Teen writing competition in Dunedin gets creative during lockdown

In spite of the current lockdown caused by the coronavirus outbreak, Dunedin (New Zealand), a UNESCO Creative City of Literature, continues to provide space for writers and poets to express and share their creative and imaginative world.

To support teens in adjusting to the ongoing period of isolation, the city of Dunedin launched a teen creative writing competition. Organized in partnership with the Dunedin Public Art Gallery and the city’s Public Libraries, the contest coincides with the public art exhibition ‘A Land of Granite: McCahon and Otago’, one of New Zealand’s key 20th century painters.

Drawing inspiration from the exhibition, the competition invites teen writers to share a piece of fiction of of up to 750 words inspired by some of Colin McCahon’s artwork depicting Otago landscapes. The writing competition was opened to all students aged 9 to 12. One of Dunedin’s well-known writers, Robyn Maree Pickens, will judge the competition.

Home to many significant national libraries and book collections, the city, with its beautiful landscape, has inspired many poets and writers in the past including poet Thomas Bracken, author of New Zealand’s national anthem, to delve into the literary world. The competition has allowed budding young writers to get inspired and express their thoughts and vision in a creative manner.

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