Wednesday 10 September 2014

Facing the Dragons

Last night I received a call from Rosie Canning.

'You've won,' she said. For a moment or two I wondered what on earth she meant. 'The Dragons.'

In May, The Finchley Literary Festival held a Dragon's Pen event where 14 writers each had 5 minutes in which to pitch a novel or short stories to three formidable dragons. In reality, Gillian Stern, Cari Rosen and Mary Musker were all very supportive of our writing with great immediate feedback, minus any fire breathing. One writer would be selected for some mentoring.

I am thrilled to be chosen as the writer who will now be able to receive some mentoring and have replicated Gillian's very kind words in her email.

We three Dragons are delighted to let you know that Lindsay Bamfield has won this year's Finchley Literary Festival's Dragon's Pen for her novel-in-progress Do Not Exceed Fifty.

Lindsay writes extremely well. Her narrative voice is engaging and convincing and we were impressed with the flow of the story, the immediacy of the voice, the structure of the narrative and the tone of her dialogue. Her internal and external observation is excellent and we found ourselves drawn in to Xanthe's life, eager to know if her quest to 'find a man' works out. There is an effortless tone to her writing - a fiendishly difficult skill to pull off.

Lindsay will now have the opportunity to be mentored by Gillian Stern, an editor and writer for Bloomsbury, Orion and Penguin.

In addition, we are also awarding a runner-up spot to Anne Oatley, for her novel-in-progress Blue Devil. We were excited by the strength and originality of her writing, which is taut, intriguing and surprising. Anne will also be given the opportunity to be mentored by Gillian.

We loved being Dragons and over the next couple of days, will be sending some feedback to all the writers who entered. Thank you for having us and we hope to be back next year. 

Gillian, Cari and Mary

I'm really looking forward to the next step, which will be quite a new experience for me, although of course, Greenacre Writers members have critiqued my work in the past which I found very beneficial - as well as sometimes challenging. Their input certainly helped me be able to present something worthy of the Dragons.  
Congratulations to runner up Anne Oatley. We are both very fortunate to be selected as I know we were up against some pretty formidable opposition.
Signing off so I can go and practise jumping so I won't be exaggerating when I say I'm over the moon.


Annika Bamfield-Gee said...

So happy and excited for you (and me if our '10% of any profits comes to me' agreement still stands haha!). It's an excellent book and deserves publishing...let's see!

Dan Purdue said...

Congratulations, Lindsay! What a result and what encouraging comments from the judge. Well done.

Wendy's Writing said...

Wow! Fabulous, Lindsay - make the most of your mentoring.

Joanna said...

What a fantastic achievement, Lindsay, and those are fantastic comments from the judges. Huge congratulations! xxx

Lesley said...

Well done you. Can't wait to read your book xx

SAL PAGE said...

Brilliant news, Lindsay! Well done and good luck! Sal x

Emily Benet said...

I didn't say congratulations enough before! This is so exciting. I remember hearing a section of your book at one of the greenacre litfests and loving it. Such brilliant news and so well-deserved. Never stop!

Lindsay said...

Thank you all for the lovely encouraging and generous comments. I'm really looking forward to the mentoring but also a bit nervous!

Unknown said...

Hi, Lindsay!
Thanks for your comment on Machu Picchu. Sorry your camera died... I know how frustrating that is because it happened to me when I was visiting Mexico City. Hope your knee is better now.

Patsy said...

That's fantastic news. Congratulations!