Hagerstown teen Ellie Scrivener was the grand prize winner of the Nora Roberts Young Writers Institute writing contest.
The Young Writers Institute is a special summer workshop held specifically for aspiring teen writers as part of the larger Nora Roberts Writing Institute (NRWI), a two-day writing conference at Hagerstown Community College. HCC held its inaugural institute on Aug. 2 and 3 with more than 100 writers attending a variety of workshops on everything from fiction crafting to publishing and marketing one’s work.
Teen writers who wanted to attend the Young Writers Institute had the option of entering a writing contest for the opportunity to win free tuition to the conference and a $50 Amazon gift card. Entrants were asked to submit an original work of fiction in 1,000 words or less featuring a main character in a critical moment, specifically focusing the character’s back story.
Scrivener, 17, won first place for her short story, “When Embers Die.” Scrivener says that her inspiration for her story came directly from the writing prompt itself.
“I started thinking about back stories and how my own surroundings had influenced me,” said Scrivener. “I’ve had hardships and I’ve had moments where I’ve felt trapped. It took me a long time to realize that those feelings are mostly in your head. Once you move past that idea, you realize that you can do anything. So, I took that idea and incorporated it into my story.”
Scrivener says that her future plans include attending Hagerstown Community College to obtain her associate’s degree and later transferring to Shepherd University to complete her bachelor’s degree. Her ultimate goal is not only be a published author, but be able to fully support herself through writing.
“That’s my dream—I want to be an author, but I want to be able to pay the bills too. Hopefully, I can do both.”
Learn more about NRWI at http://nrwi.hagerstowncc.edu .
Writing contest winner Ellie Scrivener (center) with NRWI keynote speakers and bestselling authors Erica Bauermeister (left) and Sylvia Day.