The 2020 PBS SoCal KIDS Writers Contest is Open!

That's write! It's time to get creative and let your story be heard. Submissions are open between January 13, 2020 – July 31, 2020.

Learn more about the PBS SoCal KIDS Writers Contest here.

We know these last few weeks have been a little rough — that’s an acknowledgment of a shared experience based on what we’ve heard, seen, and felt ourselves. Due to school closures, PBS SoCal has extended the Writers Contest deadline to July 31. Each year we receive the bulk of our entries from schools or after-school programs. This year is different and we recognize that families may need a little more time to familiarize themselves with our contest’s resources and work with little ones on their stories.

It’s write about time to start writing your original stories and poems for the 2020 PBS SoCal KIDS Writers Contest. That’s write! PBS SoCal wants to read your original stories and illustrations! We will be judging entries on their originality, creative expression, storytelling, integration of story and illustrations, and overall presentation. Time to start brainstorming some ideas and let your imagination shine!

We liked some of our winning stories so much that we made them (and their illustrations) into videos! All animations were created by Henry Cram.

Contest Info

The contest is open to children in grades K-3, each entry must be an original work — written and illustrated by the entrant — and can be in English or another language, provided non-English text is translated on the same page and the translated text adheres to the accepted word count. Submissions are open between January 13, 2020 – July 31, 2020.

First, second, and third place winners will be chosen from each grade. Every child who submits an original piece will be recognized for participating with a Certificate of Appreciation.

Let your stories be heard! Use this writing activity booklet to start!


  • 1st place winners: PBS KIDS Playtime Pad; $50 gift card, books, and PBS KIDS goodies; $150 gift certificate from SVOLTA.
  • 2nd Place: PBS KIDS Plug and Play, $25 gift card, books and PBS KIDS goodies.
  • 3rd Place: $25 gift card, books and PBS KIDS goodies.
  • Special category winners: $50 gift card, books, and PBS KIDS goodies.

Entry Forms and Rules

All entries must be postmarked by July 31, 2020 and must include an Official PBS SoCal Entry Form signed by the child’s parent, guardian or teacher. Be sure to read through the contest rules.

Send Submissions

Email your stories along with your entry form to or you can mail your story along with the entry form to:

PBS SoCal, Attn: Writers Contest, Grade: __, 3080 Bristol St. Suite 400. Costa Mesa, CA 92626

More helpful resources


For more information or questions about the contest please contact