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Results of Winter 2018/19 Competition

Winners announced

We’re delighted to announce the winners of our fourth Solution Loans Short Story Competition in which we asked writers to submit short stories with the title or theme of “A New Home.”

This was a popular theme, with a high number of excellent entries. There were several stories based around the idea of  a new home/ new start following an unhappy relationship or a broken marriage. There was also a huge range of type of “new home” including convents,  remote islands and even a gingerbread house!

Ultimately our judges said the winning stories were those which they felt were emotionally engaging, often from an interesting point of view, with great writing and story-telling.

The winner receives a cheque for £200 and each runner up £50. All have their stories published on our website.

Winner: Coming Home by Carol Lewis-Powell
Runners Up: Four Kids and a Mortgage by Mark Mulholland
  The Bottom Stair by Alyson Hilbourne
  A New Home by Katie Phillips

Comments on Winner & Runners Up


Coming Home by Carol Lewis-Powell (read story)

Our judges said:

We liked how Carol interpreted the usual concept of a new home being an exciting and welcoming idea. We felt this story was brimming with the emotions of a young woman contemplating her new life, using some wonderful imagery and description. There was also a charming sense of personal growth in the story arc. Overall, a well-written and moving story.


Four Kids and a Mortgage by Mark Mulholland (read story)

Our judges said:

What we particularly liked about Mark’s story is how he looks at the concept of ‘home’ beyond that of a physical, bricks and mortar structure. He shows us how a sense of home and belonging can be found in simple pleasures: routines and rituals, favourite foods and, of course, love and companionship.  Some lovely lyrical writing with the Irish voice and great use of symbolism in this story.

The Bottom Stair by Alyson Hilbourne (read story)

Our judges said:

This was another story which had a slightly different viewpoint on the sense of “home” – this time from through the eyes of a child. A sad and chilling story, which nevertheless had some charming moments of humour and lovely description. We felt Alyson captured the child’s viewpoint very well, with some very accurate insights and observations.

A New Home by Katie Phillips (read story)

Our judges said:

We found Katie’s story to be intriguing from the very beginning. Early hints suggest that all is not quite as it appears. The characters are well-drawn, with small details adding depth and dialogue is used to establish the on-going relationships. Katie chose an interesting idea as the reason for a new home and although sad, the ending left the reader with a glimmer of hope.

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