Posts Tagged First World War
Sunday November 11th 2018 marks 100 years since the end of World War 1. There will be many events to mark this important occasion and to thank those who lost their lives for us. These include 10,000 people marching past the Cenotaph in London (ballot applications to be part of the march close 12th August) and mass church bell ringing across the nation.
Poets are also playing their part in the 100 days leading up to the centenary of the Armistice. Every day a 100-word piece of writing, known as a centena, will be published by the Imperial War Museum. In each piece, the first three words are repeated at the end, as the conclusion. Each centena will focus on an individual who lived during the First World War and the impact the war had on that person. The aim is to look at people from every part of society. Katie Childs from the museum told the Sunday Times, “By releasing a centena each day, I hope that we are able to demonstrate the very different experiences of the First World War, and the impact it had on people and places long beyond the Armistice.”
The first centena was published on Sunday 5th August and was written by Angus Grundy from the perspective of Leopold Lojka. Lojka was driving the car carrying Archduke Franz Ferdinand when he was assassinated. Ferdinand’s murder led to the First World War. The second centena is by Therese Kieran and is about a Belgian embroider who spent the War in Ireland. I find today’s centena by Miranda Dickinson particularly moving. It’s about a bride married during her new husband’s 48 hour leave from the army. He returns to the front line and she goes to pose for a wedding photograph alone.
These pieces of writing are a fitting memorial to those who lived through such turbulent times and perhaps they’ll inspire some of us to get creative before November 11th 2018.
As you’re probably all aware, next year is the centenary of the start of the First World War.
I’m sure that as the date gets closer there will be a lot of publicity about the multitude of events arranged to mark the occasion.
There’s going to be plenty of opportunity for us, as writers, to get involved with this anniversary – as long as we don’t leave it too late to get started!
I’ve just done a quick trawl of the internet and found the four writing competitions listed below with a ‘war’ theme.
- Mardibooks First World War Centenary Short Story Competition – winners will be published in an anthology and up to 12 entrants will receive feedback on their stories. Word count 1,200 to 5,000. Closing date 29th November, 2013. Entry is FREE.
- Bard and Muse War Poetry Competition – prize money is currently under review and the closing date is March 24, 2014. Line count: 40
- Tower Theatre First World War Play Writing Competition – closing date is September 27th, 2013 – so you need to get your skates on! The winning play will be performed in London in November 2014.
- Curry Mallet First World War Short Story Competition – this competition is not yet open for entries but watch the website or use the contact form on there, to get more details. But this gives you plenty of time to do some research!
Also, don’t forget all the opportunities for magazine articles with a nostalgia or unusual factual slant.
Why not pick up your pen and have a go?
Remember all those men who gave their lives in muddy, wet, stinking trenches so that we might live in peace.
- Harrogate’s Lessons from the First World War (weayorkshireandhumbertutorblog.wordpress.com)
- News story: One year to go to First World War centenary (gov.uk)
- The poppy: still a potent symbol after all these years (telegraph.co.uk)