There’s just a week left to go before a Berwickshire youngster finds out if she has won one of the prizes up for grabs in a national writing competition.
Rachel Laird from Eyemouth has beaten off some strong competition to make the shortlist of the Wicked Young Writers Award in the 14-16 years category.
One hundred shortlisted stories and poems were selected from thousands of entries from across the UK for the second year of the award, which recognises and rewards excellence in writing talent of young people between five and 25 from all backgrounds and areas of the country.
A total of 20 finalists in each of the five different age-categories were chosen and one overall winner from each will be chosen to receive family tickets to see the award-winning musical ‘Wicked’ plus a writing workshop for the individual winner at their own school.
The two schools that encouraged the most entries will win an array of books for their respective school libraries.
Winners will be announced at a special showcase at London’s Apollo Theatre, home to ‘Wicked’, on Thursday, December 8 and even if she doesn’t win her category, Rachel, along with all the other shortlisted entrants, will be featured in a special anthology.
The judges for the 2011 Award, championed by HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, are William Fiennes, award-winning author and founder of First Story; former Children’s Laureate and best-selling author Michael Morpurgo, and ‘Wicked’’s executive producer, Michael McCabe.