This exciting new writing contest is funded by Roslyn Margles, in honour of her late husband Max Margles, for whom the Children’s Library is named. The Roslyn and Max Margles Young Writers’ Contest is held in partnership with the Quebec Writers’ Federation (QWF). 



Who can enter the contest?  

Children in grades 3 to 6. 

When is the contest?  

Send us your writing by Wednesday, April 10, 2024. 

What can I write?  

One poem or one short story. It can be true or made up. All characters and plots should be your own.  

  • In English or French
  • Typed or hand-written 
  • Can be something you have already written that you’re proud of 

Can be illustrated or in comic format, but the judges will choose winners based on your writing and the story. 

If you need some inspiration, here are some ideas!  

Can I ask an adult for help? 

The poem or short story needs to be your own work, so no one can rewrite it for you. You may have a teacher, or another trusted adult look over your work, ask you questions, and give you suggestions or guidance.  

We will also offer two drop-in writing clinics where you can share your work with a real writer from the Quebec Writers’ Federation, and they will help you develop it.  

How do I submit my writing? 

Please give us your story or poem with this Submission Form
There are two ways you can give us your work.  

  1. ONLINE: Fill out this Submission Form and attach your story or poem. 
  2. IN PERSON: Bring your story or poem to the Youth Desk at the Max Margles Children’s Library (5851 Cavendish Blvd, Côte-Saint-Luc). Print out and attach the Submission Form (or ask us for one at the desk). 

What Happens Next?  

Well-known children’s authors  P.J. Bracegirdle, Marie-Louise Gay, and Anne Renaud will choose the winning stories or poems based on creativity and style. 

First place, second place, and honourable mention winners for grades 3 to 4 and grades 5 to 6 will be contacted after Wednesday, May 8.  

What can I win? 

All finalists will be recognized at the awards ceremony and published in the QWF’s online magazine, carte blanche.  

First and Second place winners will also be awarded a gift certificate from Babar Books.  

Everyone who enters the contest will receive a certificate of participation, will be invited to the Awards Ceremony, and will be published in a Roslyn and Max Margles Young Writers’ Contest Anthology, which will be available at the Max Margles Children’s Library. 


If you’re having trouble thinking of what to write about, read these prompts and see if they spark your creativity! 

  1.   Pick an object you like. Imagine it’s thinking. What is it thinking about?
  2. Look at the moon. What do you think it is made of? Or thinking? And why?
  3. Imagine someone who is one person in daylight, and another person at night. What would happen if the two different parts of that person met?
  4. Imagine you’ve found a secret room in your house.
  5. Write a story set on another planet.
  6. Write from the point of view of an animal at the zoo.
  7. Write an ode (a poem in praise of something) to something unexpected, overlooked or unpopular. For example, an ode to an old shoe, or a spider, or broccoli, or even homework.
  8. See if you can find some magic, some beauty about it, you can share with the world.
  9. Write a story with a character who is misunderstood or doesn’t want to be what others expect them to be. For example, what would a story about a friendly bear be like? Or a bee who doesn’t want to make honey but would rather write poems? Or a monster that doesn’t want to scare people?
  10. Start with one of these phrases:
  • The scariest thing that ever happened to me was….
  • Every word I write is a seed… 
  • One day, a crow flew away with my (brother’s, sister’s, mother’s, father’s, grandmothers’, grandfather’s etc.) phone…