Pupil wins ‘Historical Fiction Competition’

For her beautiful narration titled, “Freedom for all” a Year 7 pupil of Lagos Preparatory & Secondary School (LPSS), Amali Mucheke, has won the London-based “Historical Association’s fiction prize.”

The story, which was based around colonial Nigeria, won her the much-coveted prize for her category.

Amali’s entry was sent to London alongside two others from the school, which are Bethany Okeowo’s, “The maid’s moment” and Kitan Fagbamigbe’s “The queen, the candle and the golden mirror,” and she emerged the winner from all the entries submitted by students from across the world.

According to the organisers, “one of the key attributes of historical fiction is that it has a convincing setting in a past time and place, and students can set their stories in any period or place in the past, so the story can fit in with and extend any historical topic they may be studying.”

Head of History Department, LPSS, Mrs. Lesley Barrett, who spearheaded the school’s involvement in the international competition, said the competition is a yearly event open to all students from Year 5 to Year 9 (ages 9-14), but limited to three entries per school.

Amali will receive a cash prize and historical association paper weight while LPSS will receive a free year’s membership of the asociation. Discussions are in progress to publish Amali’s story, she said.

On what the judges looked out for, Barrett said, “The assessment was based on historical accuracy, even down to the choice of names characters are given and any props additional to the historical setting; a riveting read with a good plot; a convincing story; use of historical knowledge to feed the plot, context and character.

Others are, “Effective use of historical vocabulary and literary conventions, including where dialogue is included in the story; creative and interesting perspectives of story-telling.”

“This success is evidence of what we can achieve when we work as a team. This success comes on the heels of Arshiya’s success two years ago. Arshiya’s historical fiction entry was published by Quaramo Publishing in 2017,” Barrett added.

The mother of the young author, Mrs. Anne Mucheke, while commending the History and English Departments of the school for their accurate teaching and tender care, stressed, “We are very pleased, grateful to God and thankful for the school and community support.”

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