The TCN/FRASER short story competition winners

And the winners are...

Before we reveal our winners, a big thank you to everyone who entered our first ever TCN/FRASER Short Story Competition this summer under the theme: When Life Is Your Short Story.

To say the subject matter, styles and formats of entries were varied, would be an understatement.
We received stories from authors of many nationalities recounting tales of romance, drama, laugh-out-loud comedy and a number of very touching and personal accounts. And every single story, in its own way, reflected a little of what life is really like when working onboard a yacht.

There were many stories our panel of 5 Judges felt were worthy of note but in the end we had to decide on our 3 winners.

So without any further ado, here are our three winners in ascending order:

Third Prize

”Every sailors best friend – a leatherman” 
Sponsored by  MSOS– Medical Support Offshore.

Providing comprehensive medical support and training worldwide.

Plus the new FRASER Eco-friendly insulated 1l water bottle.

Dear Diary

By Georgia Rex

From the grey, bustling streets of London where her daily highlight may have been a pastie from Greggs Bakery to decorating Christmas trees in Mexico and savoring wagyu beef, Georgia Rex can’t quite believe the life she is enjoying today.

Why the Jury loved it

“This was a nicely written piece of work filled with energy and character. We wish it had been a little longer – we were interested to know how she came to choose yachting and to have heard more about her “soul sisters and brothers”. But that was another reason we enjoyed this story – we found ourselves wanting to know more!!”

I can’t believe I am one of the winners! One of my goals at the moment is to really try and push myself out of my comfort zone, which is why I entered this competition, as it is miles out of my comfort zone. I studied English Literature/ Language at Sixth Form and really enjoyed it, but never took it any further after. Thank you so much!

Georgia Rex

Second Prize

A beautiful collection of environmentally sustainable cleaning and personal care products donated by our Sponsor EcoStore. Safer products for you, your family and our world.

Plus the new FRASER Eco-friendly insulated 1l water bottle.

Birthday Cake

By Stephen Crosthwaite

The owner beckoned me over and as I leant down, he shouted in my ear, over the very loud music, the screaming and laughter, “Ok steward we’ll have the cake now please”. And that’s when it all goes a little bit wrong…

Why the Jury loved it

“Every one of us laughed out loud as we read this entry. It is a nicely observed, well written, if slightly exaggerated, little vignette. It would have been nice to have learned more about the narrator and some of the characters involved but a great read and a funny incident well told.”

I’m chuffed to bits..! The Owner does not exist but the core of it is a true story and it did happen on a yacht quite a few years ago to a friend of mine that was the Steward onboard. I’ve embellished it a little bit and added in some “poetic licence” and another character, but pretty much it’s all true-ish. I am sure many of the characters (crew) will recognise themselves..! I think I will be using it in a book about yachting that I will write when I retire…:-)

Stephen Crosthwaite

First Prize

A Year’s Subscription to MASTERCLASS with over 85 video masterclasses streamed on hundreds of topics from cooking, leadership, business, photography, writing, acting, directing and much more all taught by the world’s best.

PLUS – a signed copy of ‘Smart Yacht Marketing 101 by Mark Duncan, the yacht industry’s first ever masterclass on what the very best in our industry are doing today to better source, win and retain clients through marketing that drives better business.

Plus the new FRASER Eco-friendly insulated 1l water bottle.

Wave Splashes To Ashes

By Stephen Wilkins

A chance meeting of a solitary old man and his dog on the dock late one evening leads to a sharing of experiences and some extraordinary connections all of which slowly reveal the old man’s tender plan for his future.

Why the Jury loved it

 “The author managed to create a strong emotional connection. One could understand and feel for the characters, in particular the older sailor, and feel the bond that was created between them even in such a short period of time. One even felt for the dog…”

Waking this morning a good mug of tea was my priority, next checking on the weather, but seeing that I had emails I was surprised to find there was notification that I had won the short story competition, what a wonderful way to start the day. My story of Hans and Golden Wind still rests clearly in my mind, that chance meeting in Brest France at the Port du Chateau marina may possibly have been that the planets were aligned and meant to happen. As an amateur writer, I liken it to photography, because anyone, professional or novice can take an amazing photo, but you must push the shutter button, and like photography any writer must put pen to paper and capture their thoughts, emotions and feelings, I hope I achieved that when I wrote Wave splashes to ashes, wind gusts to dust. Many thanks to all those at The Crew Network and Fraser for this great initiative, but equally to all the other enthusiastic writers who submitted their stories, please keep writing!!

Stephen Wilkins

And A Special Mention Goes To:

Always A Horizon

By Andrew Kelly

“He sat on the stern and folded paper stars.” An intriguing and delicately written story of love, separation and a horizon that is always ahead.

Why the Jury loved it

“The scoring for the top 5 or 6 entries was very very close indeed. This entry missed out by just one or two points but it resonated with some of our jury so much that we felt it deserved a special mention. A career onboard a yacht, or any sea vessel, is one of the most rewarding and exciting anyone can have. But like anything in life, there can be moments of missing. We felt the author tapped into one such moment with delicacy and poignancy that stays with you long after reading his story.

Thank you so much for mentioning my story. I am very new to writing so it really means a lot. When I was writing this story I was thinking of all the people throughout the industry carrying an invisible burden. Those trying to get through the days with a smile on their face that might disappear as soon as they are alone or below decks. We are never alone and there are more folks around who understand than you might think. Talk to people and keep working towards that horizon. I even got a tattoo just recently to remind me of that fact every day.”

Andrew Kelly

TCN and FRASER would like to thank our sponsors for helping support our first ever SHORT STORY COMPETITION and our panel of judges for taking the time out to read and review all entries.

We extend a special thanks to Dr Marika Taishoff, Director of the MBA Program at the International University of Monaco (IUM) – her reviews were both insightful and, as someone with a perspective from outside of the yachting domain, absolutely refreshing.

OUR SPONSORS

Ecostore

Ecostore provide a wide-range of cleaning and body care products which are safe for the oceans.
Using  biodegradable ingredients, carboNZero certified manufacturing and sugar plastic packaging, they are constantly working on ways to save energy and resources, and reduce waste.

MSOS

MSOS provides comprehensive worldwide medical support for an extensive range of clients based on land, sea and air.  They provide medical kits, medical training, telemedical support and the Themis telemedicine monitor.

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