Ohio Valley Has The Write Stuff

Photo Provided Some of the winners of the Ohio Valley Writing Contest gather after the awards ceremony at Martins Ferry Public Library on April 26. They are, from left, Andy Roberts, Olivia Stephens, Gianna Blake, Braydan Mahon and Ava Mick.

The inaugural Ohio Valley Writing Contest fetched a fantastic response, according to organizers. Winners were presented certificates and prizes in front of a standing-room only crowd on April 26 at the Martins Ferry Public Library auditorium.

“We were actually really overwhelmed with how much of a positive response we had,” said Elizabeth James, reference librarian. “We had over 80 people show up to the awards ceremony. It was overwhelming and humbling, too.”

The contest was sponsored and organized by the Ohio Valley Writers, a group that meets monthly at the Wheeling Artisan Center to share their work and learn about the writing trade. Entries were solicited from elementary-age children and adults in Belmont and Ohio counties. James assisted with contacting the local schools. Seventy-five entries were received.

The group plans to make it an annual event and expand it next year.

“Ohio Valley Writers will be hosting this writing contest next year, for sure, and we plan to extend our reach to other counties in the tri-state area. We couldn’t have done it without Elizabeth James of the Martins Ferry library,” said Christina Fisanick of Ohio Valley Writers.

The winners are:


1. Andrew Harrar for “Chasing Zodiac-A True Crime Story”

2. Natalie Kovacs for “Things We Tuck Away”

3. Earl Nicodemus for “The Rainbow on the Water”


1. B.J. Boord for “Alive”

2. Tyler Butterworth for “Through the Glass”

3. Vickie P. Taylor for “Into the Storm”


1. John Knight for “twenty-2”

2. Catherine Wood for “A Language Beyond”

3. Cynthia Jo Talbert for “My Paul”


1. Andy Roberts for “Delicious Bugs”

2. Braydan Mahon for “When I am Proud of Myself”

3. Olivia Stephens for “A Time I was Proud of Myself”


1. Emma Wade for “I Will Never Forget”

2. Micah Kramer for “Gravity”

3. Gianna Blake for “The Canoe Trip”


1. Ava Mick for “Inspiration Everywhere”

2. Gianna Landis for “Mac Attack”

3. Asher Chao for “Brothers Are”

The Junior Writer Award for Best First Grade Entry went to Noelle Depew for “New Slime”