Nutshell Narratives - 2019-02 (CLOSED)

We are proud to announce the winners of our second Nutshell Narrative Writing Contest!

Grand Prize: Choosing Tulips – by Juma (Senior)
Grand Runner Up: Delicate Strength – by Rebecka Pettersson (College) 

Special congratulations to Juma and Rebecka and to all twelve top winners!  The three winners for each flower prompt are listed above the appropriate picture/haiku, followed by the complete short list for each prompt, in alphabetical order.

Congratulations to everyone who entered this contest. There were many unforgettable, brilliant stories entered.  You writers are incredibly talented, endlessly imaginative, and very prolific! 

Ongoing Contests

Great Writing never ends!  You may want to read the stories from our first short story writing contest for enjoyment and inspiration:

Previous Contest

Our talented members have come up with some great new prompts for the next contest!  You can get a head start now on our third contest before it’s announced to the general public:

Next Contest

New way to Win

We are now inviting members to submit their own suggestions for Nutshell Narratives flower prompts!  If your prompt is selected, you will get a permanent Winners Page and a free life-time subscription to

Prompt Suggestions

Our judge for this contest was Dr. Regina Higgins from Lexington, Kentucky.  Regina is a writer, editor and masterful storyteller.  We are honored to have her as a member of the ZenGarden club.  She tells us that she thoroughly enjoyed reading all the stories in our Early Spring Nutshell Narrative contest.  There were so many good ones, it was hard to narrow down the the short list and pick the winners.  Thank you, Regina, for your dedication to good writing!

Guidelines for entering:

  • Pick one of the four prompts, and write a short story about it in 350 words or less. 
  • All entries must be family-friendly
  • You must be a Member to enter – Membership is free and easy!  Free Registration
  • Write your story, then fill out the entry form in the link below
  • You may enter as many times as you like, but each entry requires a separate entry form
  • Accepting entries until Wednesday May 15, 2019 5 pm ET
  • Check this page for contest updates

Contest judges and prizes:

  • Each entry will be previewed by a ZenGarden reader. Entries will be disqualified if they a) are not related to the prompt b) contain excessive spelling, grammar, or punctuation errors or c) if they contain any element that is not family-friendly. 
  • All reviewed entries that qualify will be sent to the contest judge, who will determine all winners
  • A winner will be chosen for each flower prompt
  • A grand prize winner will be chosen from among the four winners
  • Grand prize – $50.00 plus free life-time subscription to and permanent publication on the site
  • The other three winners – free life-time subscription to and permanent publication on the site
Here are the four prompts that were used in our contest!
The total number of entries is posted above each prompt, followed by the top three winners for that flower/haiku prompt.
The short list for each prompt is posted below the picture/haiku, in alphabetical order.  Congratulations, everyone!
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