Budding writers are being given a chance to share their Essex stories and see their work in print - together with a performance at the Essex County Council-sponsored Essex Book Festival.
If you like writing or just want to have a go at writing, then an Arts Council-funded creative writing project, Essex Belongs To Us, could be right up your street.
Working with Essex Libraries and Essex's Cultural Diversity team, the project's organisers see it as a way of developing creative skills and creating writing opportunities. One of the end products will be an exciting Essex Belongs To Us book featuring writers' work.
Malcolm Burgess, Project Manager, said: “We've based the project around the theme of Essex and its infinite variety. Essex represents a microcosm of the entire country – urban Essex, rural Essex, suburban Essex; all are part of the county's fascinating make-up.
“Quiet and peaceful Essex. Bustling and dynamic Essex. On-the-edge Essex. Famous, even infamous, Essex. We're asking people to give us their own word picture of the county. Essex as you see it, past, present or even future.
“Some of us are long-term residents, others are newer arrivals and may have stories about our journeys getting here.
“Whether it's fiction or non-fiction, prose or poetry, we want to hear about your Essex and how Essex belongs to you.”
Cllr Anne Brown, Essex County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for Libraries, added: “Everybody has their own story to tell about their experience of Essex and this is the perfect opportunity to put that down on paper.
“These events not only allow people to share their views on the county, but will also result in a book that will offer readers a timeless snapshot of modern day Essex. I look forward to reading the wide variety of entries.”
The final deadline for work is 1st November 2016. The project is open to all writers aged 16 + who live in Essex. More information about how to enter is on www.essexbelongstous.org. Here writers can also check out writing tips from well-known Essex authors like Martina Cole, Rachel Lichtenstein, Lee Rourke and Martin Newell.