Short story success for Perse student
Alice Wentzell (Upper Sixth) demonstrated a wizardry with words in a national short story contest.
She was runner-up in the 12 to 18-year-old category of the Reader’s Digest 100-Word Story competition with her emotive work A Living Monument to Us and received a £100 book voucher for her efforts.
Having heard about the intriguing competition during creative writing enrichment sessions, Alice was inspired to have a go.
“I like writing short stories – I wrote one as part of my Rouse Award artefact project – and for this competition, I wanted to do something on the theme of time passing and make it evocative,” she said.
“There’s something about weeping willows that sparked my imagination. Sitting within the leaves becomes the main character’s safe place to go with someone else.
“To get it to 100 words while still having a storyline, I wrote a longer story of about 300 words and it really helped as I felt I knew my characters and the background and I could work on brutally cutting it down.
“It’s all implied meaning because you don’t have the time and space to describe things, you have to read between the lines.”
Alice, who plans to study English at university, was thrilled to discover she was runner-up, with her story one of three shortlisted by judges for an online vote by the general public.
She said: “I had no idea it was going to be on the Reader’s Digest website for people to vote for their favourite, but it’s great that so many liked it.”