Have Real Answers It Is Because We Still Don’t Know What Questions to Ask” – Melanie Hanson

2nd Place: “Social Privatization Agency: A Story of Choices” – James Patrick Schmidt

3rd Place: “Forced Patience is by No Means a Virtue” – Ryan Christensen


1st Place: “Revealing Truths” – Constance Messmer

2nd Place: “specter” – Michelle Opsahl

3rd Place: “A Harvest of Invisible Resources” – Jonathan Guyton

Honorable Mention:

“Jericho’s Theme” – Jonathan Guyton

“we are asking real questions, but still not getting real answers” – Jonathan Guyton


1st place: “Missing Biological Imperative” – Sarah Elgatian

2nd place: “The Power is Now in the Right Hands” – Michelle Ladwig 

3rd place: “Conformity’s Plague” – Ryan Christensen

Honorable Mention:

“Questions that Come to Mind” – Nathan Blaesing

Congrats to all of our winners! The Award Ceremony and Reading is this Saturday, March 3rd at 2pm, here at the MWC. The winners, 2nd, 3rd Places and Honorable mentions will be our featured readers, but anyone who participated is welcome to come and read their entry to this year’s contest. Please let us know if you plan to attend, and if you plan to read, so we have an idea of the schedule. Thanks!

We will have some light refreshments and will hand out the medals and certificates for our winners this Saturday, and we’ll also have our drawing for the full registration to the David R. Collins Writing Conference (please note that you do not need to be present to win the conference registration—anyone with a paid Iron Pen Entry will be included in the raffle). You are of course welcome to bring family & friends to help us celebrate all of your creative efforts.

We hope you had fun with this year’s prompt—everyone certainly did a great job of going from zero to finished piece in a mere 24 hours! Thank you all so much again, and many thanks to our terrific judges: Jane Carman (nonfiction), Austin Kinsey (fiction), and Laura Winton (poetry)! Please let me know if you have any other questions about the contest or the Award Ceremony this Saturday. Thanks again and have a good day…