The Squat Pen Rests Short Story Writing Competition Champion of the World is…



Why, oh , why did I never learn to play the trumpet? No need to reply. I’m asking rhetorically. But I tell you what, learning to play the trumpet would have proved mighty useful these past few weeks.

Right now I’d be playing dun-dun-dun-dah! Dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-DAH! notes on my trumpet. And, I’d be dressed as a Cold Stream Guard or similar. I might even pop on a bearskin hat.

But why would you behave and dress in such a fashion, I hear you gnash.

Well, because we had the SPRSSWCCotW event a week ago last Friday and it was a grand success. Over 100 plus guests arrived to listen to our six uber-finalists: Chris Fielden, Pippa Gladhill, Mark Rutterford, Jacci Gooding, Nicolas Ridley and Elaine Miles, recite six fabulous stories. And the 100 plus were not disappointed as we were regaled, enthralled, titillated, amused, terrified, amazed, and astonished, all in equal measure. There was music provided by George Wilding that was so sublime it should really have been reserved for the ears of angels – it was that good – honest. If you don’t believe me, go listen to him here:

Moving on – the enigmatic author and Bridge playing Crown Bowls genius that is Mike Martin, presented the winner with an original ‘SPRSSWCCotW winner’s mug stuffed with five very crisp (and a little bit rubbery) £10 notes.

But who (or whom…I can never remember which), is the winner? Whoooom, won?

No more fanfares (yeah, I know we haven’t had one but bear with me), the very first ever SPR winner is:

Nicolas Ridley reading ‘Always’ 

So, there you have it. It was such a close run thing too which required recounts to be absolutely sure we’d got the numbers right. Huge congrats to Nicolas and commiserations but awe and admiration to our other five readers.

Keep an eye out this week as I post our finalist stories for your pleasure and delight.

Finally – what a wonderful venue, staff and audience – I couldn’t have been happier with the outcome and I hope everyone had a good time and will, perhaps, come along to the next one – if there is a next one.