Pilgrim Artists Festival - 2022 Youth Literary Finalists

For our 2022 Pilgrim Artists Festival, we've invited literary submissions of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry in three age brackets: adult (18+), teen (13-17), and child (12 and under).

We encourage you to come vote at the Pilgrim Artists Festival for your favourite pieces. Voting at the festival this year runs from 10am to 4pm, 4-7 November, at the Huon Hub, 25 Main St, Huonville.

Below you'll find the finalists and runners up in the teen and child age brackets. You can read the adult entries here.

Writers for this year's festival had a maximum of 500 words to explore our 2022 festival prompt: Justice and Mercy. They were encouraged to reflect - from a Christian perspective - on either or both aspects of the prompt. Then, all entries were judged anonymously by an independent team of literary curators. That is, the curators had no idea whose work they were evaluating. These curators chose three finalists from a competitive field in each category at each age level, for you, the public, to vote on in person at the festival.

Teens (13-17) are eligible for the $50 Pilgrim Artists Prize and children (12 and under) are eligible for a $20 Suzannah Rowntree Prize in each category.

Fiction

Child (12 and under) Finalists

Help

By Liliana Baehr

I saw my family in the distance. I remembered the pain and sadness. I remembered that I can’t go back to them.

I heard Nala’s voice and I felt someone shaking me. “Wake up! What’s this nightmare? You don’t want to be late!”

I opened my eyes in a burst of sunlight. I abruptly sat up. Nala said, “He’s coming.”

Nala hurried away, out of the tent. I leapt up from my mat. The doorway of the tent brushed open and in stepped the Boss. He stared at me for one second, then said, “You are going to be sold, little muck. They will teach you how to behave.”

I clutched my hands together, “I’ll be good! Please don’t sell me! I’ll take care of the kids! Please!”

I felt like I was about to cry, but I held my tears back.

He frowned, and I was worried he was going to pull out his knife. “No, you are naughty. I don’t want you here. I can’t believe you asked someone for help. I should never have brought you here in the first place. At least you’ll be gone if anyone comes looking for you.”

“Please, sir, please, can my brother come with me?”

“Don’t call me sir, call me Boss. I beat you a lot but your new master will beat you more. And your little brother will be taught properly without you here.”

He twirled around and walked away, stomping. Nala slipped back in. Now I couldn’t hold my tears back. They dropped on my face. Nala looked at me. I ran out.

I hurried to where I knew the little kids were kept. I looked around and I couldn’t see my brother. I screamed his name.

My brother ran to my side. I hugged him tight. I heard someone say, “There’s that kid!”

I saw a whole bunch of people walking towards me. I saw the big strong man I met at the market who I had asked for help, and I saw many men holding guns and a few women.

For one second, I froze. They were walking towards me. And then I said, “Please. Help us.”

One of the men with guns and a large scar on his face smiled, “You will be well. Are there any others?”

“Yes, there are many.” I started crying again, but for happiness.

Sisters

By Margaret Baehr

Ava smiled. Today was a good day. Her sister Helma was taking her to the market, and she loved the market. She did a happy hop-skip and grabbed her sister’s hand, then she looked up into her dark brown eyes and whispered, “I love you.”

“I love you back,” Helma smiled as she said those words. That would be one of her last smiles for a very long time. Then she turned to Ava and said in a low voice, “I am going soon and I while be away for a long time.” She paused and took a deep breath. “I did something that i was not allowed to do, so i want you to run home if some bad men start taking me away, okay?”

Ava looked up at Helma and said, “Why are you leaving? Please stay with me please, you can’t leave, you can’t! I won’t let you!”

Ava clung to her sister and started to sob. “You can’t leave, I won’t let you!”

Helma patted her sister’s head and said in a tight strained voice, “It’s all right, little bird, I’ll come back, I promise.” Ava started to sob louder. “You can’t promise, Jahanna promised and she got taken away by bad men and never came back!”

Helma stiffened than she said in a quivering voice, “Jahanna was very brave and I am going to try and be brave too, so I need you to be brave with me.”

Ava turned her tear-streaked face towards Helma and said, “Okay, I will try and be brave for you and for Jahanna. But what did you do, please tell me?”

Helma got down on her knees and put her hand on Ava’s shoulder, “I have not been wearing my hijab, and the bad men don’t like that.”

Ava frowned, “But you are wearing it now so they can’t take you.”

Helma looked her sister in the eyes and said in a low voice, “That’s not how it works, little bird.” And with that she threw off her hijab and smiled at her sister. “There, that’s better.”

Ava gasped and stared at her sister. Her beautiful dark black hair fell to her waist in thick layers. Helma grinned and hugged her sister.

“I love you. I want you to remember that, my little bird.”
Then she took Ava’s hand again and led her towards the busy market stalls.

The Little Arctic Fox

By Peter Durdin

Once upon a time a little arctic fox called Michael was having fun in an ice cave, a little way from his home. He ran around in circles for quite a while, when a blizzard picked up, and he got scared. The blizzard was so strong that Michael had to walk deep into the ice cave to shelter from it. When the blizzard died away Michael was so deep that he couldn't find the exit.

He wandered around for hours, until he found an exit, but it was not the exit he had been playing by earlier.

He wandered out. When he was outside, he saw strange black and white creatures, sliding around on their tummies.

Michael was lost. He started crying into his paws. A snow leopard walked up to him.
"Are you lost?" asked the snow leopard.
Michael nodded.

"Do you want me to help you find your parents?" the snow leopard asked. Michael nodded again.

Together they searched for Michael's parents, while the snow leopard told Michael funny jokes about why penguins were flightless birds, like, "why are penguins flightless?" "Because if they could fly, they would conquer the universe!".

When they found Michael's parents, he had a gigantic hug and said thanks to the snow leopard.

THE END

Child (12 and under) Runners Up (Fiction)

Kebe Goes to the Market

By Elisabeth Baehr

Once in a little village a brown orphan girl name Kebe was going to the market to get some bread. But Kebe couldn't because she had no money. 

Kebe was walking in the street when she saw a coin on the ground and took it. She said, 'it must have dropped out of someone's pocket.' Just then she saw someone from the orphanage. 'Oh no, I can't go to the market cause the orphanage will try to get me.' 

Then she said, 'I'll try to sneak past them.' 

Kebe hid behind crates of apples. The bread stall was right near the apples. She looked in her hand to see if the coin was still there.  'Oh no, it's not there anymore.' 

So she thought about stealing the bread, but she knew that was not right. God said you were not supposed to steal bread. Kebe was going to leave the market, but then the person at the bread stall saw her and said, 'you can have some bread.'

Sunrise's Roar

By Heidi Koens

“Race you to the Great Acacia!” Sunrise yelled to her sister, Drizzle. She ran across the savanna, her paws a golden blur. When she finally reached the large tree, she roared louder than thunder, the wind whipping her fur. “This is what being lion is all about,” she said to herself.

Looking over, Sunrise saw Drizzle, a few steps away, panting. 

“Good job!”

The two lionesses made their way to the west rock, a home to the lion pride.

“There you are! Samson wants to speak with you, Sunrise!” Amber’s loud voice rang out. Amber was her age, but Sunrise had never really liked the loud, talkative lioness. 

“Samson wants to speak to me?” Sunrise asked. Samson was the pride’s leader. Why would he want to talk with her? 

“You’d better hurry up,” Amber said. “He won’t wait forever.”

So Sunrise headed for the leader’s den.  It was a small space under the rock. On the other side was a much larger space for the cubs and their mother to sleep in. Samson emerged from his den and shook out his fur. 

“Sunrise, it’s good to see you.” His calm voice seemed like it could still any water. “You’ve been hunting very well recently. I was wondering if you would like to be the hunter for a while?” Sunrise gasped; being the hunter was a great honour. If she was hunter it would mean she had to hunt prey for the leader and his family every day! It may be more work, but it’s a sign that the leader trusts her.

“Okay!”  

Once she had left Samson’s den, she ran to Drizzle.  “I got chosen as the hunter!” she told Drizzle triumphantly. Drizzle smiled. “That’s great!”

Sunrise looked up to see small herd of gazelle. She couldn’t stop herself from thinking about how jealous Amber would be.  If Sunrise made the right moves, she could catch half the herd of gazelle. A prickle of doubt glued her to the ground. What if she failed? Then she thought about what Amber’s face would look like. She roared, sending the gazelles running. She leaped into the great acacia. The herd, not seeing her, came to the tree for cover. Before Sunrise could leap down, she noticed Amber in the distance. Sunrise roared as loud as she could; this was her prey! Then she realized what she had done. The gazelle, hearing the roar, galloped away.

She gave Samson a small shrew. “I’m sorry, I scared all the gazelle away,” she sighed. “I was about to get them, but I saw Amber and roared at her so that she didn’t come near...and the gazelle heard me.”

Samson smiled at her. “Amber always wanted to be your friend. We all make mistakes, Sunrise; you are forgiven. Take Amber out hunting today. I’m sure you’ll find plenty of prey.” So the two lionesses went hunting together and eventually became friends. Sunrise knew that she’d failed her task, and she would always remember Samson’s mercy.

Children (12 and under) are eligible for the $20 Suzannah Rowntree Prize in each category.

Non-Fiction

Child (12 and under) Finalists

My World

By Liliana Baehr

Even though I’m 10 years old, I like knowing about my world. I hear about a few things that are really bad. I like to think about them and pray, because I know that God is always listening to our prayers and loves us.

Treating black people like they are not humans isn’t right, because black people are like white people. There’s nothing different. I’ve heard lots of people on the internet that have been bad and mean to black people. Like if black people are actors in movies, people will say “Oh, I don’t want black people. Why can’t it be a white person?” Black people are friends and family.

I’ve heard many bad stories about Ukraine and about how the Russian government has been very horrible. Russia has been beating up people who are not in the war and stealing thousands of kids. In war, you are only meant to fight the soldiers. Not the kids.

I have heard how much pain and sadness and bad things have been happening around the world. But there are also good things. I am very happy that millions of people in the world have found God. I like to think about most of the good things, but sometimes I get really upset about the bad things. I am very glad that I have family and friends that care about me and love me. I hope for many people all over the world, that they will have friends and family who care about them and love them.

Every time I go to bed, I try to remember to pray for people who need more love.

An Eventful Easter

By Sarah Hurst

Ding dong! My grandma opened the door as my parents carried some drinks up to the porch. She was wearing a pink apron with her hair in a ponytail. "Come in," she said as we hugged her and took our shoes off. It was Easter, and we were having an Easter egg hunt and brunch at Grandma's house, I was 7 and my brother 10. Our Uncle Travis and Mr. George were also there, helping to make brunch in the kitchen. The delicious aroma of all the food crept up on us as we entered the kitchen. We sat down at the table and it was finally time for brunch.

Brunch at Grandma's house was the best I ever had in my life. Mouth-watering eggs, delicious bacon, creamy whipped cream, fresh fruit, delicious sausage, stomach-filling pancakes, and even more! I can't list every scrumptious thing there. I had a delicious pancake, with fruit, whipped cream, eggs, and bacon. After we were all super full, and too full to eat more, we decided it was time for the egg hunt. (Which Jonathan and I were super excited for!).

The egg hunt was outside in Grandma's backyard. There were 30 eggs in total. 15 for me and 15 for Jonathan. Grandma handed us our baskets, and counted down: "3 . . . 2 . . . 1," and we were off. Five minutes later, Jonathan found his first egg. "I found one! I found one!" He kept shouting. It was halfway covered by a leaf. Jonathan uncovered it as we ran over to see where it was. When Jonathan uncovered the leaf, it revealed that the egg had already been cracked open. The chocolate inside was already eaten, too. We were so disappointed. We had been waiting all day for finding the eggs. A few minutes later, after finding the same result, egg after egg, we heard a little rip, and a little nibble.

What is it? Is it an animal? Is it the rough terrain? I wondered as we followed the sound. It turned out to be a squirrel. A squirrel! We couldn't believe it! As soon as it saw us, it ran, its mouth full of chocolate. Luckily, there were 2 golden eggs inside. So we went inside and looked for those.

The eggs had $15. One for me, and one for Jonathan. Once we found them, we were very happy with our $15 (we both spent it on Lego toys). That was the most funny Easter I have ever had, and ever will have. Uncle Travis named him Bob. Upsetting things can come with funny experiences. Bob upset us at first, because he took our eggs. But as he kept coming back, we grew a relationship with him. And we enjoyed seeing Bob more than we were upset about losing the candy. For 2 1/2 years, the squirrel kept coming back. One day he didn't come again and we decided that was the end of Bob. But I still think about him when I have chocolate on Easter.

It's Not Fair,
But My Dad is Amazing

By Tommy Wilkins

My dad is amazing. He has health problems and can't do a lot of things but that doesn't stop him from being amazing. He makes amazing music and even makes machines to help him. His music sounds like the middle of a beautiful forest and the taste of raw cookie dough and everything good. Sometimes he can't play with us but he never loses hope and I think he never will lose hope and will always laugh and never show anything is wrong. And sometimes he can play, and it is wonderful, and I will always be amazed at how hard he tries, and he always finds a way to succeed. My eternal hope is that he will get better but even if he doesn't it won't matter because my dad is amazing.

Poetry

Child (12 and under) Finalists

Justice and Mercy Concerning Friendship

By Mercy Drew

On murder, fraud and robber your world is bound to dwell; Power, wealth, and burglary sends guilty to the cell.

But, when looking back at home, what cause is there of strife?
What of those sly, malicious words which bring sorrow to our life?

The kicking, the violence, the shouting too, these ‘little’ things cause harm to you.
The law keeps quiet.
The knot gets tight.

And God just sits there, out of sight.

I cry for help. I share my pain.
I show him my friend’s ‘evil’ stain. We, as humans, always will
put blame on others. Words can kill.

This world has little Justice. Your friend will not get nailed. And yet, is poor in Mercy. Your love for them had failed.

But God is rich in Justice.
And God does know my pain.
But then how can he judge that friend when I am just the same!

For God is great in Mercy,
he gives time we don’t deserve, to see the plank in our eyes,
to fix our un-clean curve.

If God had only justice,
and had not Mercy too,
then all we’d be is ash and dust. There’d never have been a you.

If God had only mercy,
and nothing more than that,
then where would we have ended up? Where would our world be at?

So when you feel frustrated,
when friends get out of hand,
God is wise, and God is just,
and you’ll see what he has planned.

Job

By Elsa Imms

To be sung to the tune of 'Mary had a little lamb’

In the far off land of Uz, off land of Uz, off land of Uz, In the far off land of Uz, there lived a man named Job.

And, everywhere our hero went, hero went, hero went, Everywhere our hero went, blessings were sure to go.

But Satan went to God one day, God one day, God one day, Satan went to God one day, and asked to change the rules.

God said: you may break his things, shake his things, take his things, God said: you may shake his things, but kill Job and you’re through.

And that day servants came to Job, came to Job, came to Job, That day servants came to Job with tragic tales of woe.

The servants said: your oxen? DEAD, sheep are? DEAD, kids are? DEAD, And all the other servants? DEAD, we lone survive to tell you.

And job replied: “Lord take away, take away, take away,
Still may the name of Lord be praised”, and still he did not sin.

Then Satan did some more bad things, more bad things, more bad things, Satan did some more bad things, which I will not describe.

And Job did well to still not sin, still not sin, still not sin, Job did well to still not sin, and only curse his birth.

So God restored all that he had, that he had, that he had, God restored all that he had, then gave him even more.

Job lived to see his grandchildren, grandchildren, grandchildren, Job lived to see his grandchildren, and great grandchildren too.

That means he lived one hundred years, hundred years, hundred years, That means he lived one hundred years, and over forty more.

And so Job died a happy man, happy man, happy man, And so Job died a happy man, and I need sing no more.

The True Slave

By Anna Micklethwaite

Bold of wit they called him, Keen of eye.
He strode in boldly;
He does not stride anymore

Weak of race the Man called him, Scorn of being
High on money, the Man stands But fear in mind.

Anxious for respect Hunger burns inside. A mental bind

They said take care, beware The Man is cruel and unjust. But the slave spoke his mind. Chained and tossed,

Tightly tied,
Whipped and beaten, The slave cried.

The Man does not care, the Man does not wince Poised of stature they called him,
But poison of brain.
He lusts for comfort and power

But he seeks in vain.

At the end of the day, when the Man goes to bed He fears what they thought.
Yet, when the slave goes to sleep,
He dreams a dream,

A dream of justice and equality A time when freedom rings.

Child (12 and under) Runners Up (Poetry)

Forgive 77

By Layla Imms

Peter, apostle, was wronged many times,
He wanted to teach them a lesson.
He was angry, lashed out,
His foot hit a chair,
They knew not with whom they were messin’.

“How dare they?!” he thought.
He shouted and cried,
But slowly his anger subsided.
“I forgave Fred already, but how many times?!
And don’t get me started on Clyde!”

Then a thought hit him,
“I’ve got it!” he yelled.
Who better to ask, than Jesus?
He’s the sin-smashing death-crushing dude On High,
And through him, mercy upheld.

He ran for the door,
Opened it wide,
Then out onto the street he scrambled,
Ran to the lake, climbed on a boat,
Then sailed to the other side.

There he found Jesus,
Preaching ‘bout sin.
Quickly he ran to the front,
“Messiah,” he cried. “Jesus, please help!”
“Look how much trouble I’m in!”

“Dude, patience, my friend.
Forgive Fred again”.
“Again? How many times? 7? 8? 10?
I think he’s forgiven enough!”
“Oh Peter, not seven. Times it by eleven or ten!”

So Jesus sighed, and told a parable,
Of which you’ve possibly heard.
With an unmerciful servant,
Who, though he was forgiven, did not forgive,
Now isn’t that absurd?

So when somebody does you wrong,
Who, then should you be?
Like Jesus, our merciful guiding light,
Or a hardened merciless hypocrite,
Or a sinful pharisee?

No Way Home

By Izzy Prins

I’m all alone in the blackest of black
I’ve run from home with just my dog and a snack
I feel so mad it makes me sad
All alone with no way home

Out in the cold and I’ve been told
To never run from home
Then I see a shining light
It dazzles me it is so bright
I hear a voice it says “come
Come near and hear some wisdom”

So, near I came and heard what my parents told me to observe,
“There was a boy who was lost and coy and ran away to waist his days.
But, he made a mistake with parties and cake and ended up with the pigs.
He had no food, realised he had been rude and made a huge mistake.
So back he went with no letters sent and saw his father weeping.
Then he changed his ways with no craze and had life with his father for the rest of his days.”

Then I considered what wisdom had said and changed the voice inside my head. I went back home thinking of the throne and what the Lord had said. Then I went to bed with no words said about the night that I had just had.

So now I know I should never go, so far from my true home.

Children (12 and under) are eligible for the $20 Suzannah Rowntree Prize in each category.

Teen - Fiction

Teen (13-17) Finalists

Face of Mercy

By Evelyn Baehr

Today is a day of festivities in Shiloh. We celebrate another bountiful harvest since our God brought us out of Egypt to this land of great beauty. A beauty I have not inherited, with my misshapen nose and sunken eyes.

Swirling skirts and thonged feet sway and skip to the music of singing and bangles. My favourite part of the festival; where all the young women gather together to dance, to talk quietly of secrets, and to laugh loudly of stories.

I close my eyes, I feel a breeze whisper against my cheek, and I can almost smell through my twisted nose the scent of fruits in the orchard around us. My hands are grabbed and I look into the face of my best friend Rebecca. Her hair swirls behind her as she dances with me. “You look beautiful, sister,” she says.

We have always felt like sisters, even though we aren’t, even though we look as different as possible. She is beautiful, with long, dark, curly hair, perfect skin, and dark eyelashes.

“Don’t be silly. I look like a smushed donkey in girl’s clothes.” We laugh and then she looks at me seriously.

“No,” she says. “You’re beautiful because God made you. He has a plan for you, He put you here for a reason, even if you can’t yet see what that reason is.”

Suddenly there’s a shout. I turn around and there are men, men everywhere. I feel the other girls’ shock:
“Why are they here?”
“They look like Benjamites.”

One of the men steps forward. “You have all been assigned to us as brides. The other tribes have agreed on it. We do not wish to harm you, we only wish to make a home for you.”

A shocked silence and then one of the girls speaks up. “No. We will not go. This is our home.”

The next few moments are chaos. I close my eyes and try to wake up from this nightmare, but when I open my eyes, I’m still there. I lose Rebecca’s arm. Someone puts a hand on my shoulder. I hope it’s Rebecca. But it’s not, it’s one of the men. He sees my face and recoils. He turns away to find someone else. Other girls are being led and dragged away. And then I see Rebecca. I run towards her, stumbling into others. I grab her hand but I can’t hold it; a man is already pulling on her other arm. “Rebecca! You can’t leave me!”

She smiles weakly. “I don’t have a choice. But now you know why you’re here, they won’t take you. Go tell our fathers of this evil, go tell them now!”

And then she’s gone. I kneel in the empty orchard. I clench my hands and feel something bite into my palm. I open my hand and there, glinting in the sunlight, is Rebecca’s ring. I look at it closely, realising there are words engraved on it. God is Merciful.

The Merciful Victim

By Vivienne Banks

In a green country, a young man trudged through the drenching misty rain. He was looking for someone. The murderer of his daughter. With him he carried a bow and quiver of arrows and at his belt hung a short sheathed knife.

In time, he found the murderer. He was in a cave beneath a hidden overhang by a river. The cave was wet and the wood that the wretch was using to attempt to kindle a feeble fire was damp.

The young man stood in the misty, smoky entrance of the cave and watched as the murderer struggled with the fire. Then, the assassin must have heard a slight movement from the young man, for he looked up suddenly, dropping a wet log on the fire and snuffing it out.

The only light was now from the dim mouth of the cave.The young man advanced as the murderer backed away, tripping and falling on the collected wood.

“You killed my daughter, murderer.” the father said, and the murderer hung his head. “I cannot deny that you rightfully call me a murderer. That is what I am.” he said.

The young man answered him, “I could kill you right now, and even if I didn’t the authorities would find you and do it for me.”

The murderer closed his eyes. “Kill me then.” he said. The young man extended his hand, “No.”

The cowering killer’s eyes snapped open and he saw the young man’s outstretched hand.

“Get up, I won’t hurt you.” the young man said, his face as a mask concealing repressed anger.

‘Why?” the murderer exclaimed, stunned. “You don’t even know why I killed your daughter. You don’t know how evil my intent was. I deserve to die.”

The young man nodded, “Yes you do. But I set out to find you and found you ashamed. I didn’t shoot you as soon as I saw you because if no one had mercy, no one would ever forgive and life would be ruined. I would have killed you and the authorities would have killed me. In the end, everyone would be seeking vengeance and we would kill each other.” The man repressed revulsion as the murderer took his hand and he pulled him to his feet.

“This is not easy for me, and I still think of you as a murderer, but I will do what I can to keep you safe. Live with me and I will hide you. You will live.” and the young man took in the murderer of his daughter. He did not kill him with vengeance but forgave him with mercy.

The Isle of Oakshire

By Elnathan Drew

C. C. C. C. Le Stranger

For Sam

The isle of Oakshire sits in the Atlantic Ocean between England and Iceland. Despite this, the climate is warm and friendly, and so are the people, at first introduction. The island has a massive amount of history for a place of its size, not to mention the fact that most of it is covered in thick, wild, woods. The woods are alive with ruins and historical scenes, however, and a walk through it is one of the most interesting you can take.

However, the people of the town of Colletton, the main haven, fear the woods. The legendary town of MelonGourd, which lies within, is known as Nutterton by the civilians. MelonGourd and the old woods and ruins remind them of the bloody history they do not wish to remember. They look on Nutterton as a monument to danger, rashness and immorality, and are greatly shocked by their injustice to murderers, and merciless acceptance of continual loss of family and friends. These beliefs evolved from the stories of scandal, fear and death pouring from MelonGourd’s gates. This fear is not exactly unfounded.

MelonGourd is a town made up of wealthy old fashioned families who have lived on the island for about 500 years or more. Most of it is made up of rambling mansions which are spread out all through the woods for 30 miles from the town center. The main leading family of MelonGourd is the family of Le Stranger, who dwell in the Le Stranger mansion, which was constructed in 1409 by the family patriarch, Sextus Le Stranger, a very colorful character. Over the years, the Le Strangers took over much of the island, and constructed countless fortresses and settlements.

When they were finally forced to leave these lands in 1829, they abandoned their forts, thus the ruins, and recoiled to their original stronghold in the town of MelonGourd. Other families are Burgoyne, Diggory, De Freminator, Nearfern, Deadhand, Mansdell, and Blacksmith. Through the ages, all these families have been plagued by mysterious disappearances, murders (which became so commonplace they were never brought to justice) and scandals. However, many of their descendants enjoyed the strange and hair curling tales of their ancestry, calling them ‘interesting’.

All this inspires the inhabitants of Colletton to believe that the MelonGourd families are nutters. However, most of the Collettons are descendants of the people of MelonGourd. The MelonGourds say it is the cursed coastal boarding school, St Anthony’s, that brings their bad luck. Yet they send every one of their children to this school in every generation. Over the years, St Anthony’s has become as much a symbol of mystery as MelonGourd. St Anthony’s has strange customs and keeps very little watch over the students. Ultimately, the reasons for Oakshire’s troubles remain a mystery for your imagination. Because to you Oakshire can be anything you want it to be.

Claudius Cygnus Corvus Ciraculous Le Stranger

Teen - Non-Fiction and Poetry

We had no teen submissions make finalist in the non-fiction and poetry categories this year. We do notice that a few of our regular child submitters are about to age into the teen category and look forward to what that means for the future. And we encourage all our young adult writers to enter next year's festival.

Special Thanks

We are so very grateful to Suzannah Rowntree for sponsoring our child literary prizes. The teen literary prizes were sponsored by us at Pilgrim Artists.

All works on this page are copyright their original authors. The Pilgrim Hill Association Inc has been granted a permanent but non-exclusive right to publish these works. We hope you enjoy them.