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21st Birthday Competition Winners

The winner of prize draw to win a laptop: Eileen Murray

Eileen Murray 


October Winner

Write a spooky story in 50 words
My bicycle wobbled when the spectre slithered out of dark fog and wrapped phantom arms tightly around my waist.
Screaming and shaking with terror I pedalled faster; desperate to dislodge my hideous passenger. I needed light. My mobile rang and lit up. Light! The spectre moaned miserably and slithered away.



September Winner

Treasure Hunt: I Love The Writers Bureau

Beverley Eaves



August Winner

 Write a book pitch 

Rita Elliot

Marley Brown has three problems:
her flat is too small,
her debt is too big,
and the stranger with the gun says
he really needs her help.


July Winner 

Write the two opening sentences for a travel article

Lorna D'Alton

 Zululand - "At another time the dramatic red and gold of the African sunset spilling over the hills of Zululand would have been awe-inspiring, but right now it was merely background. A Sangoma, adorned with shells, beads and goat skins, was about to throw the bones and connect me to my ancestors."



June Winner

Come up with the first line of a novel

 Puneet Madhok

"Where I come from," said Zakir Ali, "it's the girl's horoscope we see and not her face."


May Winner

Write a caption for the following photograph.

Jo Hughes

"He had asked for a root and branch review of their IT system, but this was not what he expected. "

21st caption competition

Image courtesty of Johannes Hjorth


April Winner

Prepare a Twitter Review

Nicola Lowes

Review of Chichester Writers Circle in West Sussex:

"Chichester Writers' Circle or Liquorice Allsorts? Various oddly assorted characters making a sweet, tantalizing treat. Inspiration promised!"

March Winner

Find a writing glitch

Anthea Johnston

"Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands" (Church newsletter)


February Winner

Write a headline

Allwell Okpi

"Learn to write and earn for life"

January Winner

Write a poem in 21 words

Su Hughes from Devon

Grandma Ruby

This I remember:

you served potted shrimp spread

on potted dreams

in your white bread buttered

geranium cluttered

busy-lizzie life.


Theresa Gooda Writers Bureau's Student of the Year 2021

“I began my first Writers Bureau course (Comprehensive Creative Writing) in 2007. Having more than covered the course fees from published pieces I have never looked back. Initially my ambitions were to get going. I knew I wanted to be a writer, I just didn’t know how to go about it, or, if I’m honest, quite what I wanted to write. Since, I have gradually blended a teaching career with writing, first with articles and short stories, then increasing the writing commitment dramatically when I secured an agent in 2016 to ghostwrite a series of memoirs. This year I have undertaken The Art of Writing Poetry course to really hone my skills in what I now realise is a genre I love - and have already had my first poems published.”

Theresa Gooda - Writers Bureau Student of the Year 2021

Read Theresa's full story

Sarah Leavesly"Since starting The Art of Writing Poetry course, I have been published many times under my pen name Sarah James, won competitions and made money."

Sarah Leavesley


Noel Gama"I was so excited about the immense potential of the Internet that I enrolled for yet another Writers Bureau course, ‘Writing for the Internet'."

Noel Gama


Gilian Atack

"The course has helped me write a story that evokes strong emotions; the constructive but motivational feedback I received from The Writers Bureau has helped me knock down the barriers to self-doubt. Recently, I held my first book launch where I talked about how and why I wrote my story."

Gillian Atack

Read Gillian's Story

Cathal Coyle

"My short-term intention is to continue combining writing for newspapers and magazines with my current job. I'm enjoying my writing 'sideline' but I may find as time goes on that I want to make the transition to full-time writer."

Cathal Coyle


Institute of Training and Occupational Learning

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