top of page
  • Writer's pictureAdmin

Marley Mejia Wins RPLA Gold

Media Release


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE. October 16, 2021: Naples, Florida. The Florida Writers Association, Inc., (FWA) has announced that Marley Mejia of Naples, Florida, won a prestigious Royal Palm Literary Award (RPLA). Marley’s winning entry, Glioblastoma, won the Gold Award for Unpublished Non-fiction, ages 12 to 15.

The awards were announced at FWA’s recent remote awards ceremony. This annual competition, which received 577 submissions, was RPLA’s twentieth.

“Even in these difficult times, writers are writing—and marvelously,” said Chris Coward, RPLA chairperson. “And the RPLA team rose to the challenge.”

In all, the competition covered 27 adult genres and 5 Youth genres, with published and unpublished entries considered separately. There were four grand awards, as well.

· Published Book of the Year: Tales from the Eerie Canal, General Catch-All, by Barbara


· Unpublished Book of the Year: From Hell’s Heart, Thriller or Suspense, by Dana J. Summers

· Best Children’s Book: Pling’s Party, Children’s Picture Book, by Arielle Haughee

· The Candice Coghill Memorial Award for the best youth entry: “Ode to Rain,” Unpublished Poetry, ages 12 to 15, by N.M. Collett

“It is our sincere wish that all RPLA awards help the winners to market their manuscript or published book. We also hope that the detailed feedback from the judges, which all entrants receive, is useful, as well,” Ms. Coward said.

“I am so proud of our SPARK students, Marley for her Gold Award and Nicole for her Candace Coghill Memorial Award,” stated Darlene Thiele, SPARK director and writing club mentor. “Middle school is an age where students’ creativity can really soar, and I am grateful for a program like Florida Writers Association for Youth which provides an avenue for teens to showcase their writing.”

The Florida Writers Association, 1,600 members strong and growing, is a nonprofit 501(c)(6) organization that supports the state’s established and emerging writers. Membership is open to the public.

The Royal Palm Literary Awards competition is a service of the Florida Writers Association established to recognize excellence in its members’ published and unpublished works while providing objective and constructive written assessments for all entrants.

For additional information, visit the FWA website at, where you’ll also find more about RPLA and the complete list of 2021 winners. Or, contact for details about SPARK’s writing contest winners.

78 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

SPARK is featured on Water for South Sudan Why We IGC: SPARK Hybrid Education Center Mar 13 Each month leading up to IGC 2024, we highlight the educators and scho


bottom of page