247 Tales: the first winner

Over at 247 Tales the challenge is on… It’s a Bloomsbury competition for children, and right now, the first winning story, When I Grow Up (246 words) by Tomas, age 8, is up on the website for all to admire and read.

Each month, a different Bloomsbury author will pen 247 words on the theme de month. Their stories also feature on the site and 10 runners-up each receive a signed copy of the latest book by that author.

I think it’s a marvellous idea. And I’ll bet that squeezing an idea in 247 little words is a lot harder than you’d think. I’m wondering if this month’s author Julia Green found it difficult? I’m going to try to find out …

In the meantime, Bloomsbury have been overjoyed with the response they received for March. Susannah Nuckey, Bloomsbury’s Children’s Marketing Executive, said that the enthusiastic response from budding authors is “incredibly exciting” and that Tomas’ story was chosen because it was “full of imagination from start to finish”.

The theme for April is ‘April Fool’ and Bloomsbury are still welcoming entries. So if you know a young author, here’s their chance to get ahead. Just think, one day, in a galaxy far far away, maybe at their acceptance speech at the Nibbies, or (let’s get carried away) the Man Booker Prize, or even when penning the foreword for the 2030 edition of the Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook, they could quote it as how their career got started …

Warm wishes, Jo

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “247 Tales: the first winner

  1. Yes! Writing a very short story IS more difficult than it looks! (have a go, to find out…) I think that the shortest forms, like a poem or a picture book text or a short short story are the hardest. It’s hard to get a ‘shape’ (the story arc) with so few words, or any real sense of characters or emotional development, which are the things which interest me as a writer.

    I was set the topic of ‘April Fool’, and that seemed to suggest a funny story, but I’m not really a ‘comic’ writer! Also, I wanted to write something connected with my new novel, Breathing Underwater, so in the end I chose to capture one moment, when Freya is remembering the same day a year ago, when her brother Jo was still alive.

  2. Ed

    Julia’s and Tomas’s stories each showed what can be done with such a seemingly restrictive remit. They both captured the imagination and conveyed far more than the word count might ever suggest. Good writing has no bounds indeed…