In a battle of the acronyms, MYOSB and TWA have defied covid-19 and are both hale and hearty, up and running and ready to support our young writers and illustrators. Their 2020 programs are delayed, but not defeated, and talented West Australians of school age have the chance to get their creative juices flowing again and enter both the Make Your Own Story Book competition and the Tim Winton Awards for young writers.
And bring out the cheer squad for all those dedicated professionals who will once again, in spite of exceptionally difficult circumstances, run these two important competitions. Make Your Own Story Book entries involve both writers and illustrators. Illustrations for your book can be made by painting, drawing, collage and even photographs, as long as they are taken by the author or illustrator of course. Books must be complete with sturdy cover, blurb and author biog. Over the years that this competition has been running the judges have been amazed by the skills, the innovation and diversity these young people have shown in producing unique handmade books – works of art in their own right. The Tim Winton Awards are perhaps better known, but in that case only the quality of the writing is judged. Of course the presentation of the short story entries also has to be of good quality. Surface features such as spelling, punctuation, grammar and neatness need to be of a standard that makes them easy to read and does not distract too much from the impact of the ideas.
So get out those pens, pencils, paint brushes and computers kids. There are prizes to be won and perhaps careers to be had. Shaun Tan famously won the MYOSB Award when he was 11 years old. And if you are a prize winner you will get to meet another world famous WA author; Tim Winton who is the patron of the Awards that bear his name. He presents the prizes to all of the successful entrants each year.
And, hot off the press, congratulations to Shaun Tan! He has just won the Kate Greenaway Medal for his picture book, Tales from the Inner City. This is one of the most prestigious children’s book awards in the world! You do us proud, Shaun!