Refugee story takes top Dan Davin award


Talented young writer Hannah Lobb has won the Dan Davin young writer award for short stories.

The 17-year-old James Hargest pupil took out the top prize at a ceremony at the Community Trust of Southland on Friday night for her entry about a family of refugees in a war-torn country.

Judge Owen Marshall said the entries in the youth category had been of high quality and reflected the characteristics of enthusiastic young writers.

Mr Marshall said Hannah's story used an excellent first-person narrative and good use of direct quotes. "This is a very successful piece of writing and a worthy winner," he said.

Hannah said she had written the skeleton of the story back in year 10 and had been inspired on a school project about refugees.

The story was not set in a particular country but loosely based around Jordan and Pakistan, she said.

She was "stoked" with the win and was pretty sure her parents were as well, she said.

The open award was won by Wellington-based writer Wes Lee for his story Home Movies.

Mr Lee also picked up third place and a highly commended award.

None of the open award winners was able to attend the ceremony.

A total of 55 entries were received in the young writer category and 40 in the open category.

Dan Davin young writer award: Hannah Lobb, James Hargest College, The Voice of a Young Refugee 1; Logan Edgar, Fiordland College, Rolled, 2; Grant Crane, James Hargest College, Waiting To Cross, 3. Highly commended: Emma Greenfield, Verdon College; Chloe Madden, Central Southland College; Max Reeves, Southland Boys' High; Jana McCall, Fiordland College; Anna Goble, James Hargest; Michaela Frengley, James Hargest.

Dan Davin open award: Wes Lee, Home Movies by Wes Lee, 1; Kate Bariletti, Pool Party, 2; Wes Lee, Counting Sheep, 3. Highly commended: Mark Johnstone, Left Luggage; Wendy Craig, The Colour of Paua; Wes Lee, Tiny Tears; Michael Botur, Gutless.

The Southland Times