Write to the River — Spring 2019 call for submissions

Touched by the Morning Sun: Our spring photo from Pine Bend Bluffs Scientific and Natural Area depicts the beauty and energy of seasonal transformation, with the sun's rays expanding onto our still-frozen river landscape. Photo by Tom Reiter. 

After record snowfall and persistent river ice, the first signs of spring have finally arrived: longer days, intense sunlight, pools of meltwater and flood warnings. How does spring along the river affect you? We'd like to know.

Write to the River is a creative writing project to inspire artistic engagement with our river environment. We invite you to share an original poem or short prose response to seasonal images along the Upper Mississippi River. Our spring 2019 photo prompt by photographer Tom Reiter features the morning sun rising over a snowy horizon with its rays reaching out to the river.

No previous creative writing experience is necessary and all ages and styles are welcome — short prose works, free verse, formal verse, your own verse!

All submissions will be published in our next online edition. We may also showcase some submissions in future issues of Mississippi Messages, our biweekly e-newsletter. Sign up to get each season's prompt and news of edition releases.

Need a few ideas or prompts to get started?

  • List the first words that come to mind.  
  • What story is being told? What is the subject?
  • What feelings are evoked? Does it remind you of a past experience?
  • Imagine being here — what sounds, smells and tastes might you experience?

Ready to share?

Email your piece to writetotheriver@fmr.org by May 15, 2019. Please include your name and address (or at least city and ZIP). And if you're under 18 years old, please include your age and a contact number where we can reach a guardian or parent in case we're able to publish your work.

Submit your piece in whatever fashion works for you, in the body of the email or attached as a .pdf, .doc or .docx. Remember, this is a friendly call for submissions. There is no grading, only appreciation.

Happy writing to the river! We look forward to hearing from you.

Tom Reiter