SLUSH PILE CHALLENGE October 2021 Results



Angharad Kowal Stannus of Kowal Stannus Agency set the October 2021 Slush Pile Challenge.




Angarad wanted an excerpt and a one-sentence synopsis for any novel age 5-8, 8-12, 10+ or Young Adult pertaining to the subject of love. It could have been in relation to any kind of love: romantic love; love of your country or homeland; friendship; the love between a child and parent; the love between a child and their dog (or cat, or elephant); love of nature, etc. The excerpt could be any part of the novel as long as it convinced Angharad of the underlying emotion or relationship and ideally made her feel something. The excerpt could have been as short as a few paragraphs but no longer than a chapter. THE NOVEL HAD TO BE COMPLETE.



We received 37 entries from members across the British Isles and Europe for this competition. Angharad read all of the submissions. This is what Angharad told us when announcing the results:


“Thank you to everyone who took the time to enter the Slush Pile Challenge this November. The entries were wonderful: full of great story ideas, excellent writing, and sensitivity.


Winner – The Hedgewitch by Sally Tomson. Full of passion and atmosphere, I loved what I read of The Hedgewitch and wished I could have read the whole manuscript then and there. The Author immediately pulled me in to the world of 17th Century England during the English Civil War and made me sympathize with their characters. Full of romance, danger and emotion, The Hedgewitch had everything I look for in a book.


Second Place – Circus Tricks by Clare Hudman. Circus Tricks pulled at my heart-strings from the first sentence. The story of Ned and his family – in particular his love for his baby nephew – felt very real to me and I was right there with Ned. My brief was to send a story about love and make me feel something and Circus Tricks definitely did that.


Honourable Mentions:


Crossing The Bifrost by John Durant.


Secrets of The Monsoon Forest by Chrissy Sturt.


Hettie Stone by Charlie Baudry.


The Scurry by Louisa Mclennan.


The Kickfast Christmas Ninjas by Shaun Stevenson.


ToothSnatcher and the War of Winter by Hazel Hitchins.


The emotion in all of the stories was fantastic, but it was the stories that had a great plot or idea behind them as well that really stood out to me. Thank you for sharing your work with me, I really appreciate it.


All the best, Angharad.”




Congratulations to Sally Tomson from all of us at Words & Pictures. We hope you are well on your way towards getting your writing published.


Well done to Clare Hudman for gaining second place in this competition.


Also, well done to John Durrant, Chrissy Sturt, Charlie Baudry, Louisa Mclennan, Shaun Stevenson and Hazel Hitchins for gaining an honourable mention.


Thanks to everyone who entered. Keep writing and we hope you will be encouraged to try your hand at appropriate competitions.



Angharad Kowal Stannus set up KSA in order to be able to spend more time with Authors and Illustrators on the development and execution of their work. As an American based in the UK, Angharad prides herself on having in-depth knowledge of the British, American and International markets as well as a background not only in Agenting, but in Publishing and Licensing too.


Angharad spent the first ten years of her career at Simon & Schuster in NY as Rights Director, selling International, Film &Television, and Merchandise Rights. In 2008, she set up and headed the London office of a major NYC Literary Agency, working across a wide range of Fiction, Nonfiction, YA, and Children’s titles.


Founded by Angharad Kowal Stannus in 2017, KSA is a UK-based full-service Literary and Illustration Agency dedicated to serving the needs of its clients across books, licensing and entertainment. Representing Authors and Illustrators of Fiction and Nonfiction for the Adult and Children’s markets, its focus is on maximizing its Clients’ sales potential across multiple income streams and working together to support creative, inventive and dynamic work.




Elaine Cline has been a SCBWI member for over six years and loves to write picture books, chapter books and middle-grade. She loves writing about food. She lives by the sea and has a dog and a cat. Elaine is a member of the Words & Pictures' editorial team, managing The Slush Pile Challenge for writers. Connect with Elaine on Twitter: @elaineccline


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