Cheltenham Poetry Festival - Poetry Pamphlet Competition

Cheltenham Poetry Festival are delighted to announce the launch of their Poetry Pamphlet Competition,
This is a fantastic (and rare) opportunity to get your work into print with the Prize of 50 copies of a 32-page pamphlet
plus a publishing contract for  the winner
Cheltenham Poetry Festival will also provide marketing support, including a headline poet event for the winning poet.
           Closing date: 15 January 2019.
Please click through to full details of how to enter:    Frosted Fire Firsts
Good luck everyone !

Competition time...

  • Graffitti Magazine 'Travel' Competitions - Short Story and Poetry


Deadline 31st January 2019. Please see their attachment for the competition rules.

 
  • Evesham Festival of Words Short Story Competition


Find competition rules and festival info here:

WWW.EveshamFestivalofWords

Review - GWN Winner's event by Sharon Webster

Gloucestershire writers’ network event at the Cheltenham Literature Festival

 

An increasing interest in everything writing, a discovery of the Gloucestershire Writers’ Network, and a toe dipped in the water of their competition, finds me in the audience at this event looking forward to hearing the successful

Conceived originally by the Literature Festival, Gloucestershire Writers’ Network was set up to encourage local authors and to inform and unite the various writing groups and this is the show piece of their competition. Although the festival does provide the opportunity of a bigger platform for the winners to air their talents, there is a certain home-grown feeling to the audience and I get the impression there are more than a few local supporters.

It is a warm atmosphere and there is an expectation of enjoyment as the winners and runners up read their prose and poetry pieces, all conforming in some way to the theme “East Meets West”. The breadth of the interpretations is wider, more unusual than I had anticipated, the readings unselfconscious and engaging. I particularly enjoy the prize winning prose piece, “ The Locals ” by Emma Kernahan because it rings true and makes me laugh, and “ Public school - Private Hell “ a poem by  Marilyn Timms,  for the strength of its delivery.  In fact the whole is summed up quite nicely by my neighbour’s comment,

“The standard is much higher than I expected.”

It is as I scan the anthology that I realise the authors have all had some success previously and are not quite the amateurs I thought they were.  **

In the second half we are treated to recitals from the judges themselves, Kim fleet reads extracts from her most recent crime novel “Holy Blood” and Anna Saunders a selection of her poetry, with particular focus on her latest book “Ghosting for Beginners”.

The 50: 50 mix  of poetry and prose makes  the evening varied and entertaining and I will put it on my wish list next year.

As I leave I have a conversation with a stranger about the Ghosts we have seen, it is a good way to end the day thanks to Anna!

 

** Admin Reminder
Please note that the competition is open to all, regardless of experience.  Over the years both experienced and new writers have been represented in the winning line-up.

 


Introducing our GWN Judges and winners 2018

Here are some photographs from our GWN event celebrating the finale of our 2018 Competition

Our congratulations to all winners and to every one who took part - we hope to see you all again next year :))

Photographs courtesy of Howard Timms and Olivia Howarth

Pictured from left to right:

Iris Anne Lewis (Prose runner up) Anna Saunders (Poetry judge) Lynda Fowke (Prose runner up) Emma Kernahan (Prose Winner) Derek Healy (Poetry runner up) Marilyn Timms (Poetry and prose runner up) David Hale (Poetry winner) Kim Fleet Prose judge)

 

 

David Hale - Poetry Winner

Emma Kernahan - Prose Winner

 

Judges Anna Saunders and Kim Fleet in the Waterstones tent

 


Review - GWN Winner's event by Sheila Johnson

The Gloucestershire Writers Network at the Cheltenham Literature Festival

‘East meets West’ was the theme of the 2018 Literature Festival which Gloucestershire writers were asked to interpret. The judges selected this year were short story writer and novelist, Kim Fleet, who judged the prose pieces and Anna Saunders, the CEO of the Cheltenham Poetry Festival and author of five poetry collections, who judged the poetry entries. There were two winners in each category and three runners-up in each. The event this year was a total sell-out as an excited audience consisting of the prize-winning participants, their family, friends and fellow writers gathered around tables in the Nook Marquee at 6.30pm on Sunday 7 October.

The prose winner, Emma Kernahan, from Stroud’s piece was entitled ‘The Locals’, an amusing story about a couple relocating from London to the rural west of England. Emma was thrilled to experience her first competition win with this.

David Hale’s winning poem, ‘Cranes Flying’ was about an archaeological dig unearthing a piece of porcelain, “think willow pattern” he instructed us as he began to read.

We then enjoyed three poems from the runners-up, Derek Healy with his poem, ‘Love’s Convergence, Catherine Baker’s poem ‘Waiting for the boat’ - which was read by her friend Maureen Drew in Catherine’s absence – and Marilyn Timms poem, ‘Public School – Private Hell’. Marilyn was a double runner-up, as she also was a runner-up in the prose section with her piece, ‘Bride Price’. Marilyn has been a runner up in the GWN competition four times but still manages to be surprised by her own talent.

“It’s fantastic to be a runner-up,” she said. “You’re hopeful but you never expect it. I’m just very lucky.”

The other two prose pieces were ‘The Shawl’ by Lynda Fowke and ‘Call me Shadi, Muna, Nasima…’ by Iris Anne Lewis, both dealing with the topical subject of displaced people and refugees.

We then had the pleasure of hearing readings from both the judges, Kim and Anna.

Kim read first from her novel, ‘Featherfoot’ set in the Australian outback and then from her novel, ‘Holy Blood’, set in contemporary and past Cheltenham and dealing with the illegal holy relics trade. Kim confessed to us that all her books have something to do with crime and bodies.

Anna’s poems all came from her latest poetry collection published this year, ‘Ghosting for Beginners’.

“The Gloucestershire Writers Network Competition event is a wonderful opportunity for writers in Gloucestershire,” said Penny Howarth, the joint administrator to the organisation along with Chris Hemingway. “We are very grateful to the Cheltenham Literature Festival for hosting us.”

The Gloucestershire Writers’ Network is a non-profit organisation which connects with writers and writing groups across Gloucestershire by providing them with a central platform. The competition follows the theme of the Cheltenham Literature Festival, which like the festival itself, is run annually and is open to all Gloucestershire writers over the age of sixteen.

 


Review - GWN Winner's event by Howard Timms

GWN honours Gloucestershire Writers at Cheltenham Literature Festival

For any writer it is an honour and privilege to read her or his own creation in the prestigious programme of Cheltenham Literature Festival. That opportunity is provided for a group of outstanding local writers through an annual event by the talented volunteers of Gloucestershire Writers’ Network.

For me, the 2018 event on 7 October provided an excellent and high quality evening’s event. I was proud spouse of one of the seven writers who earned a chance to read after success in a competition which attracted more than 160 entries. I admit a hint of envy, too, as an also-wrote who was honouring the high standard of writing by all the readers on stage.

Sunday’s event started with presentations of prizes to the winner and three runners up of each of two contests – one for short stories, and one for poetry. Then came the readings, extremely varied interpretations of the Literature Festival theme of East meets West.

First up was the winning poet, David Hale from Horsley. His Cranes Flying is an interesting and thoughtful physical discovery of far-eastern culture by a presumably western archaeologist.

The winning prose writer was Emma Kernahan from Stroud. Her story The Locals hilariously contrasts fantasy-driven emails of a woman’s former London commuting with her new, mundane west-country life.

Derek Healy from Lower Swell was first runner-up to read. His poem Love’s Convergence with skilful geographical imagery, shows lovers ‘paralleled two poles . . . apart’ finally embracing each other’s mind.

The Shawl a story by Lynda Fowke from Gloucester, imaginatively features a garment as a refugee. It makes a land and sea journey as a woman’s baggage, a man’s bandage, and finally clothes for toys.

From Tewkesbury, Catherine Baker wrote Waiting for the Boat a poem on old refugee women. ‘Like pinks they can nod’ typifies the imaginative, engaging imagery and music Catherine produces with simple words.

Call me Shadi, Muna, Nasima . . . is an intriguing story by Iris Anne Lewis from Kempsford. After using false names as armour, a young refugee woman finally reveals her real name to a therapist.

Marilyn Timms from Cheltenham was runner-up in both poetry and prose. Her poem Public School – Private Hell starts a train journey in school day dreams, and ends it building the Burma railway as a prisoner of war. With another good final surprise, the story Bride Price shows a Japanese businessman. A widower, he buys a new, western wife, then loses her as ransom for his teenage daughter.

Finally, the two competition judges read some of their own work. Award-winning novelist Dr. Kim Fleet, the judge for stories, read two engaging and suspenseful excerpts from her novels. Then poetry judge Anna Saunders, founder and CEO of Cheltenham Poetry Festival, read thought-provoking and contrasting poems from her latest book Ghosting for Beginners.

After 40 years of earning a reasonable living from writing and editing non-fiction, I admire and respect all of the above writers. The art of creative writing requires more hard work, determination, and talent than reportage or factual reference. I think all of us competitors, and the winners and runners up, owe a great debt of gratitude to the successful creative writers who also find the time and energy to organize GWN.

Howard Timms           9 October 2018

I am working on adding audio of all of the above readings to my blog: http://soundingoffaboutpoetry.com


Congratulations to John Holland

John Holland wins the To Hull And Back Short Story Competition
Stroud Short Stories organiser, John Holland, has won the 2018 £1,000 First Prize in the To Hull And Back Short Story Competition (for humorous stories) with his story 'Lips'. John, who also won the Dorset Fiction Award in July, will have the pleasure of journeying to Hull, having his mugshot on the front cover of the printed anthology and reading his story at the launch on 8 December.
Here is how the announcement was made ;)

Lo, verily and yay, here be the most splendid, original, pioneering and prodigious stories entered into the 2018 contest. These stories scored well consistently across a variety of reading tastes.

Congratulations to all the winners – you have each penned a fable of mirth and legend that will be revered for eternity in the To Hull And Back archive.

1st Prize

Lips, by John Holland

All info - https://www.christopherfielden.com/short-story-competition/results-2018.php#Winners


SSS - Submissions please !

Stroud Short Stories is Open for Your Submissions
 

Stroud Short Stories is now open for submissions for its 17th event - to be held on Sunday 11 November 2018. It closes at the end of Sunday 14 October. 


There is no theme this time, so any style, any subject, any genre or no genre. As long as it's a short work of fiction, of course!

As ever it's free to submit and SSS accepts both published and unpublished stories from Gloucestershire and South Gloucs writers. 


Ten authors will read their work to a capacity audience of 70 short story lovers at 8pm on Sunday 11 November at the SVA in John Street, Stroud, GL5 2HA. This event is part of the Stroud Book Festival.

If you want an idea of what kind of stories they like (and they do like lots of different styles) listen to the authors reading their work at previous SSS events here

SSS Organiser John Holland is judging with the author and publishing guru Debbie Young. Check out more info about the judges here

Stroud Short Stories guarantees that all stories are read by both judges.

All the info you need is on the Stroud Short Stories website - http://stroudshortstories.blogspot.com/
POSTER LINK : SSS_No17_Invite_A4 (1)

GWN Competition Results

Hello Writers
We have great pleasure in announcing the winners of the 2018 GWN Writers' Network Poetry and Prose Competition.
They are as follows:
FOR PROSE - Judged by Dr Kim Fleet
WINNER
Emma Kernahan, Stroud - 'The Locals'
RUNNERS-UP
Lynda Fowke, Gloucester - 'The Shawl'
Iris Anne Lewis, Kempsford - 'Call me Shada, Mura, Nasima'
Marilyn Timms, Cheltenham - 'Bride Price'
COMMENDED
Ali Bacon, Emersons Green - 'In Loco Parentis'
Joanna Campbell, Bisley - 'Zugswang, 1963'
Kathy O'Grady, Stroud - 'Freewheeling'
FOR POETRY - Judged by Anna Saunders
WINNER
David Hale, Horsley - 'Cranes Flying'
RUNNERS-UP
Catherine Baker, Tewkesbury - 'Waiting for the Boat'
Derek Healy, Lower Swell - 'Love's Convergence'
Marilyn Timms, Cheltenham - 'Public School - Private Hell'
COMMENDED
Frances March, Stroud - 'Dancing on the Equator'
Sam Pearce, Newent - 'Checkmate'
Johnny Porter, Cheltenham - 'The Taste of Bear'
We offer sincere congratulations to all who've been placed and to all who entered and made it such a great contest. We thank our wonderful judges, who've worked extremely hard.
  • You can hear our winners, runners-up and judges read at GWN's prizewinning event (L088) at The Times and The Sunday Times Literature Festival - 6.30pm - 7.45pm in The Nook on Sunday 7th October.
    Last year we sold out three weeks in advance, so make sure that you book ahead here:
  • https://www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/literature/whats-on/grid/
    You can read the winning entries and judges' comments in the 2018 Prizewinners' Anthology for sale at the event and online.
We thank our kind hosts and sponsors, The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, Liggy Webb, Cheltenham Arts Council and The Suffolk Anthology Bookshop.
You can continue to keep abreast of writing events across Gloucestershire or let us advertise them for you via our website: www.gwngloswriters.org.uk
and follow us on Twitter @GWNgloswriters and on Facebook at GlosWriters@groups.facebook.com
Well done all and Happy Writing!
GWN Team

Deadline for Buzzwords Open Poetry Competition

This is the last week to polish your entries and send them off to Buzzwords.

1st prize-£600.   Runner-up- £300.    5 x commended-£50 each.

Sole Judge:  Graham Burchell - who will read all entries

Closing date for entriesMidnight, 25th August 2018.

The Gloucestershire Prize- £200. (for Gloucestershire residents only).

Please see the Buzzwords Website HERE for more information and entry details

Good Luck to everyone