Maya’s writing skills a creative winner

SCHOOLGIRL Maya George has won a prize in the Guernsey Literary Festival writing competition.

Alderney Maya George and Louis de Bernieres

SCHOOLGIRL Maya George has won a prize in the Guernsey Literary Festival writing competition.

Blanchelande pupil Maya, 11, won first prize in the 11 and under category.

At an awards ceremony during the Literary Festival weekend, Maya received a trophy, a certificate and £50 cash.

She was delighted to be awarded her prize by Louis de Bernieres, author of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, who also signed her certificate.

‘That was amazing,’ said Maya. ‘I had heard of him before so it was really good to meet him.’

Maya wrote a 200-word story on the subject of The Picnic for The Write Stuff contest after seeing an advert in the Guernsey Press.

The competition was run through the Friday’s Footprint website, a site that encourages island children to write.

Flash fiction of this kind is now very popular, but is not easy. All short story writing is challenging, but to write a concise and intelligent tale with a beginning, middle and end in just 200 words is a real feat of creativity.

No doubt the competition was fierce, for as the festival showed, there is a wealth of creative talent of all ages in the islands.

Following the awards ceremony there was the chance to attend a workshop with poet David Charleston, where all the winning writers were able to pick up tips and strategies for successful poetry writing.

Maya plans to continue entering contests.

‘I’m working on a few stories at the moment. I sometimes write disasters, sometimes comedies – it depends on my mood. At school we are doing a lot of work on colour and imagery. I love to write descriptively, so everyone can see the pictures that I see.’

Maya’s mum and dad, Kirsten and Simon, are naturally very proud of their girl.

‘My parents have both been very supportive and very helpful,’ said Maya. ‘That makes it easier to go for these things.’