Three Wicklow pupils in final of national writing competition

Three Wicklow pupils – two from the same school – have beaten off just under 10,000 other entrants to make it through to the final of the 2014 John West Fantasy Writing Competition.

Orla O’Callaghan, fifth class, St Patrick’s Loreto, Bray, Kayleigh Clare Malone, a first year student at Colaiste Chill Mhantain, Wicklow Town and Safiq Murray, a second year pupil at the same school are all through to the final 21.

Orla O’Callaghan
Orla O’Callaghan

For this year’s competition, students nationwide were asked to write a short story in the fantasy and science fiction genre with the theme, “A Wild Adventure.”

The final will be held on Wednesday 14th May at The Mansion House, Dublin and the overall winner will receive a tablet PC and a meeting with an Irish literary agent, while each of the three category winners will get an iPod Touch.


Orla is shortlisted in the Primary category. Her story, “First Prize in the Raffle” tells of a girl’s adventure when she wins sketching pencils in the school raffle.  The vampire that she draws suddenly comes to life, jumps off the page and takes her back into the picture with him!  Orla’s teacher is Mrs. Boland.


Kayleigh Clare Malone
Kayleigh Clare Malone

Kayleigh is shortlisted in the Junior Secondary category.  “The Journey” tells the story of a nine month old lion cub who gets separated from the pride when it’s attacked by humans.   Parched, miserable and afraid, she searches for her family and for food and water in the unbearable African heat.  But just when she thinks things have improved, she faces another challenge.  Kayleigh’s teacher is Stephen Doherty.


Safiq Murray
Safiq Murray

Safiq is also shortlisted in the Junior Secondary category.  “The Story of How Gaston Lost his Spaceship in a Human’s School Cupboard” is set during a careers’ day at school, a day Sophia hates as her mum works in a café and who would want to hear her story?  Her dad left when she was a baby.  Sophia meets a teenage boy who transports her to a planet called Betelguese via a spaceship parked in the school cupboard.  There she makes amazing discoveries about her own powers and about her father. Safiq’s teacher is also Stephen Doherty.


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