Latest News | 2 February 2022

Book festival writing competition is out of this world

Derby Museums Trust
QUAD Derby
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The organisers behind the annual Derby Book Festival – which is backed by several Marketing Derby Bondholders – have launched a writing competition as part of the build-up towards this year’s event.

The seventh Derby Book Festival is set to be held from 20 to 28 May, with a host of events and activities being lined up.

Ahead of the festival, it has launched the 2022 Flash Fiction Writing Competition, which challenges children and adults to write a story in up to 50 words on the subject of ‘Space’.

The winning stories will be printed on a set of bookmarks and will be distributed across Derby and Derbyshire to promote the festival.

In previous years, writers have been invited to tackle a variety of themes. Including ‘Love’, ‘Secrets’, ‘Journeys’ and ‘Home’, attracting hundreds of entries each time.

Liz Fothergill, chair of Derby Book Festival, said: “Our annual Flash Fiction competition is always an extremely popular part of the festival each year and we are particularly delighted that so many schools engage in the competition.

“We are delighted that our key funder, the University of Derby, will be running a competition for their Illustration course students to illustrate the stories.

“We hope to receive a bumper crop of entries this year as the pandemic has encouraged more people to enjoy writing and reading as a leisure activity.”

The Flash Fiction competition has three age categories: 11 years and under, 12 to 17 years and 18 years and over.

Entries for all categories will be judged by a panel of local writers and creative writing specialists and there will be one winner in each category with a prize for each of a £50 book token.

Explaining why the subject of ‘Space’ had been chose for this year, Liz said: “We want to have as wide a range of original stories as possible and feel that ‘Space’ can be interpreted in so many ways: the galaxy and space exploration, the freedom that space gives us both mentally and physically, the awe of being in a huge space such as a cathedral or football stadium … or the fear of being confined in a small space.

“We look forward to reading all the inspiring stories that the competition always generates.”

The book festival is supported by Déda, Derby City Council, Derby LIVE, Derby Museum and Art Gallery, Derby Theatre, Landau Forte College, Marketing Derby, QUAD, the University of Derby and Waterstones.

Professor Keith McLay, provost for learning and teaching at the University of Derby, said: “The University of Derby’s core is providing opportunities for transformational education and that is why we are delighted to be a principal partner of the Derby Book Festival and, in particular, to be involved in promoting the reading and writing opportunity of the Flash Fiction competition.”

The closing date for the competition is 10pm on Monday 21 February.

For more information about the competition and some tips on how to get started please click here.

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