September 01. 2018 5:43PM

Historical society offers contest for young writers

PORTSMOUTH - The Portsmouth Historical Society is offering a Young Writers Contest that's linked to an art exhibition now running at Discover Portsmouth.

"The community has responded so well to the Gertrude Fiske art exhibit that we've added a special new program. We want our kids to be a part of that show before it ends," said Claire Spollen, the society's education coordinator, who designed the contest.

"Our goal is to find new ways to inspire a broader audience to learn something about history, arts or culture in an interesting way," she said.

To enter the contest, select one work of art by Fiske that's on display at Discover Portsmouth, 10 Middle St. After spending a little time getting to know your favorite work, then write a short piece about it - or inspired by it. You can create a poem or maybe a story. You might come up with a play, a conversation, a newspaper article or use any writing style you like best. The only rule: The writing entered into the contest should relate in some way to the work by Fiske.

Submissions will be divided into three age groups: grades 3 to 5, grades 6 to 8 and grades 9 to 12 based on the 2018-19 school year. Entries may be emailed to, dropped off at Discover Portsmouth between 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. or sent by mail to Claire Spollen, Young Writers Contest, Portsmouth Historical Society, P.O. Box 728, Portsmouth, NH 03802. All entries must be submitted (and postmarked) by midnight Saturday, Sept. 22.

A panel of judges will evaluate each entry on its content, creativity, expression, clarity, quality and connection to the artwork. A first prize and honorable mention will be awarded in each division at a ceremony Tuesday, Sept. 28, at Discover Portsmouth. The exhibit closes Thursday, Sept. 30.

For more details about the contest, look for the link at