Prosper High School junior Payton Rackley won first place in the Texas Book Festival Youth Fiction Writing Contest with her story “Mossy Green.”

Hosted by the Texas Book Festival and the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at the University of Texas at Austin, the Fiction Writing Contest encourages creative writing in Texas schools. Middle and high school Texas students are invited to submit a piece of original fiction, no more than 2,000 words in length. Each year the Festival provides a unique theme. This year the theme was “Note to Self.”

Submitted entries were considered in three divisions: grades 7-8; grades 9-10; and grades 11-12 and were judged by Texas Book Festival authors, local educators and leaders in the publishing industry. As a first place winner, Miss Rackley received $250.00 and an expense paid trip to Austin to accept her award and to participate on a panel to discuss her work. “Mossy Green” can be read on the Texas Book Festival website at