Creative Writing Award Recipients Celebrated

Posted on 19th October 2023 by

Eight young wordsmiths from Cornwall have won a year’s worth of invaluable mentorship with established Cornish authors to nurture their talents and help them achieve their writing dreams thanks to the Young & Talented Cornwall Creative Writing Award.


The award, sponsored by Falmouth University and Seasalt Cornwall and supported by the Arts Council National Lottery Project Grants, was launched last year as the latest initiative of Young & Talented Cornwall, The Lord Lieutenant’s Fund. The group – consisting of future poets, journalists and scriptwriters – is the second cohort of young people to benefit from the Creative Writing Award.


As part of the mentoring opportunity, they will each be matched with a professional Cornish writer such as Patrick Gale, Craig Barr-Green and Rebecca Gregson, and given expert advice and guidance. Each recipient can also access a further cash award of up to £1,000 each to develop a particular project or to fund much-needed equipment. They will also benefit from a £150 book voucher.


Among the talented eight recipients are Ella Brooks-Richardson, a 16-year-old from St Austell who combines a passion for creative writing and politics and strives for a career in print journalism, and 17-year-old novelist Keira Money from Camborne. Penryn’s Alexander Scrase-Olver meanwhile, is using the award to hone his script and lyric writing skills and Devoran-based Anna West is expanding her portfolio of comedy writing. Tayfun Zaidi (21, Falmouth), Rebecca Pearce (22, Porthtowan), Hugh Stribley (23, Falmouth) and Enid Kirk (age 18, Perranuthnoe) complete the list of recipients.


They were presented with their awards by Lord Lieutenant Colonel Edward Bolitho OBE and Award Curator, Philip Marsden, at The Poly in Falmouth on Monday (16th October) as part of Falmouth Book Festival.


Colonel Bolitho said: “Cornwall has long inspired creativity and is a hotbed of talent – this really shone through in the quality of these entries, which were more than twice as many as last year.  I am delighted to be able to support some of our writers of the future and to see some of their early work. Thanks to our sponsors, over the next twelve months they will be mentored by some of Cornwall’s most distinguished authors. I can’t wait to see what they go on to do next.”


Author and award curator, Philip Marsden added: “With the increase in applications has come a much wider range of writing talent. I am thrilled to think of these eight young writers working with established authors to bring on their ideas and skills. And the awards continue – we will carry on seeking out others who might be tapping or scribbling away unsupported in rooms all over Cornwall.”


The latest award recipients join the inaugural cohort: Amber Brierley from Porthleven, Luke Marriott from Liskeard, Nikita Midgley from Saltash and Sophie Wainwright from the Isles of Scilly.


Reflecting on working with her mentor, Cornish writer, Wyl Menmuir, Sophie says: “My mentoring experience has helped me to develop better writing practices which encourage me to redraft, revise and improve my stories. There is a lot to learn about the process of writing and now I feel confident that I’m on the right track to becoming a successful storyteller.”


Anybody aged between 16 and 23 years with a flair for writing can apply for the Young & Talented Cornwall Creative Writing Award. For more information, head to or search @YTCornwall on Facebook, Instagram and X.