Chichester girl in short story final

Finalist Lily Barkes from Chichester
Finalist Lily Barkes from Chichester

A CHICHESTER girl with a passion for writing has been named as a finalist in a national short story competition.

Ten-year-old Lily Barkes has been shortlisted in the KalliKids competition, having been selected from more than 500 entries across the country.

Judges selected ten stories from each of four age categories, for school years three to six.

Lily said: “I am so excited to be a finalist. I love writing stories and using my imagination.

“This one was something that I originally wrote a couple of years ago and forgot about. I found it in an old notebook around the time we read about the Kallikids competition and I thought the idea fitted really well with the theme. I completely rewrote it and sent it off, but I didn’t dare hope that I would be picked as a finalist.

“I am over the moon! I am always making up stories and always have one buzzing away in my head. Writing stories is my passion.”

Four pupils from Westbourne House School in Chichester have been named as finalists. They are Juliette Binning and Alice Welch from year five, and Monty Marley and Phoebe Wheeler from year six.

Each story had to be around 500 words long. Winners will be chosen by best-selling author Jo Rees and announced in early September.

The top stories will be published in both hardcopy and e-book, and the four schools with the most entries will win a creative writing session with Jo, who wrote Platinum and Come Together.

She said: “I loved writing stories as a child. Getting encouragement and feedback set me on my path to become a writer.

“Until you set pen to paper, you don’t know where your imagination can take you. That is why I am so delighted to be judging the competition.”

KalliKids is a Brighton-based company dedicated to providing parents with a place to find recommended, trusted and approved family activities.

Karen Bach, competition spokesman, said: “We were so impressed with the quality of stories we received. Evelyn’s story was amazing. The theme of the competition was shine and she certainly did this.”

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