This Year’s Competition

The theme for the 2015 competition is:

A story set in New Zealand around the time of the First World War.

Events can be real or imagined, but the story should capture what it was like for people in New Zealand while others were serving overseas as soldiers, nurses, ambulance staff, or volunteers.

The story could be about what happened in schools or your local area at the time. It could be about a conscientious objector, attending a peace rally, farewelling troops, or creating a war memorial. Or it could be about anything else that happened in New Zealand because of the war.

Entries close on Monday July 6th. The winner will be announced on Monday August 3rd. It is not possible to reply to all entries (we get hundreds) but when the winner is announced we will notify all those writers who were shortlisted.

For more details, including judging criteria and an entry form, see here.

The Elsie Locke Trust welcomes feedback from schools and students on the competition, especially topics (suggestions for future topics are welcome) and timing (which is constrained by publication dates for the School Journal). Please send your comments to 

You can read the winning entries from previous years here.