With awards for essays, short stories, poetry, and novels, there is something here for everyone. Books must already be published. The entry deadline is December 1st. For example, you can find wonderful regional contests sponsored by your local library, school district, or writing festival.
When they write for teachers, it can sometimes feel like a hoop to jump through. Stay tuned to the contest web page so you can find it when school begins.
See the rules for more details. Your stanzas — rhyming or not — could be worth a fair amount of money in these poetry competitions.
Because of the paperwork involved, it might make sense to choose the top essays from your class to send in to the national contest. Submissions must be published in the prior year so books published in are eligible for the award.