A story of Scotland: girl scoops top prize

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A budding Banchory writer is enjoying national literary success after penning an award-winning Scottish-themed short story.

Banchory Academy leaver, Alexandra Lane, was chosen as the overall winner in the prose category of the Robert Louis Stevenson national creative writing competition.

Alex was put forward for the competition by Banchory Academy’s head of English, Lyn Forman.

After entering the competition in March, Alex, who was studying for her Advanced Higher English exam at the time, was invited to a creative writing workshop in Edinburgh.

Her English teacher, Lyn Forman, said she had found the workshop, run by Scottish author James Robertson, very enjoyable and beneficial.

The workshop was followed by an awards ceremony, which Alex attended accompanied by her mother, Clare.

The big win came as a complete surprise, as she sat among the other entrants and heard her piece read out.

Entrants to the competition, held in conjunction with Napier University, were required to write a short story of no more than 1500 words, based around a Scottish theme.

Alex’s winning story entitled ‘Hidden Skin’ features the mythological Scottish creatures, selkies.

According to myth and legend, selkies are said to live as seals in the sea, but shed their skin to become human on land.

The former Banchory pupil’s entry won the George Addis trophy and £100 for her school.

She also won a selection of books for herself.

Alex intends to go on to study English and Creative Writing at university later this year.

Another Deesider, Maddie Wood of Cults Academy, was among the highly commended young authors.