Two mums from Lancashire have beaten hundreds of entries to be shortlisted in this year’s Munch Time children’s story writing competition. Christine Collinson, 36, from Leyland and Sarah Jones, 31 of Lytham St Anne’s now need your vote to win the top prize of £1,000 in the annual search for a budding children’s author.
Both stories celebrate this special sporting year and use the forthcoming Olympic Games as their inspiration. Christine’s story ‘Munch’s Olympic Dream’ and Sarah’s ‘Munch and Friend’s Udderly Fantastic Olympic Day’ can be seen and voted for at www.munchtime.co.uk from now until 22nd July.
Christine, a stay-at – home mum, has entered the Munch Time competition every year since it began in 2009. She said: “I was determined to keep entering until I got noticed – and now I am in shock that I have been! There seemed no better topic for a story in 2012 than the Olympic Games. I wanted to create a fun and inspiring tale where Munch would not only experience the excitement of Olympic sport, but get involved too! Creative writing is my hobby but I would love to write professionally and competitions like this are a great opportunity.”
The competition, by Munch Bunch yoghurts, is in its fourth year and aims to highlight and celebrate the importance of parents bonding with their toddlers and young children over story time and give burgeoning writers the opportunity to shine. The winner won’t be the only one to win a cash prize, their local library will also receive a donation.
Sarah, a part time legal secretary was inspired to create a story for her children Alex, ten and Samuel almost two, to enjoy together. She said: “Wow, I am stunned that my story has been picked and will be up online for everyone to read and vote for!”
In a recent survey of parents in the North West with children under five, Munch Bunch found that 20% have never visited their local library. A further quarter of busy parents said they out-sourced story time with their children to someone else and less than a third read to their little ones daily. Half of the 2000 parents quizzed said they were too tired or busy for story time with their children, and that work came first. Yet, 62% of parents in the North West enjoy making up stories for their children. Child psychologist Dr Richard Woolfson, who has been involved with the ‘Munch Time’ story writing competition for the last three years, says:
“This year’s entries have been of the highest standard. Creating stories is a wonderfully creative and rewarding activity for parents to enjoy with their little ones. Story time with very young children is not just beneficial for their intellectual development, it is a magical opportunity to bond, which even the busiest of parents should make time for.”
Vote now for your favourite Munch Time entry and also receive an opportunity to win a prize at www.munchtime.co.uk. Voting will conclude at midnight on Sunday 22nd July with the winning story to be unveiled early August – watch this space for the announcement!
Fans of Munch Time can also be part of the story writing competition count down excitement on Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/munchtimestory