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Writer of the Year Award

January 29th, 2016

rachel-dove-blogAs you probably already know, we hold a ‘Writer of the Year Award’ and our winner for 2016 has just been announced as Rachel Louise Dove. Congratulations Rachel! Since enrolling, she has been doing well selling articles and stories to a variety of magazines. The real feather in her cap, though, has been winning the Flirty Fiction Competition that Prima held last year in conjunction with Mills & Boon.

But the Award isn’t just about the writer who has sold the most articles/stories or made the most money. One of the reasons why we chose Rachel is because she has used her writing to further a good cause – raising over £2000 for cancer charities by contributing three of her stories to anthologies.

We also had four worthy runners up, each with their own interesting story to tell. Congratulations also go to Katherine Kavanagh who’s found a niche writing on her specialist subject – the circus, and Beatrice Charles who has recently won a competition to write a children’s book. This year, we also had some terrific stories from our overseas students. We picked two of them as runners up: Nidhi Paneri from India who has found writing a liberating experience and Gabriel Adukpo whose writing on agricultural topics has earned him not only a good income but also a trip to Europe.

We hold this event every year, so why not read their full stories? If you’re a student and have had work published recently, or have a good story to tell about your writing experiences, you might consider entering for the 2017 Award. The prize for the winner is £250 and each runner up receives £50.

One thing that our winners demonstrate is that doing well in a reputable competition can certainly raise your profile as a writer. Both Rachel and Beatrice have won competitions and this has given them an additional opportunity to publish their work and get some publicity. So always try to make an effort each year to enter a few competitions that take your fancy. But before parting with the entry fee always make sure that they are run by well-respected organisations.

Last week I promised some ideas to get you out and about – so let’s have a round-up for February, starting in Scotland and working our way down the UK via Wales! That way, there’ll be something for everyone.

The Winter Words Book Festival is held in Pitlochry  from 12th to 20th February.

Forget about the flooding in the Lake District. It’s still a terrific place for a winter break, and where better to visit than The Wordsworth Trust at Dove Cottage which hosts a wide variety of events not just in February but throughout the year.

The Dylan Thomas Centre is  another place that holds year-round events – and in a part of the world that’s ideal for a winter break combining beautiful scenery with the warmth of Swansea’s hospitable people.

Right in the middle of the country, the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust will be holding events in all five Shakespeare houses in Stratford-upon-Avon – and there’ll be more of them than ever this year as it’s the 400th anniversary of the bard’s death.

Finally, in the South West Bath Literature Festival will take place from 26th February to 6th March, featuring some really well-known authors. (Again, a wonderful location for a weekend re-charging those winter-depleted batteries.)

I hope I’ve given you some ideas, but even if you don’t make it to one of these there might be a local lit fest that you could try – they only grow and become more famous if they get support. Or failing that, then just get away for a couple of days to find some inspiration for your writing!

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About The Author: Diana Nadin

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