Walking among trees heals hearts and minds

That is what more than 100 people revealed through making submissions on the theme of “Healing Trees” to the 2022 Urban Tree Festival writing competition.  Our volunteer judges have selected their Top 24 submissions, that we have published on the Urban Tree Festival website  – who would be in your shortlist?

Chris Cuninghame

Sarah Wheeler

Challenged to write about “Healing Trees” in 250 words or under we received more than 100 amazing entries of poems and stories. The theme of “Healing Trees” was set by our previous winners: Chris Cuninghame for poetry and Sarah Wheeler for prose.  They chose the theme as they felt it was pertinent to these challenging times and wanted entrants to reveal “the power of trees to heal themselves and us, to contribute to well-being and to sustain eco-systems.”

They also volunteered to be judges in this year‘s competition joined by Anita Roy (poetry) and NG Bristow (prose); together they tackled the task of reading all 100+ submissions and scoring them and selecting the Top 24.

Sarah commented on how tough a task it was: “There were so many good pieces there, it really was hard to choose (my longlist of stories was 19!)”.

So now it’s your turn, who would be in your shortlist of 12?   You will find out who the judges chose on May 7 as their shortlist of 12 – these pieces will be published in CANOPY a limited edition chapbook, edited by Chris Bestwick and illustrated by Alban Low, that will go on sale during the Festival. The revenue from sales will go to supporting future Urban Tree Festival writing competitions. 

El Rhodes

Like to join an online workshop on nature writing?  El Rhodes, a runner-up last year, and a shortlister in the festival’s inaugural writing competition in in 2020, is running her ever-so-popular Writing Wood Words at 2pm on Thursday 18 May – more details and how to book here

You can meet the authors of the shortlisted pieces in this years’ competition  in our online WRITE ABOUT TREES showcase event on the final day of the Urban Tree festival – 5pm Sunday 22 May  – book your place here

Copies of CANOPY will be on sale shortly from the Festival bookshop, and you can book tickets for all the events in the Festival programme from here

All about walking blog posting is unpredictable – if it’s raining biblical downpours then a blog post is more likely to appear, in most other weather conditions we are out walking and not blogging on a keyboard…..

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