Fireball award for short story winner

Heather Gourlay, president of the Angus Writers’ Circle, welcomed Anne Downie, the well-known Scottish actress and writer to the meeting on Wednesday, August 15.

Mrs Downie had been invited to adjudicate the Circle’s August competition, a general short story.

The evening was a jointly funded event by Angus Writers’ Circle and Creative Scotland’s Live Literature programme, which is managed by Scottish Book Trust.

The scheme exists to bring Scottish fiction writers, playwrights, poets, storytellers and their work to every corner of Scottish society including schools, libraries, writers groups, additional support needs organisations, community groups and literary organisations.

The scheme subsidises up to 1,200 writer events around the country each year, reaching an average annual audience of over 50,000 people.

A talented actress, Anne Downie has appeared in television productions such as ‘Taggart’, ‘Glasgow Kiss’ and ‘High Road’.

She has appeared in the ‘Widows of Clythe’ in Dundee Repertory Theatre.

Mrs Downie began by saying that the standard of writing was very high. Every entry was given a detailed critique and each member felt that they had learned something new about their writing.

There was a wide range of subjects covering dementia, murder, domestic problems, and a modern setting for the nativity story.

One point that Anne returned to in a number of the stories was that no writing should be wasted. She pointed out that some of the entries would make ideal radio plays.

There were two commended, two highly commended stories, and the winners were as follows:- 1, Hazel Ellis-Saxon, ‘What Shall We Do About Mum’; 2, Dr Eric Yeaman, ‘Buachaille Etive Mor’; 3, Silvie Taylor, ‘Deadline’.

Mrs Downie presented Hazel Ellis-Saxon with the Fireball, the Circle trophy.

The Angus Writers’ Circle meets on the first and third Wednesday of every month from 7.30 to 10 p.m. in the Rosely Hotel, Arbroath. New members are always welcome.