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ABIGAIL MATSON - the weed that grows in the sidewalk crack.JPG


Walter Johnson High School's Literary and Arts Magazine

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the weed that grows in the sidewalk crack by Abigail Matson from Eras

Based in Bethesda, Maryland, United States

Winners of WJ's 23-24 Creative Writing Contest

To read the winning pieces, click on the yellow buttons to the right

Congratulations to our winners! First place winners will be published in this year's magazine! Pieces went through two rounds of judging. Final winners were selected by professional writers from the Bethesda Writing Center. Judge's Bios: Poetry: Emily Holland (they/she) is a genderqueer lesbian writer. Their poems appear or are forthcoming in publications including HAD, Shenandoah, DIALOGIST, Little Patuxent Review, lstw, and Black Warrior Review. They are the author of the chapbook Lineage (dancing girl press) and the recipient of multiple fellowships from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities. She is currently the editor of Poet Lore, an adjunct professor at GWU, and the chair of OutWrite, DC’s LGBTQIA+ literary festival. For more, visit their website: Contact her at for any questions regarding Poet Lore. Short Story: Hannah Grieco is a writer and editor based in Washington, DC. She edits novels and prose collections for Alan Squire Publishing and serves as Editor-in-Chief of the ASP Bulletin, the press’s online literary magazine. She edited the anthologies And If That Mockingbird Don’t Sing and Already Gone. Her work can be read in a variety of publications, including The Washington Post, Al Jazeera, The Rumpus, Poet Lore, Fairy Tale Review, and more. She teaches writing at American University and The Writer’s Center. Find her online at and on Twitter/IG @writesloud. Essay: Amy Freeman is a freelance writer with bylines in The Washington Post,, Santa Fe Writing Project, HuffPost, Furious Gravity, and elsewhere. She is Development Director at The Writer’s Center.

Poetry Winners

First Place: Asa Illahi

Second Place: Cody Herwald

Third Place: Charis Wong

Short Story Winners

First Place: Madeline Moses

Second Place: Lucy Stutz

Third Place: Sabrina Solares Lisboa

Essay Winners

First Place: Greta Magary

Second Place: Asa Illahi

Third Place: Lauren Levine



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