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PREVIOUS WINNERS



THE WINNER OF THE CATERPILLAR STORY PRIZE 2019 IS HEATHER F. REID!


Many thanks to all of you who sent your wonderful stories for children in to our judge, Kelly McCaughrain. And congratulations to this year's winners, Heather F. Reid and Jo Withers.  


DAVID MCQUEEN'S GREEN MACHINE by HEATHER F. REID (1ST PRIZE) 

‘Oh my word, I can hardly believe it! It has been an ambition of mine to win either the poetry or short story prize in The Caterpillar.’
Heather F. Reid

Heather F. Reid
 lives near Perth, Scotland with her rescue dog Flo and her two crazy cats. Her poems for children have been commended in The Caterpillar Poetry Prize on three occasions, and also in The Manchester Writing for Children Prize and the Yorkmix Poetry Competition 2019. In 2009 her poem ‘Chinese Whispers’ won the Plough Prize for Children. Her writing for adults has featured in a number of anthologies and has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4. She has swum with sharks and been chased by an elephant, but mostly stays at home making up poems and stories.


Judge’s comment:
‘I loved this charming piece,’ says McCaughrain. ‘It works as a story and a poem and is a pleasure to read aloud. A cascade of delightful images, language and rhythm, as well as narrative and a relatable character, mean there’s something here for readers of every age.’



INBOX by JO WITHERS (2ND PRIZE) 

‘I am completely gobsmacked and utterly thrilled to hear that “Inbox” reached second place! I’m so grateful to your wonderful judge Kelly McCaughrain for choosing my story, and to Rebecca and Will at
The Caterpillar. You do so much to champion children’s literature and I’m honoured to be involved again.’ Jo Withers


Jo Withers is from South Australia. She writes stories and poetry for children and adults and has had work published in print and websites around the world. She is also the author of the middle-grade science fiction adventure 5 Simple Steps to Saving Planet Earth. She won The Caterpillar Story Prize back in 2017.

Judge’s comment:
Funny, snappy and clever, this one was pure reading enjoyment.’

You can read about the winners and the winning stories in the Irish Times



STORIES BY THE FOLLOWING WRITERS WERE ALSO COMMENDED

Jessamy Corob Cook
is an actress and writer, currently studying an MA in writing for young people at Bath Spa University. She has previously won second place in The Caterpillar Story Prize. Her short story for adults, ‘Teeth’, inspired by the Russian folk tale of Baba Yaga, is available in the anthology Skull and Pestle, published by World Weaver Press, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

Judy-Meg Kennedy, a radio producer from Dublin, enjoys writing radio drama and stories for children. She is lucky to have an excellent nine year old editor (who also happens to be her daughter …) 

Sophie Lewis is a writer, maker and creative director living in North London with her husband, two daughters and a rather fat grey cat. She’s always been interested in concepts, words and pictures. She spends her time writing for brands, and for herself. Her other huge love is designing and making clothes. She has a teeny tiny brand that combines her love of clothes and words called SIM3ALLENKEY and a personal writing site,  ‘A Wide Sort of Way’ where she experiments with ideas.

Ciara O’Connor
is a lecturer in Dundalk Institute of Technology. She writes middle-grade fiction in her spare time and she has had previous stories published in The Caterpillar. She lives by the sea with her husband, her two sons and a dog who occasionally gets mistaken for a squirrel.

Kate O’Neil lives on the Northern Illawarra coast of New South Wales, between the mountains and the sea – an inspiring place to write poetry and stories. She loves The Caterpillar magazine and is delighted to have work recognised by it. Her collection of poems for performance, Cool Poems, was published in 2018 by Triple D Press 



ABOUT THE CATERPILLAR STORY PRIZE

This annual award is given to the best story (of no more than 1,500 words) written by an adult for children aged 7–11. The author of the winning story receives €1,000. Second prize this year is a week’s retreat at the 
Tyrone Guthrie Centre

Previous winners include Louise Greig, Jo Withers, Jessamy Corob Cook, Richard J. Jones, Chris Preece, Rebecca Langton and Tom Kelly
.