2017 Penfro Festival First Chapter Competition

The final results

The results of the Penfro First Chapter Competition for 2017 are as follows –

First, Jack Burns with Misconception
Second, Julie Holden with The Tenant
Third, Joan Ellis with Guilt

There were another eight entrants who are being highly commended.

Eve Chancellor with Star Crossed
Katy Green with The Pig Baby
Mary Woodward with The Black and Tan
Maddy Allen with Whiskey Lullaby
Andrew Dawson with The Last British Outpost
Kathryn Batchelor with Pineapple Pit
Jo Carlowe with Unearthed
Jayne Griffiths Scott with Counting Magpies

All eleven of the above will be offered assistance in developing their manuscripts during the coming autumn and winter months,with guidance from competition judge, David Llewelyn.

Last year’s joint winners, Catriona Shine and Catherine Conlon have now signed up with literary agents, as the first step towards getting their novels published.

A message from the judge:

This year we exceeded last year’s total entries and topped three figures, with 101 entries. As I write I am unsure of the entries origins. Last year there were entries from Norway, Ireland, Thailand and, of course, England and Wales.

This year’s entries, once again, proved to be of a very high standard. As it was a First Chapter competition, entries varied from as little as four pages up to twelve pages. This obviously makes it vitally important that the opening pages make an immediate impression of some kind, whether in terms of characterisation, setting, dialogue , narrative or a significant new voice. I did not have any sight of synopses, so was not able to foresee where a particular narrative was heading.

My assessments of the pages presented to me, therefore, represent a very personal response to quite a limited number of pages. Potential to reach a publishable standard was what I was looking for, potential that I felt I could help authors maximize within a limited time space, and with limited personal contact between myself and the shortlisted authors.

The task was to create a shortlist of 10 but I have actually come up with a list of 11. In no specific order, the 11 shortlisted entries were:

Star Crossed
The Tenant
The Pig Baby
The Black and Tan
Whisky Lullaby
The Last British Outpost
The Pineapple Pit
Counting Magpies

David Llewelyn August 2017