As the Islamic Writers Alliance, Inc., was first founded with the intent of promoting literacy, it does so in various ways, one of which is offering networking and publicizing opportunities to its members.
To help the IWA, Inc. realize this main goal of promoting literacy, it has undertaken annual projects which reach out globally to this effect.
The IWA, Inc. has, traditionally since early on in its existence, been keen to sponsor annual writing contests, with three categories for each contest, yearly. It began in 2005 with its first annual poetry contest, and has sponsored this contest yearly since. Then, in 2009, it sponsored its first annual Islamic Fiction Stories contest, and has sponsored this contest yearly since then. In 2011, it co-sponsored a non-fiction essays contest along with the Zakat Foundation of America as co-sponsor. The IWA Board hopes to sponsor another non-fiction essays contest in the future. Log onto the non-fiction contests page for further announcements of this as time progresses.
The contests are traditionally managed by one of the assigned Board members, and although guidelines are usually similar each year, updated guidelines are posted on the website annually, as ammendments are generally applied concerning dates or other specific submission requirements.
Judges for these contests are arranged by the Contest Manager for that particular year, and are most generally well-experienced authors of the genre, and sometimes are also IWA members. There is an explicit criteria for judging which the judges are educated on, and follow strictly for the review process. The judges are given the only stories to review and judge, having all personal data of the author removed prior by the contest manager, to ensure that no personal preference of the judge enters into the picture. All in all, the protocol of operating procedure of the contests is held in utmost ethical manner, with mindfulness to improvements yearly.
Cash prizes, gift certificates to online bookstores, and a certificate of participation and rank are among the prizes awarded to the winners of each of the three categories of each contest yearly.
In addition, the winning entries and author names are posted on the IWA's website announcements section as well as on the individual contest pages. Each winning entry is also granted a special individual page for visitor viewing/reading.
The contests are open to the public, and categories for entrants are divided into: youth (under 18), adult (18 and above), and IWA members.
School participation as a class project is highly promoted, but entries will be accepted on an individual basis, not as a class entry with multiple authors for one entry.
For more detailed information, keep tuned to the IWA's announcement page or specific contests pages, or feel free to contact any of the Board members directly.