We’re really pleased to announce a major initiative for next year, a big plan we’ve been developing over the last 12 months or so. July 2011 will see the inaugural BSSP Short Story Festival, ShortStoryVille : a day-long celebration of the short story in its many wonderful guises. Our 2011 awards ceremony will be the final event of the festival. Part of the day will see and art exhibiton and animated film made by students from 2 Bristol schools based on 2 stories we have previously published.
We’re really excited about this development- it’s a wonderful opportunity to bring the dynamic world of the short story to young people, encouraging them to participate in it in a really creative way. As the writers we publish will work directly with the students it, also, enables us to offer the writers the chance to interact with readers directly, see how their writing is perceived and witness it trigger new creative works.
We piloted the schools’ project in July 2010 with an exhibition of artwork by students at Henbury School in Bristol inspired by Miranda Lewis’ story ‘Ground’, published in our first anthology. The exhibition was held at Arnolfini arts centre. Miranda says about the project- “That a story of mine should live and breathe in this way once it has left my piece of paper and gone into the world is an extraordinary privilege.'”
There will be plenty of other events happening at ShortStoryVille next year including interviews, discussions and readings showcasing the hugely diverse and effervescent short story world. The day will conclude with the 2011 Bristol Short Story Prize awards ceremony. We will update as and when events are confirmed. We are aiming to make this an annual event and are really grateful to Arts Council England and Bristol City Council for their funding help which has enabled us to get plans for the inaugural ShortStoryVille off the ground.