YOUNG LAUREATE: Ailie Kerr
AN A LEVEL student from Crownhill has been named as Plymouth's – and the South West's – first Young City Laureate.
Ailie Kerr, 16, won the competition with her short story Kraken Karma.
Author and illustrator Babette Cole announced the winners at the International Book Festival yesterday.
She said that judging the entries had been difficult because of the high standard.
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Ailie said: "I have always wanted to be a writer.
"I try to write serious stories but they always turn out funny."
In her role she will be expected to encourage and inspire other young people to pick up their pens and microphones.
She will be asked to celebrate special events in the city and perform in libraries, schools, festivals and other community events.
Tracey Guiry, director of Cyprus Well, the South West literary development charity, which runs the Young City Laureate scheme, said: "This is a great start for anyone looking to make a career in writing, with mentoring on offer as well as experience of writing and performance."
Ailie won an iPad. Four runners-up – Charlotte Spence, Amy AcAvoy, Josephine Hicks and Mary Buckley – won £50 each. Harry Samuels and Dan Cooper were highly commended and won £100 each.