Juniors and seniors attending Utah's public and private schools are invited to enter essays in the fifth annual Deseret Morning News/John Hughes Young Writers Contest. This year's theme is "If I could change one thing...."

Three winning essays will be published in the Deseret Morning News. The first-place essay winner will receive $1,000, second place $500 and third place $250.

Entries are to be no more than 1,000 words and must reflect the contest theme. The essays are to be non-fiction, based upon personal experience, observation or opinion, but can tackle any aspect the theme might inspire; for instance: "If I could change one thing ..." — "about me," for instance, or about school, Utah, America or the world, etc.

The contest is named for former Deseret Morning News editor John Hughes, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, who championed the competition in its first years and wanted to cultivate good writing among Utah's young people.

His successor, editor Joe Cannon, supports that mission.

"We value good, clear writing and the careful thought that such writing requires," Cannon said. "Encouraging and recognizing such efforts among high school students continues, we believe, to be a worthy goal."

Young Writers Contest entries must be received at the newspaper by 5 p.m. Friday, Nov. 3. The winners will be announced later that month.

Entries may be submitted electronically to [email protected] (no attachments, please) or mailed or delivered to:

Deseret Morning News Young Writers Contest

30 E. 100 South

P.O. Box 1257

Salt Lake City, UT 84110

Please include the writer's name, address, phone number and high school. No handwritten entries, please. Questions can be e-mailed to [email protected].