Great Canadian Longform’s New Faces of 2020-21 Contest

Every semester, journalism and writing students across the country create longform pieces as projects for class, but most of them go unpublished. When I think back to the creative non-fiction course I took as an undergraduate, very few of the pieces created (including my own) ever saw the light of day.

That’s why Great Canadian Longform is excited to launch its first-ever contest to try and bring some of these works to the wider world. Please read on for contest details. Further details on judging will be announced after the submission period is closed. There are no “places” or “ranks” in this contest. We expect to announce the winners in late August 2021.

To encourage the widest variety of submissions, there is no entry fee and no age restriction to participate in this contest.

At least three winners will receive:

-A $100 cash prize

-Feedback on their piece and assistance with crafting a pitch and placing their piece with a Canadian magazine, newspaper or digital outlet (No guarantees, but we’ll do our best to help!)

-A Q&A about them and their piece posted at GCL’s website and shared with our audience

Our goal is that these prizes will help boost the profiles of these emerging writers, while also hopefully creating an opportunity for them to publish their work and get paid. Pieces on all topics are welcomed from personal essays to reported features.

Eligibility to enter:

-Your piece was written for an undergraduate feature writing/creative non-fiction/journalism class taken in 2020-21 at a Canadian university/college (All majors/concentrations welcome to apply)

-Your primary residence is in Canada

-Your piece has a minimum word count of 2,000 (Sorry, no exceptions.)

-Your piece has not yet been published elsewhere online

-At the time of entry you haven’t been published outside of student media or a personal blog/website. (This is to encourage writers who haven’t yet had the opportunity to publish and build a portfolio and connections with other Canadian media outlets.)

Dos and Don’ts


-Do send all entries to

-Do email your piece as a PDF with your last name and page numbers on each page.

-Do put the following information in your email body: Your first and last name, academic institution, course and instructor name, the title of your piece, a short description of how/why you chose the topic of your piece (up to 100 words) and a brief personal bio (up to 50 words).


-Don’t send in multiple entries. (One per person please!)

-Don’t submit academic papers. This is strictly a contest for nonfiction essays and reported features.

-Don’t submit something you wrote specifically for this contest. Our goal is to recognise pieces that were worked on as class projects. (We will verify this for winning entries.)

How to submit:

Please email submissions (information in email body, piece attached as a PDF) to Rob Csernyik at

The deadline for submissions is Friday, June 18, 2021 at 11:59 PM Pacific.


Please email us with any questions, but note that it may take us a few days to get back to you.

Good luck,

Rob Csernyik

Editor, Great Canadian Longform


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