Congratulations to Joanna Campbell, winner of the first prize in The Yellow Room Autumn Competition. I love Joanna's writing. She explores emotions so well and her use of language is sublime. Joanna really gets into her characters' heads and creates a believable, realistic, yet fascinating world.
Second prize went to Allie Rogers for her wicked fantasy story, Like A Great Black Chess Piece. This was probably the most unusual of all the entries and intrigued me from the first line. I love Allie's use of humour.
Third prize was awarded to Poppy Peacock for her story, Frontline, which focused on the 1984 Miners' Strike. Political, hard hitting and wonderfully atmospheric. I felt as though I was there on the picket line with the central character, a teenage girl who has chosen to depict the conflict for her school art project.
On a more prosaic note, I am currently experiencing problems updating The Yellow Room Magazine website. Apologies to those who have been inconvenienced by this. It is incredibly frustrating for me, as I don't have the technical knowledge to sort it out quickly and efficiently! It's all down to ftp server problems. I may have to change my web hosting service.
For most of today I've been looking out upon a magical winter wonderland scene with temperatures of -7 degrees. I haven't done any work on the novel for over a week (apart from some research into Bloody Sunday), because I've been caught up in Christmas preparations and Yellow Room admin. However, one of the most pleasant jobs of the last few days has been choosing the top three stories in this autumn's competition.
And next year, please can someone remind me to buy advent calendars for the children on 1st November, before they sell out of the ones they really want?
Over to you
5 days ago