New Media Writing Prize taking place at BU

The winners of an international competition which recognises innovative and interactive storytelling will be revealed at a Bournemouth University (BU) awards ceremony.

The New Media Writing Prize showcases storytelling designed to be accessed through new media devices – with entries comprising anything from poems, films or computer animation, with audience interaction.

Winners will be revealed at an awards ceremony at BU on the evening of Wednesday 21 January, which is free to attend and open to all.

This year’s competition received more than 100 entries from around the world, with shortlisted entries from the likes of the USA, Australia and Egypt.

Dr James Pope, BA English Framework Leader at BU and competition director for the New Media Writing Prize, said: “Our fifth anniversary has seen the largest numbers of entries and the most fascinating range of styles and approaches to new-media storytelling.

“The judges will have a hard time deciding on the winners, but whatever the outcome, this competition showcases and celebrates the best in digital writing worldwide.”

The winner of the New Media Writing Prize will receive £1,000, donated by if:book UK.

There is also a student category, with the winner receiving a 3-month paid internship with Bournemouth-based e-learning company Unicorn Training, worth £3,000.

The awards ceremony will take place at Bournemouth University’s Talbot Campus and is free to attend.

It runs from 6pm and will also feature talks from leading names in the new media industry, writer and founder of if:book UK Chris Reade and artist-researcher Maria Mencia.

There will be drinks, nibbles and the chance to network after the event.

Find out more and book free tickets for the awards ceremony

Winners of New Media Writing Prize revealed at BU


A sitcom based around conversations with voice-activated app Siri, a multi-media project on gang warfare in El Salvador and an interactive poetry website were named winners at the New Media Writing Awards.

The international competition, run by Bournemouth University’s Media School, showcases innovative story-telling designed to be accessed through new media devices.

The winners were announced at an awards ceremony at Bournemouth University, with prizes awarded to an overall winner, a people’s choice winner decided by an online public vote, and a student winner.

Esmeralda Kosmatopoulos was named overall winner, receiving a prize of £1,000.

Her entry, Siri and Me, consisted of a virtual sitcom made up of conversations between her and the voice-activated phone application.


Esmeralda Kosmatopoulos receiving the New Media Writing Prize award via Skype, for her virtual sitcom Siri and Me

Esmeralda, who lives in New York, received her award over Skype, saying: “I’m really excited and happy,”

“The way Siri talks to me now may be the way my fridge will start talking to me in the future. You will start to have relationships with your appliances.”

The student prize was won by David Devanny from Falmouth University, for his project Orange Sweatshirt.

His interactive site generates poems, which readers can then alter by changing words, the tone, and format used.

David Devanny

Student prize winner David Devanny (right), with Peter Phillips of Unicorn Training

David, whose prize was a three-month paid internship with e-learning company Unicorn Training said: “It’s amazing. The whole thing has been a very good experience, and I’m very shocked and surprised.

“I like the idea of giving over control to the reader as much as possible, so I try to make a point of doing that in my work.”

The winners were decided by a panel of judges which included Dan Franklin, Digital Publisher at Random House; Chris Meade, founder of if:Book UK, which explores the future of books; and  Joanna Ellis, Associate Director of The Literary Platform.

Chris Meade said: “What I love about this competition, and this year more than ever, is it’s about a new kind of writer. They are creating things for different platforms and not just writing for a book.”

There was also a People’s Choice Award, decided by an online public vote, with a prize of £250.

Ann Luce and Jim Pope

Ann Luce, one of the creators of People’s Choice award winner The Engineer, with event organiser Jim Pope.

Over 1,000 votes were received and the award was won by Mathew Charles, Juan Passarelli and Ann Luce for their multi-media project The Engineer, which follows El Salvador’s only forensic pathologist and looks at gang crime in the country.

As well as the winners being announced, the awards ceremony also featured talks from leading new media figures, including Rob Sherman, author of Random House’s first fully interactive fiction Black Crown, and Julian McCrae, creator of multi-media thriller The Craftsman.

They spoke about their work and gave tips for students in the audience who wanted to go into digital storytelling, including quickly making the reader care about your piece and characters, and knowing the genre and audience expectations.

 Andy Campbell, who has created Dreaming Methods – a digital scrapbook for authors featuring animation and visual imagery alongside written pieces – also spoke at the awards ceremony.

He said: “It is really a fantastic event and a great showcase for this type of work.

“It’s a nice chance to hopefully influence some up-and-coming writers and encourage people to give it a go.”

The New Media Writing Prize is now in its fourth year and organiser and judge Jim Pope said it was bigger and better than ever.

“I think it has been the most successful awards ceremony we have run, the biggest and most varied range of entries and audience,” said Jim, who is also Course Leader for BA (Hons) English at Bournemouth University.

“The quality of the entries was fantastic and it was so hard to choose a winner because they were all so different, it was like choosing between chalk and cheese.”

New Media Writing Prize 2013 now open for entries


The fourth annual New Media Writing Prize is now open for entries, with a £1,000 top prize.

The international competition showcases story-telling specifically created to be accessed through new media devices, such as computers, hand-held tablets and mobile phones.

Entries could be anything from a short story, novel, documentary or poem using words, images, film or animation with audience interaction.

The competition is open to all, with a prize for the overall winner of £1,000, donated by if:book UK.

There is also a People’s Choice winner, chosen by readers through an online vote, who will receive a prize of £250.

Students can also enter, with the student category prize of a 3 month paid internship at Bournemouth-based e-company Unicorn Training.

Competition organiser, Dr James Pope, who is also Programme Coordinator for the BA English programme at BU, said: “This competition attracts the best innovative writing from around the world, and is truly breaking new ground.

“Each year we see terrific work that showcases new-media as the future of storytelling.”

Previous winners have included Hurst – the story of a fictional character unravelling through Twitter and YouTube – and Window, which combined different words, sounds and imagery depending on which categories a reader selected.

The competition, run by Bournemouth University, also aims to provoke discussion and raise awareness of new media writing, the future of the written word and storytelling.

Winning entries will be published on new media web-hub The Literary Platform, the Bournemouth University website and will be showcased at the Awards Ceremony, which will take place at BU on January 22.

The winners will be chosen by a panel of judges including Joanna Ellis, Associate Director at The Literary Platform, Chris Meade, writer and founder of if:book UK and Dan Franklin, Digital Publisher at the Random House Group in the UK.

Dan said: “I’m delighted to be involved with the judging of the New Media Writing Prize again this year: it respects the fact that media is converging, authors are adopting new skills, and writing is changing.”

The deadline for entries is Monday November 25th at 12 noon, and the closing date for student entries is Friday December 13th.

Each entry should be submitted by email to

To see previous winners and enter the competition visit the New Media Writing Prize website.