Well. That was fun.
An absolutely rip-roaring, packed to the seams, to the very rafters, evening of the finest YA writing the UK has to offer. HUGE thanks are due to our wonderful readers – Kim Curran, Mike Lancaster, Laure Eve, Ruth Warburton and Amy McCulloch – and also to lovely James Smythe, who had the frankly brilliant idea of doing a YA special in the first place.
At Speak Easy, we like to play a little game with our authors. (Again, I must express my sadness that Ian vetoed my ‘suits of flames’ dress code last night). We ask you, the audience, to choose a theme. We divide our authors into two teams. We make them write something on said theme in a devilishly short time. And we ask you, the audience to vote for a winner.
Last night, the theme was ‘Jellybean eating porcupines’. (I’m not putting a hyphen anywhere in there. You’ll see.)
The results, unedited, are printed for your records below.
The only sound in the cell was the chattering of Porcupine Personal Assistant™ 3000’s teeth. It had been six short hours since he had tasted the magic of jellybean – and thus his freedom. Bobby, the youngest of the family he served, clumsy little mite he was, had accidentally spilled his sweets on the carpet, and it had been Por-Q-9’s job to tidy them up. Programmed only to ingest the vitamin pills manufactured by his makers, Bad Farmer™, it would never have crossed his mind to eat them. But as his tiny tongue accidentally grazed the sugar crust, it set off a chain reaction of feeling, and before he knew it, he had swallowed the bean. His nerves were still buzzing; his whole circuitry still aflame from the jellybeans. Sugar = freedom, he thought to himself.
The jellybean didn’t know when it had become sentient. You wouldn’t, would you?
[Ian, reading, pauses]
It must be said that the great genius of Team 2’s piece is in the reading, and cannot truly be reproduced here. Regardless – Team One were victorious! Making it Cloke 3 – Ellard 3! I! Am! Very! Excited! About this!
Until next time, challenge fans. And might I say here that that next time will be November 12th. It’s going to be a good one.