This week saw the launch of Project Remix – current Waterstones Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman’s nationwide competition to find the UK’s best young writers and creatives. Blackman’s second, and final, major Children’s Laureate project celebrates the art of storytelling, in all its forms, and is being hosted on the teenage story-sharing community Movellas.com. The competition, open to UK residents aged 13-19 years, will be judged by Blackman, with entries published on the website and the winners announced at an exclusive event in April 2015.
To enter, teenagers are asked to make their own creative work in response to a selection of acclaimed literature – featuring fiction, poetry, graphic novels and short stories from some of the bestselling contemporary and classic authors, including: John Green, Suzanne Collins, Philip Pullman, Benjamin Zephaniah, Jane Austen, Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker. Entries can be submitted into five categories: Music, Book Cover Design, Book Trailer, Creative Writing, and Comic Strip.
The aim of the competition is to engage young people with literature, using it as a creative springboard into other storytelling mediums, and to open doors to the arts and the creative industries. It was inspired by the growth of online fandom, including fan fiction and fan art and the surge in related digital communities.
“Teenagers are some of the most passionate, dynamic and creative people I know. Yet too often this creative spark is left to flicker precariously and sometimes fade entirely. Project Remix is all about fuelling that inventive spark, encouraging young people to view literature in fresh and exciting ways, putting creative control directly back into their hands. Imagine Austen’s Pride and Prejudice remixed into a drum and bass anthem or saxophone solo, Collins’ The Hunger Games reimagined as a vibrant comic strip, and Ness’ The Knife of Never Letting Go brought to life as a suspenseful book trailer,” commented Blackman.
”As well as celebrating story in all its forms, I hope Remix will shine a light on the vast range of opportunities that there are in the creative industries for our young people – so often overlooked within traditional careers guidance.”
Project Remix will go live on the Movellas website at www.projectremix.co.uk, with further information about the competition, plus resources to help young people create their entries, including guidance and insider tips from top industry experts from each category.
The full list of Project Remix selected works of literature:
- Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (Vintage Classics)
- Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman (Random House Children’s Books)
- Tamsin and the Deep comic strip by Neill Cameron and Kate Brown (The Phoenix Comic)
- The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic)
- ‘Hear and Now’ poem by Laura Dockrill (unpublished)
- Say Her Name by James Dawson (Hot Key Books)
- The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle (Vintage Classics)
- Heroic by Phil Earle (Penguin Children’s Books)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (Random House Children’s Books)
- Coram Boy by Jamila Gavin (Egmont)
- The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Penguin Children’s Books)
- ‘Oh, Whistle and I’ll Come To You My Lad’ short story by M. R. James (Vintage Classics)
- ‘The Alumni Interview’ (short story from How they Met) by David Levithan (Egmont)
- Split Second by Sophie McKenzie (Simon & Schuster)
- The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness (Walker Books)
- Wonder by R J Palacio (Random House Children’s Books)
- Northern Lights by Philip Pullman (Scholastic)
- (Un)arranged Marriage by Bali Rai (Random House Children’s Books)
- Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (Macmillan Children’s Books)
- She is Not Invisible by Marcus Sedgwick (Orion Children’s Books)
- ‘Ozymandias’ poem by Percy Bysshe Shelley (Vintage Classics)
- Geek Girl by Holly Smale (HarperCollins Children’s Books)
- Dracula by Bram Stoker (Vintage Classics)
- ’We Refugees’ (poem from Wicked World) by Benjamin Zephaniah (Penguin Children’s Books)
Competition category requirements:
- Creative writing: write your own piece of fiction inspired by your chosen book, story or poem. Word limit: up to 2,000 words
- Comic strip: create your own comic strip inspired by your chosen book, story or poem. Limit: up to three A4 pages
- Cover design: design or illustrate your own alternative cover for your chosen book
- Book trailer: produce a book trailer – a short piece of film, like a film trailer – for your chosen book, story or poem. Limit: up to 2 minutes
- Music: write and perform a song or a piece of original music inspired by your chosen book, story or poem. Limit: up to 3 minutes