The Bird’s Nest Books Short Story Competition
Our inaugural competition was in 2016 and we were delighted to receive so many entries; thank you all for taking the time to craft your stories and send them in.
The theme was ‘Birds’ and stories needed to be no longer than 1500 words in length. It was open to adults (aged 16 and over) living in or near Fenland. Entries were anonymised before being read. A shortlist of six was sent to the judges, writers Sue Welfare and Jon Lawrence. The results were as follows:
Shortlisted were Izabella by Emma Sutton, Breakdowns and Blue Tits by Jan Kaneen and The Birdwatcher’s Secret by Adam Sutton.
In third place was Song of the Blackbird by Rosemary Westwell. The judges said Rosemary’s story was ‘vividly written with a great sense of place and a nice rhythm and pace to it.’
In second place was Seasons Past by D S Benjamin, which the judges thought was a ‘mature, poignant and beautifully written exploration … Beautifully paced and observed.’
And in first place was The Last Moa by Gemma Wells. The judges both picked Gemma’s story as a clear winner, commenting that it was ‘beautifully composed and written…We get a fabulous sense of place and the two voices are rich and distinctive. I love the casual and appropriate use of the Latin and indigenous names – not talking down to us as readers, nor explaining, but giving us context which allows us to understand, while also giving as a vivid glimpse into the world the writer has created. Fabulous!’
You can read Gemma’s story here, complete with an illustration by Gemma herself.
Congratulations to everyone who took part. Thank you to our judges, Sue and Jon, and to our 2016 supporter DMJ Imagery who donated the first prize.