Can you write about ‘Spring’ in a 50-word festival competition?

Hi everyone! I wanted to share with you this great opportunity that all students can get involved with. The Derby Book Festival are looking for inspiring entries for their Flash Fiction Writing Competition - could you be the winner? Check out the press release below for more details on how to get involved!

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The Derby Book Festival logo - it features a blue ribbon bookmark and text reading 'Derby Book Festi

Hi everyone! I wanted to share with you this great opportunity that all students can get involved with. The Derby Book Festival are looking for inspiring entries for their Flash Fiction Writing Competition - could you be the winner? Check out the press release below for more details on how to get involved!

Can you write about ‘Spring’ in a 50-word Festival competition?

Derby Book Festival is challenging children and adults to write a story or poem in up to fifty words on the subject of ‘Spring for its 2024 Flash Fiction Writing Competition launched today (29 January). 

The winning stories will be printed on a set of bookmarks and will be distributed across Derby and Derbyshire to promote Derby Book Festival. In previous years, people have been invited to tackle a variety of themes: ‘Love’, ‘Secrets’, ‘Journeys’, ‘Space’, ‘Our World’, ‘Home’ and ‘Light’, attracting hundreds of entries each year.  The theme can be interpreted as widely as the author wishes, so long as the story or poem is no longer than fifty words. 

Derby Book Festival will have three programmes of book-related events in 2024, with the first, its Spring Collection, being held from 29 February to 4 March, with the Summer Festival from 30 May – 4 June and the Autumn Edition from 15 – 18 November.

Derby Book Festival Chair, Liz Fothergill CBE explained why the theme of ‘Spring’ has been chosen: “We want to have as wide a range of original stories as possible.  ‘Spring’ can be interpreted in so many ways: For example, you could focus on the season of Spring and the new life that it brings; a spring mechanism which opens to reveal unknown contents; the motion of a spring when you jump up and down - even, the way you spring into life each morning! We look forward to reading all the inspiring stories that the competition always generates!”

The Flash Fiction competition has three age categories: 11 years and under, 12 – 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 of a £50 book token. There are also separate categories for HMP Foston Hall and HMP Sudbury. 

Liz Fothergill, Chair of Derby Book Festival explained: “Our annual Flash Fiction competition is always an extremely popular part of the Festival and it encourages people of all ages to be creative and use their imaginations to write a story or poem.”

The Festival’s key funder, the University of Derby, will be running a competition for its illustration students to illustrate the winning entries, which will then be reproduced as Festival bookmarks. 

Professor Keith McLay, Provost - Learning & Teaching at the University of Derby, said: “The joy of this annual Flash Fiction competition is the multiple interpretations offered by the theme. This competition celebrates creativity, diversity of thought and critical opinion – just like a university. This is why we are delighted to be a principal partner of the Derby Book Festival and, in particular, to be involved in promoting the Flash Fiction competition.”

The Festival website has some helpful links to those who are interested in writing Flash Fiction but are not sure where to start. 

The set of bookmarks will be printed for the Summer Festival and will be distributed widely across schools, bookshops, local libraries, venues, cafes and arts centres. 

To enter the competition, visit the Festival website and submit your story using the online form: https://www.derbybookfestival.co.uk/flash-fiction
The closing date for the competition is 9pm on Monday 19 February. The terms and conditions for the competition can also be found on the website, where you can sign up for more information about the Festival. 

You can also follow the Festival on Twitter at: @DerbyBookFest and ‘like’ the Festival on Facebook: www.facebook.com/derbybookfestival

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