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Ministry of Education.

Elsie Locke Writing Prize 2011

The Elsie Locke Writing Prize is a great opportunity for young writers to develop an original piece of writing for publication. The competition commemorates Elsie Locke’s life as a New Zealand writer and as a campaigner for peace, the environment, and women’s issues.

Open to students in years 7 and 8, this year’s challenge is to write about a journey, real or imagined. The journey could be a physical one that involves travel or a journey of self-discovery – or a combination of the two. It could be set in the past, present, or future.

For examples of stories about journeys in the School Journal, see “White Shoes” by Melanie Drewery (Pt 4 No. 2, 2010), “Eyewitness” by Sarah Penwarden” (Pt 4 No. 1, 2010), and “Saying Goodbye” by Philippa Werry (Pt 3 No. 3, 2006).

Entries will be judged on the quality of writing. The judges look for the following:

  • The ability to engage the reader and convey meaning
  • A sense of time and place
  • The ability to organise and develop an idea
  • Clarity and coherence in the writing
  • A flair with language (in particular, the effective use of figurative language).

The winning entry will be published in a Part 4 School Journal and the writer will receive a prize of $500. To read the winning stories from 2009 and 2010, check out “War Games” (PDF 660KB), “The Half-crown” (Pt 4 No. 3, 2010).

Competition rules

  • The competition is open to all New Zealand students in years 7 and 8.
  • Entries should be about 500–600 words (maximum). They may be handwritten.
  • All work must be the writer’s own.
  • Entries close Monday 20 June 2011.

Send all entries to:

Susan Paris

School Journal Editor

Learning Media

PO Box 3293

Wellington 6140

Elsie Locke, born in 1912, was the author of many books for children. She wrote more than 30 stories for the School Journal. Find out more about Elsie Locke’s life in the School Journal Pt 4 No. 1, 2009.

Published on: 04 May 2011


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