Our annual creative writing competition, ‘The Page is Printed’, has written its latest chapter, with a wonderful celebration evening held at the Tacchi-Morris on Sat 25 Feb. The competition tasked writers to create in any genre: prose, poetry, script, a confession, a love letter, a list… but contain their entry to just one side of A4. Entrants were invited to attend, along with their friends & family, and local literary lovers.
During the evening the judging panel, including local award-winning poet and lead judge Graeme Ryan, revealed the winners of the various categories of the competition. Over the past few weeks the judging panel have been steadily reading through the mountain of entries to this year’s competition, with the unenviable and seemingly impossible job of determining their winners. The results were as follows…
The Page is Printed 2023: Creative Writing Competition
Somerset Prize | Portrait by Jason Gibbs
Open Prize | The Playground by Julie Gaukroger
Best on the Night Adult | Little Bo Peep by GV Davies
U18s Prize Winner | In commemoration of our affinity by Umo Balde
U18s Prize Winner | Man made cover ups by Bethany Dixon
U18s Prize Winner | Silence by Melissa Coles
U18s Prize Winner | I am white owl by Elsie Ryder
U18s Prize Winner | My ‘truth’ by Joshua Dow
Best on the Night U18s | Gold Penguin by Evelyn Berridge
Highly Commended | Today Alice is looking for courage by Sanchia Pereira
Highly Commended | Sonder by Abi Shaw
Highly Commended | Where do names live? by Abi Shaw
Highly Commended | The Last Will and Testament of Miss Mycenae Thursday; Adventurer, Archaeologist, Grave Robber? by David Lee
Highly Commended | How to Make a Dad Quilt by Chris Cottom
Highly Commended | Empty Arms by Kathy Laity
Highly Commended | FATHER by Sinead Gillespie
Highly Commended | After the rain by Estelle Jackson
Highly Commended | 12 Minutes by Sarah Saxon
Highly Commended | Encounters of Acute Proximity by Imogen Mansfield
Highly Commended | There’s Peace Here by Matt Edwards
Highly Commended | The Mistake by Sharon Miles
There were many entries this year, all full of excellent creative ideas and wonderful words. The Celebration Evening was a lovely night showcasing the power of words and bringing together a community of writers in a supportive, positive environment. Graeme Ryan, the lead judge and prize-winning poet, praised the standard of entries and explained that The Page is Printed is all about providing opportunities and encouraging people to write and express themselves. Limiting entrants to one side of A4 and running it as a competition helps with motivating people, but the main purpose of the event is to encourage and celebrate creative writing. Therefore, anyone who enters makes it a success.
A special thank you must go to this year’s judging panel made up of lead judge and award-winning poet Graeme Ryan, author Clare Donoghue, Lionel Ward owner of Brendan Books (Taunton’s favourite independent bookshop), writer Molly White and English Educationalist Leanne Appleby. They generously gave their time to read the pieces and provide their feedback making this all possible.
Jason Gibb’s entry to The Page is Printed was titled Portrait and the judges all agreed that the writer used great skill to tell a powerful story in so few words; this economy is hard to achieve. The judges were also reminded of mythological tales in terms of the tragic inevitability of the narrative.
Julie Gaukroger’s entry The Playground received great praise from the panel for its authenticity. They enjoyed how the writer had really captured the voice and perspective of a child who is craving attention from a parent and its dark ending.
The Page is Printed Creative Writing competition aims to inspire creativity. The hope is that entrants continue to write, continue to enter competitions and continue to inspire others. We hope that all who entered had as much fun as we have for this year’s competition and that many will continue to enter the competition for year’s to come.
We will be exhibiting this year’s winning pieces in an exhibition in our gallery spaces from Mon 6 Mar to Mon 24 Apr.