Are you a budding young writer aged 5 to 25-or do you know someone who is? If so, the Wicked Young Writer Awards may be just the competition you were waiting for! Read on to find out much more on the 2019 competition...
What are the Wicked Young Writer Awards?
Now in its ninth year, the Wicked Young Writer Awards raise awareness and funds for the National Literacy Trust, a charity dedicated to giving children and young people the literacy skills to succeed in life. A creation of the musical WICKED in collaboration with NLT and celebrated author Sir Michael Morpurgo, the competition accepts creative writing entries from young people in five categories: 5 to 7, 8 to 10, 11 to 14, 15 to 17 and 18 to 25. In addition, the 2019 Awards see the fourth year of the FOR GOOD Award for Non-Fiction, encouraging 15-25 year olds to write essays or articles that recognise the positive impact that people can have on each other, their communities and the world we live in.
What prizes can you win?
Entrants have until 18 March 2019 to submit their pieces of original writing-individually or as part of a school group. The overall winners from each category will win a VIP family experience to the West End production of WICKED, including an exclusive backstage tour and cast meet-and-greet, £50 book/eBook tokens, plus £100 worth of books for their school library donated by Hachette Children's Books. The individual school with the highest number of entries will receive a bespoke writing workshop for their school.
Stories and poems from 120 finalists from across the UK will be published in the annual WICKED Young Writer Awards Anthology. The finalists are also invited to an exclusive ceremony at London's Apollo Victoria, home to the hit musical since 2006, where judges and members of the WICKED cast will read the winning stories and poems and announce who has won in each category.
Imogen Usherwood, winner of the 18-25 category in 2018, commented: "Winning the Wicked Young Writer Awards was such an incredible experience. Hearing my story read aloud onstage was truly surreal but so exciting. The whole process has opened up so many new opportunities for me, and I've actually had work published in a magazine since then! I would encourage anybody interested in writing to give it a go."
Michael McCabe, UK Executive Producer of WICKED, said: "We remain hugely indebted to Sir Michael Morpurgo whose passion for literacy and creative writing motivated us all to create these Awards in 2010. We are also grateful to all of the judges and supporters whose invaluable contributions have enabled us to continue championing the extraordinary and important work of the National Literacy Trust. We take great pride in being able to encourage young people to channel their imaginations into the creation of original stories and poetry. Every year their story-telling inspires us all."