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Fiction Contest Prize: Write Where Papa Wrote

Rob O'Neal
Florida Keys News Service
The winner of the Florida Keys Flash Fiction contest can use Ernest Hemingway's studio for up to 10 days in July.

Writing contests offer all kinds of rewards,  but this one may be unique: a residency in Key West, and the opportunity to write in Ernest Hemingway's studio.

The first Florida Keys Flash Fiction contest invites writers to submit a work of 500 words or fewer between now and March 31. The winner will be selected by a representative of the Key West Literary Seminar.

The prize is a residency in Key West in July, during the annual Hemingway Days festival. That includes an air travel card for $1,500, a residency of up to 21 nights at The Studios of Key West and a $500 debit card for meals.

Also included: the opportunity to spend up to 10 days writing in the same studio Hemingway used when he lived in Key West in the 1930s and wrote works including "For Whom The Bell Tolls" and "The Snows of Kilimanjaro."

This contest is a first of its kind, according to Mike Morawksi, chief executive officer of the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum.

"For a writer to be able to occupy Hemingway's same space and soak in the same creative atmosphere he did is a priceless opportunity," Morawski said in a press release from the Monroe County Tourist Development Council, which is a contest sponsor.

The Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum is now one of the island's most popular tourist attraction, so the winner could find him or herself under observation — and keeping company with one of the many cats that live on the property.

Nancy Klingener was WLRN's Florida Keys reporter until July 2022.
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