Sunday, 31 October 2010

Jura Challenges Writers to Compose Short Story in 1984 Minutes

Like writing? Like whisky? Then you might be interested in this...

Jura malt whisky is reviving the Jura Lodge as a writer's retreat for one weekend only with a riveting offer for the UK's creative writing community.

Jura is offering one budding author the chance to stay at the island's exclusive Jura Lodge and compose a short story based on the island. There is one catch! Writers will only have 1984 minutes to compose their story, in keeping with the name of the George Orwell masterpiece which was penned on the island more than 60 years ago.

To win the competition, writers are being asked to submit the first 300 words of their proposed short story. There are only two criteria. First, the narrative of the short story must take place on the island itself. Second, the story should have a link to one of the many myths and legends about Jura.

For thousands of years, good fortune and mystery has enriched this tiny island, from the creation of its dominating scenery to the rumours of witches, prophecies and the graves of the Knights Templar. The rich bank of stories can be found here.

One lucky winner will have a chance to soak up the sounds, sights and flavour of Jura before setting to work in the Jura Lodge. The winner will then have 1984 minutes in which to complete a short story. The finished product will be published on Jura's website as part of a compendium of short stories, essays and poetry as a follow-up to the Spirit of Jura.

Jura distillery manager Willie Cochrane said:

"Jura has a long established literary tradition, so we thought it was about time to revive that tradition. This competition will offer one amateur author the chance to soak up the atmosphere of this great island before applying their inspiration to a short story. There's no shortage of material for our lucky winner on an island which is rich with myths and legends steeped in history."

The short story competition follows in the footsteps of the Jura distillery's partnership with the Scottish Book Trust. In 2006, the two partners established the Jura Malt Whisky Writers' Retreat programme, offering writers space, peace and time in a truly inspirational setting, amid the luxury of the Distillery Lodge. Several leading authors, essayists and poets participated in the programme, including Will Self, Liz Lochhead, Kathleen Jamie, Romesh Gunesekara, John Burnside, Philip Gourevitch and Swetha Prakash. The resulting works were published in a book, the Spirit of Jura, which went on sale last year.

Entry Details

Budding authors should send their entries to Isle of Jura by Friday 31st December 2010. Entrants must register as a Diurach on the Isle of Jura website to enter the competition and submit their Diurach number along with their entry for the purposes of verification.

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