Georgia Museum of Agriculture to Co-Host ‘Back Roads of Georgia’ Essay Contest

TIFTON – The Gallery at the Georgia Museum of Agriculture at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, in conjunction with Georgia Backroads Magazine and the Tifton-Tift County Arts Council, will host a “Back Roads of Georgia” essay competition through Sept. 16.The contest runs in conjunction with the “Back Roads of Georgia” photo competition and a new exhibit which begins Oct. 19.

Gallery Coordinator Polly Huff said the exhibit will be on display through Jan. 25, 2014.The top three essays will be displayed during the exhibit and excerpts read during the awards reception at 6 p.m. on Oct. 18. Any Georgia resident 18 years or older is eligible to participate.


            A total of $1,000 in cash prizes will be awarded by the Tifton-Tift County Arts Council, with special consideration for possible publishing by Georgia Backroads Magazine. The first place winner will receive $500, the second place winner will receive $200, and the third place winner will receive $100. Four essays will receive honorable mention status, along with a $50 cash prize. All seven finalists will receive an annual pass to the Georgia Museum of Agriculture & Historic Village.


            South Georgia author Janice Daugharty will judge the essay contest.Daugharty is a Pulitzer Prize nominee and author of numerous novels and shorter works, including her latest book “Two Shades of Morning”. She is also the current Writer in Residence for ABAC.


            Essays should be no longer than 4,000 words and should address the “Back Roads of Georgia” theme. Essays can be memoirs or other personal accounts; profiles of people, places or events; lyrical essays; essays related to nature; investigative pieces; or travel or food narratives. Essays should be of literary and journalistic interest with attention paid to voice and writing techniques such as scene and dialogue. Essays must be submitted in Microsoft Word or a similar format.No previously published work will be accepted.The writer’s name should not be on the essay itself.  


            The essay and cover letter must be submitted via email by Sept. 16 to Huff at The cover letter is required with each essay submission. The letter must include the writer’s name, address, email, and phone number.It must also include the title of essay, the name that will appear on the check for the entry fee, and the entry fee check number. This information should be in the main body of the email as well.


            Participants may enter up to three submissions. Each submission should be in a separate email with its own cover letter. An entry fee of $5 for each essay should be paid by check and mailed to Polly Huff, GMA Gallery Curator, 1392 Whiddon Mill Road, Tifton, GA  31793. The writer’s name and title of essay(s) should be on the memo line of the check. Checks should be made out to the Georgia Museum of Agriculture. The submission process is not complete until the fee is paid.


            Please e-mail all essay submissions to Huff at For any questions regarding the essay contest, interested persons can contact Dr. Sandra Giles, Professor of English, at