For young writers

The Orwell Youth Prize

The Orwell Youth Prize is much more than just a prize. We take leading writers and journalists into schools and universities to work with young writers like you. And we have of inspiration on this website – tips on how to write from leading authors, as well as lots of Orwell’s own work.

Find out more about Orwell here.

If you are aged 14 – 18, you can The Orwell Youth Prize. We will provide you with feedback on a draft of your work, before you submit the final entry. All longlisted entrants are invited to the Celebration Day.

If you’d like to get involved or know more, get in touch with Jeremy & Robyn at admin@orwellyouthprize.co.uk

“Entering the Orwell Youth Prize, receiving helpful feedback and incisive critique from the judges, and of course the Celebration Day itself, has given me the confidence to seriously pursue writing as a possible career. I must thank the Orwell Youth Prize for presenting those awarded with a day’s work experience at the offices of The Guardian. The day was conducted by Stephen Armstrong, journalist and author of the acclaimed The Road to Wigan Pier Revisited. It was a valuable opportunity to learn from Stephen’s expertise, as well as to practise writing at the hot-desk. Sifting through breaking news updates to devise a piece within a thirty minute deadline was an absorbing experience – it propelled me out of my comfort zone to write about the unfamiliar.”

Vidya Ramesh, 2015 winner in the Years 12 and 13 category.

Other Opportunities

Below are listed some opportunities which you might be interested in:

The PSA’s Student Video Competition


2017 – “Fake News: Is this the end of facts?”

With more and more of us getting our news from social media, the term ‘fake news’ has grabbed popular consciousness in recent times. This year’s competition aims to examine what fake news is and its consequences.

Hardly a day goes by without President Trump declaring someone guilty of fake news, while others attack him and the rest of the global political class of engaging in this activity. Some fake news is clearly false, but other samples of fake news often contain a grain of truth that leads them to gain greater impact. Often the term is used to attack another person’s different opinion. The term has developed greater significance as we are now living in a time where access to impartial news is arguably more difficult, despite greater access to the internet. More people are getting their news from social media platforms where they may only be communicating with people from similar backgrounds with similar views. Simultaneously we are also seen to be living in the time of the ‘End of Experts’, where expert scientific knowledge is readily discounted. These trends have consequences for our society and democracy and point to a potential future where ‘facts’ in the traditional sense become meaningless.

But, what are the consequences of this trend? Has our political life been damaged by the rise in fake news? How has it affected trust in our system, respect for our leaders and turnout at our elections? Or has fake news always been a part of political discourse, but its just that new technology has given it new life? Or is the rise in fake news a symptom of the so called experts failing to make accurate statements and predictions about the world around us? After all, political scientists failed to predict the outcome of the 2015 & 2017 general elections; the 2016 US Presidential election and the 2016 EU Referendum. Are we, as a society, returning to making judgements on our personal feelings and experiences rather than relying on expert opinion?

There is much fertile territory to explore in his subject and we look forward to your creative responses.

The deadline for entries is 12 noon 30 October 2017.

Please take note that this competition is open to post-16 students who will be studying during the academic year 2017-18. Teams of no less than two and no more than four should submit a video of up to four minutes long. You do not need to use specialist high-tech equipment to make the videos, which can be filmed on smartphones and tablets. However, please do be aware of issues such as sound quality and shaky filming which may detract from the viewing experience.

Entrants are encouraged to think creatively and to adopt a broad approach that challenges dominant assumptions and/or offers new perspectives. Short-listed teams will be invited to a jury meeting at the Houses of Parliament on the afternoon of the 7 November. The winners will have their award presented at the PSA Annual Awards on 5 December in central London and they will have the opportunity to undertake a week’s work placement at the polling agency YouGov, who have kindly sponsored this year’s competition.

For more information and to submit your entry please contact Josh Niderost via: josh.niderost@psa.ac.uk

Click here to view and/or download the 2017 Student Short Video Competition poster