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Put your story in writing

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By Meg Kennedy

Are you a primary or high school student itching to share your story with the world?
Entries for the 2019 Moorabool Young Writers’ Awards will open later this month.
The awards, now in their second-year of running, aim to promote a love of reading and writing, as well as recognising the finest young writers in the district.
Jem Tyley-Miller of Moorabool Writers Craft says that following the success of last year’s awards, Moorabool Shire Libraries and Moorabool Writers Craft group will continue “strengthening our relationships with the local schools, which means more young winters entering and getting their stories out into the world.”
“This year we will be giving schools the opportunity to host a writer’s workshop with judge, Allyse Near, who will offer practical insights into what makes a story ‘sing’,” says Ms Tyley-Miller.
“It is our aim to have this workshop travel to different schools each year, starting this month at Bacchus Marsh PS.”
Author and Bacchus Marsh local Allyse Near’s debut novel, the young adult gothic fantasy Fairytales for Wilde Girls, was the winner Best Horror and Best Young Adult Novel at the Aurealis Awards, and Honour Book of the Year at the CBCA Awards.
As for the importance of the award, Ms Tyley-Miller says that “stories are often how we make sense of our world…by providing this opportunity for young people we are giving space for these unique voices to develop, as well as promoting a love of storytelling and by extension, reading.”
Stories will be judged in three categories and are open to all those who meet the age requirements, and who work, live, or study in Moorabool Shire.
Both a winner and a runner-up will be awarded for each category.
For advice on what makes a great story, Ms Tyley-Miller says, “great stories take time.”
“Edit, edit and edit again. Put your story away for a week and then see what else it needs. Last year’s winners definitely went that extra mile,” she says.
“Who knows, we may unearth the next Peter Carey, Frank Hardy or Wayne Marshall.”
The Moorabool Young Writers Award will be open from March 18th to April 21st, 2019.
Submissions will be accepted via email at info@moorabool.vic.gov.au or hand delivery to the Lerderderg Library in Bacchus Marsh or Ballan Library.
Entries must be typed and will be judged blind, so no names on work, but entry forms must be attached
Each child may enter one story and entry is free.
Winners will be announced on June 1st at an afternoon tea, held in conjunction with the Peter Carey Short Story Award.
All winning stories will be displayed in the Lerderderg Library in Bacchus Marsh.