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Precious victory in AHSS Storytelling Competition

Published: 23 June 2020 at 14:46

Frame from graphic novel by Precious Asande Karley

Comberton student ‘scores top marks’ with graphic novel

We’re pleased to announce that Precious Asande Karley, a Year 12 student from Comberton Sixth Form College, has won our recent Storytelling Competition, with runner up prizes going to Poppy Lee of West Suffolk College and Jake McEvoy from Long Road Sixth Form College.

The competition was run as part of our National Storytelling Week 2020 celebrations.

1st Prize - Precious Asande Karley

You can see a sample image from Precious' entry at the top of the page.

Allan Drummond, award-winning illustrator and Lecturer on our BA (Hons) Illustration, said of Precious' winning submission: 'This brilliant entry scores top marks in each category. It’s a graphic-novel style story told with a truly original voice. In it we see, read and hear the tangled and jangled thoughts of the author herself as she battles with the issue of identity. Her only weapon is her pen.'

On hearing about her success, Precious told us: 'I hope I get to do a lot more of these competitions, I'm in love with storytelling and I can't express how grateful I am to be awarded for something I adore. One day I aspire to do it for a living, story boarding, script editing and show running is the dream.'

Runner up - Poppy Lee, The Poppies

Poppy’s entry was a 500-word story about an ex-soldier’s fascination with poppies. Here is a sample of her writing:

‘They reminded James of the war, as they did for many others. He often found peace when he thought about how, somewhere in the world, someone was looking at the same simple flower as he, and unknowingly sharing a moment of history. Maybe they were brothers in arms, enemies. Maybe the father of a lost loved one. The poppies united them. In times like that, it didn't matter if they were on opposing sides, the poppies were that reassuring constant that even the worst places, the roughest places, can hold life; flowers can bloom. Miracles can happen.’


After judging all the entries, our Creative Writing team said of Poppy’s: ‘We were impressed with the variety and style of all the entries, but we would like to award the runner up prize to the writer of 'The Poppies'.

‘In a short space, 'The Poppies' manages to be both wise and beautiful. With lovely descriptive language, the writer summons up the scatterings of red poppies that spring up on roadsides and between pavement cracks, beautiful and fragile. Where other people see weeds, the narrator James looks at the poppies and the experience links him with memory, and with other people, living and dead, all over the world. The end beautifully encapsulates a sentiment that is more pressing than ever: 'All we have is now.'

‘We would like to congratulate the young writer on a really impressive story!’

Poppy told us: ‘I am so happy I worked up the courage to share my writing as I’ve never usually had the confidence to, and having come runner up has really made me doubt myself less! Well done to the other winners too!’

Runner up - Jake McEvoy, The Guest


Sophie Jackson, Course Leader for our BA (Hons) Film and TV Production, said of Jake’s entry: ‘Of all the possible mediums, film is the most tricky to realise in lockdown. The story has to come from the imagination but be realised in very physical terms. The filmmaker of The Guest has imagined a clever story to make use of what was available - namely their house and householders. It is also a story with a moral question and this is nice to see. There is a good amount of work here scripting and planning the shot list, good screen grammar to give enough footage to edit it all together quite seamlessly. There is some really imaginative framing and a very good reveal at the end.’

Jake told us: ‘I am really glad that I won this prize, I am really glad that my media production work has paid off and it has motivated me to continue to strive with film and TV production'

Congratulations go to all our winners, as well as our best wishes for their future creative endeavours.