Graphic Novel Contest

Create your own graphic novel and submit it for a prize in our third annual Graphic Novel Contest!

Rules & Instructions

  • Open to Huntingdon Valley Library patrons in grades 3-8.
  • Participants may write/draw a graphic novel on their own OR in pairs. Pairs can either work with one author & one illustrator or share the writing/drawing duties. Students working in pairs should be in the same grade group: 3rd/4th, 5th/6th, or 7th/8th.
  • One entry per student.
  • Stories must be original and can be on any subject.
  • Stories must be presented in a comics format, using framed panels. See the Graphic Novel Contest Info Sheet for an example.
  • All illustrations must be original and hand-drawn. No digital or internet-generated pictures will be eligible for prizes. The frames for the panels can be printed, rather than hand-drawn, if desired. To keep a level playing field for all participants, drawings created in a computer program will not be accepted.
  • Text may be typed and either printed on the paper before drawing or taped/glued to the page. There should not be any pages with just text and no pictures.
  • Use 8 ½ x 11 paper only. Leave at least a 1-inch margin on both sides of each page, including the cover (for binding purposes). Do not use staples. Number the pages. 
  • Use non-smear markers, crayons, or colored pencils for illustrations. 
  • Include a title page with the title of the story, author/illustrator’s name(s), age(s), grade(s), and school(s). Please keep in mind that this page will be included in the copy bound for the library if you win. Feel free to use first or last name initials if you are uncomfortable with the student’s whole name on the title page.
  • All entries MUST include an official completed submission form for each person who worked on the graphic novel. This information is for contact use only and will not be public. Click here and go to page 2 for the Submission Form.
  • DEADLINE – All entries must be submitted to the library by 5 pm on Friday, March 31.

Optional – Virtual Cartooning Class

  • Learn how to draw cartoons in this virtual class taught by Denine Wish from Mermaid Arts Studios.
  • Wednesday, March 8 from 6:30-7:30 pm
  • Open to students in grades 3-5.
  • Registration is required. Sign Up!


  • First, second, and third place winners may by chosen for each grade group.
  • Grade groups are 3rd/4th, 5th/6th, and 7th/8th.
  • Award categories are Best Story and Best Art.


  • First place entries (for all grade groups and categories) will be bound into one volume and entered into the library’s permanent collection.
  • First place winners in both categories will receive a spiral-bound copy of their graphic novelThe same student(s) may win in both categories, but if this happens, each student will only receive one bound copy of their story.
  • All winners will receive a small prize.
  • All entrants will receive a certificate of participation.
  • Prizes and certificates will be given out at a Reception for the participants and their guests on Tuesday, May 2 at 7 pm.

Thank you to the Friends of Huntingdon Valley Library for sponsoring this contest!

Print out the Graphic Novel Contest Info Sheet that includes the rules and instructions, official submission form, and a format example.