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  • Writer's pictureBrandi Prater

Contest 2: Graphic Novel Ads & Story


Students will create graphic ads showing why they belong at their school library based on popular graphic novels. Students will become the main character in their own story. Students can vote for their favorite graphic, and it will become a brand for the library that school year. The winner can be shared on social media, the school web page, and the weekly broadcast.


  • Open to students, 7 – 8th grade

  • Submissions must be the original work of the submitting author, no copyrighted material – including original characters and story.

  • Artwork can be hand-drawn, digital, or both.

  • Include a narrative. It can be just a scene, a few scenes, or a complete story.

  • Limited to maximum length of 15 pages, including cover page.

  • Entries should be submitted as PDF, JPEG, PNG, or physical paper.

  • Show why your main character belongs at the school

  • Entries should be school/library appropriate.

  • School Library & District reserve the right to reproduce your work.

  • One entry per participant

  • Art Supplies

  • Graphic Novel Template

  • Submission deadline is ___________


Part 1: Students will be invited to create graphic ads where they will become the main character in their own story. There will be a character design workshop scheduled at the beginning of the school year and designs will be submitted by Sept 30th. Artwork will be submitted prior to October 1st and entries will be judged on overall character design, originality, creativity, and inclusion of the theme proposed by a panel that includes the librarian, teachers, and administrators. Once the character is determined, posters will be displayed around the school to promote the library brand using the inclusive character.

Part 2: In October, we will begin a series of scheduled workshops that cover creating storyboards, telling a story using sequential art, and a comics crash course.These will be scheduled through December to ensure they are delivered prior to the story deadline.Stories will be submitted prior to Spring Break and entries will be judged on overall story, originality, creativity, and illustrations by a panel that includes the librarian, teachers, and administrators.The student winner will have their graphic novel “printed”, displayed, and read on broadcast during the month of April in celebration of School Library Month. If funds allow, we can include a small run of books to be printed of the winning story for their families and the school library collection.


The event will be promoted using the following tools:

  • Posters in the library & hallways

  • Library Display

  • Social Media

  • Daily Announcements & Weekly Broadcast (1-2 weeks prior)

  • Principal Email to Parents

  • School Marquee

  • School Home Page (News Section)

  • Announcements on Library Canvas page


Librarian will need to schedule workshops, book facilities, curate reading lists, and research small batch book printing/funding for the event.In addition, the librarian will create and organize tasks/events using a time management program to track details/deadlines.A judging panel will need to be formed prior to the graphic story deadline in March.The librarian should reach out to the community and PTO for support/funding of the contest, which will include printing and additional prizes.A Grand Prize and prizes for the Top 3 entries should be determine prior to marketing.


Librarian will introduce and promote the contest through the promotion tools listed above.

  • Provide workshops for each part of the contest.

  • Students complete and entry form for both parts of this contest. There can be multiple ways to submit, including: online forms, PDF forms (print), or email entry form.

  • Form a panel of judges for the poster design & novel portion of the contest.

  • Winning student will take a picture with their artwork and posters will be displayed throughout the building. This story and the main character will be highlight on the broadcast and should include why they belong at their school library.

  • The Top 3 winners will receive prizes, which will include art supplies and a graphic novel of their choice. The Grand Prize winner will have their graphic novel printed and receive a book bag, bookmarks, YA graphic novels, and a gift card from Barnes Noble.

  • Student winners will be included in the Yearbook in a reading or contest section.

  • The library and school web page will be updated to show the winners from both competitions.


Graphic novels provide a great alternative to traditional text-only books that draw in reluctant readers.The highly visual content makes them more engaging, and readers of all levels love them.Graphic Novels build vocabulary, develop visual literacy, aid comprehension, engage reluctant readers, and are fast paced so students can red them quickly.In addition, creating characters that symbolize a concept, storyboarding, and visualizing storylines into limited panels require critical thinking skills.This contest will engage reading, writing, and art into a single concept and include students that may not typically visit the library.The goal is to help foster a love of reading in a wider audience and invite them into the world of reading.



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