Wednesday, October 29, 2008


"The writer's conference was one of the most wonderful experiences of my life and just to see who writers are in all shapes and forms as well as the hundreds of ways one can write really helped me realize I want to do this for the rest of my life." Shane Campbell

As one of the four judges for the Lisa Rector Young Writers Scholarship 2008, I can tell you what an amazing success this scholarship turned out to be.

One hundred and fourteen students applied from around the world--far more than Lisa and the judges anticipated. But it was the quality of writing that blew us all away--the top ten applicants submitted writing that was 95% better than my adult writers produce. The judging was the most difficult I have ever done.

All the top five came from British Columbia!! Here are the results:

1st: Sophia Ma, a 10th grade student from North Vancouver, for Pushing Back the Tide

2nd: Shane Campbell, a 12th grade student from Vancouver, for The Diary of Eric Daniels

3rd: Ariana Vasey, a 9th grade student from Coquitlam, for The Inuksuk

Honorable mentions: Alison Burns, a 10th grade student enrolled in a 12th grade writing program in North Vancouver, for Auburn Queen; and Gavin Luymes, an 8th grade student in Abbotsford, for Finding McGregor.

Sophia Ma earned the chance to attend the full two and a half days of the Surrey International Writers' Conference this past weekend. Everyone else, but Gavin, came all day Friday, as well as attended the Awards Banquet in the evening.

At the end of Friday when the judges and winners gathered to eat dinner together, the students had stars in their eyes. They were awestruck with the workshops they attended and simply thrilled with everything they learned. It was an amazing day!

The winners' submissions are posted at Click on the winners' names to access their stories.