Charity, Culture, Education, Latest News, Personalities | Posted: Friday, July 24th, 2020 at 3:49 pm | return to news

Minette Walters offers top tips for young writers

Best-selling author Minette Walters has revealed her top tips for young writers wanting to enter a short story competition which will raise money for Julia’s House, the Dorset and Wiltshire children’s hospice charity.

Best-selling author Minette Walters
Best-selling author Minette Walters

The competition for a short story entitled ‘A Different Summer’ has two categories for children aged 5-9 and 10-16. It will be judged by a panel chaired by Minette, who has been a patron of Julia’s House for more than 20 years.

Children’s imaginations can run wild as they compete for the £100 prize money, but those wishing to enter will need to act quickly  – there are just two weeks left to send your submissions in before the competition closes on 31 July.

“Don’t feel you have to write about your own summer. It might as easily be a magical, mystery summer or a bleak, sad summer that belongs to someone else,” Minette explains. “Imagine the story you want to write and then choose the words that best describe it. Finally, never forget that readers like stories with exciting beginnings and satisfying endings.“

Minette, whose novels The Ice House and The Sculptress were both adapted as popular TV dramas, is joined on the judging panel by Mark Tattersall, artistic director of Dorchester Arts and Ebony Robinson, a Julia’s House Young Ambassador.

“I and the other judges are so looking forward to reading your stories,” reveals Minette. “We expect to be dazzled by your amazing imaginations.”

The winners and runners up in both categories will have their stories published on the Julia’s House website, with the winners receiving £100 each and the runners up £25 each. The prizes have been kindly donated by the Addo Food Group.

Stories must be a maximum of 300 words for 5-9 age group and 500 words for 10-16 age group. Entries must be submitted on an official entry form available from the Julia’s House website juliashouse.org/summershorties or by post from Julia’s House Summer Shorties, Barclays House, 1 Wimborne Road, Poole, BH15 2BB.

There is no entry fee but anyone taking part in the competition can make a donation to help Julia’s House continue its vital work caring for local children with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions.

The competition is open now and has a closing date of Friday, July 31. Full entry details and terms and conditions are available on the Julia’s House website or by written request.

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