Hot Press has joined forces with Creative Ireland to launch a new national writing competition, which will allow young students to reflect on the influence of social media.
Over the past fifteen years, with the rise of social media, the most extraordinary changes have taken place in society. In terms of the way we communicate, a whole new world has opened up as people make use of Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram, and a whole host of other platforms and apps.
There are huge pluses involved, as we our able to connect and communicate faster than ever before. But there have been downsides too, with Fake News dominating elections, social media bullying impacting adversely on individuals, and the culture of social media affecting the way we live our lives.
Speaking today about the competition, the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD said: "I am delighted that my Department, through the Creative Ireland Programme, is partnering with Hot Press Magazine to encourage and promote new young writers. The theme of this year's Write Here Write Now initiative, Social Media: A Writer's Tale, is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the imagination and insight of our young people on something that has become such an important part of our everyday lives and the medium of a generation."
One of the key objectives of the Creative Ireland Programme is to nurture and develop new creative talent. In Write Here, Write Now, Hot Press and Creative Ireland aim to uncover the best new writing talent in the country.
In Social Media: A Writer’s Tale, we want young people to unleash their imagination and create a story which involves – or which reflects on – the good, the bad, the humorous and the absurd nature of this social and cultural phenomenon.
“We know from experience that there is an extraordinary wealth of talent among the student community here in Ireland,” Hot Press editor Niall Stokes said. “But that talent needs to be nurtured and encouraged. The most important moment in the career of any great writer is when you start. To stick those words down, put a shape on them, get the feel for how to tell a story or construct a piece of literature – that is the act through which you begin to understand what it is all about. The purpose of Write Here, Write Now is to draw people into this vital creative landscape, to help them to find their voices – and then to celebrate the achievement of those who show very special talent.”
TELLING YOUR TALE
In 500 words or less, we’re asking entrants to lay down their vision, create a ﬁctional world, or reﬂect on the theme of social media and its impact on our lives in whatever way they think works best. Competition entries can be in the form of stories, poems, songs, monologues, film scripts – or whatever creative medium the entrant chooses.
The competition will be a test of creativity, originality, style – and of the ability to entertain or enthral.
Our special panel of writing experts will include the Booker-prize winning D.B.C. Pierre; the multiple award winning crime writer Tana French; recent winner of the Goldsmiths Prize, Mike McCormack; the acclaimed poet Rita Ann Higgins; Hot Press Editor Niall Stokes; and Deputy Editor Stuart Clark.
There are separate competitions and prizes for students at Secondary Level (Leaving Certificate 5th and 6th Year & GCSE/A-Level); and Tertiary Level (students who still at college/university, as well as anyone who have finished third level education in the past 12 months).
There will be one male and one female winner from both Second and Third Levels, making if four national winners in all. These four overall winners will win an internship in Hot Press, during the spring or summer of 2018. They will also receive a superb Canon PowerShot SX620, a €250 cash prize, a Certiﬁcate of Achievement from Write Here, Write Now, and other great prizes.
There will be more winners too…
Even if you aren’t one of the four winners, there’s a still a chance to come away with some marvellous prizes. Four runners-up, one from each province, will be selected in both Second Level and Third Level categories to receive special prizes. And there will also be prizes for ten additional runners-up – amounting to 22 lucky winners in all.
This fantastic competition is open to anyone throughout Ireland and there is NO ENTRY FEE.