Explore Learning Writers’ Awards 2020 judged by Greg James

September 25, 2020

Explore Learning Writer's Awards 2020 banner with Greg James

Everyone has a talent; anyone can be a writer. That’s why we’re so excited to announce that our Explore Learning Writers’ Awards 2020 competition judged by Greg James, has the theme of Hidden Talents.

It’s time to awaken your inner author, as it’s the Writers’ Awards twelfth year of running and the competition is coming to you very soon on the 28th of September 2020.

Explore Learning have encouraged belief in the power of possibility for children Nationwide for the past eighteen years with the Explore Learning Writers’ Awards; for writers to discover their creative writing talents and more of what makes them so great.

2020 has been the year of self-discovery – have you unearthed a hidden talent?

What with lockdown, we’ve all been through a lot this year. However, we’ve also been given the opportunity to spend more time together and find out more about ourselves as people. About what makes us magical.

With ordinary possibility and extraordinary gifts, incredible things can happen.


  • What is the competition about?

This year’s Explore Learning Writers’ Awards commences on the 28th of September. We’re looking for children Nationwide to unleash their imagination and enter their 500-word Hidden Talents themed story online for a chance to win incredible prizes!

Get it back to us by the 28th of October 2020, for the opportunity of your tantalising talent tale to be chosen as the winner by our guest judge!

Need some inspiration? Check out all our free writing resources on creating characters, settings, and dilemmas – everything a good story needs! Still in need of some writing top tips? Check out our writing tips blogs – including guest blogs by previous year judges David Walliams and Alesha Dixon!


  • What are we looking for?

Whilst spelling, punctuation and grammar are of course important, Explore Learning Writers’ Awards were invented to encourage children from across the UK to be creative. We want you to hang up those bugbears that come with trying to perfect a piece of writing and instead let your imagination run wild. We’re not looking for the best spelling bee or the most efficient proof-reader. We’re looking for storytelling talent, a narrative that grips us, and for incredible hidden talent to be discovered by your character!

First comes the idea, then comes the story. Use our inspiration section, top writing tips blogs, or talent generator on our website to generate your ideas, then get writing!


  • Greg James is judging this year’s competition!

Greg has co-written the incredible series, Kid Normal, a laugh-out-loud adventure story of Murph Cooper, who comes to realise that he doesn’t need an extraordinary superpower to be super cool. Here he is talking to us on what he thinks about this year’s competition:

“Hidden Talents is a brilliant theme for this year’s Explore Learning Writers Awards. Whenever I meet young readers, I love finding out what secret skills or knowledge they have. Our characters in the Kid Normal series are full of surprises and I’m always amazed at how wild and fearless our reader’s imaginations are too. My advice for this competition is to let your mind run wild, there’s no such thing as an idea that’s too silly or fantastical. Writing is one of the most enjoyable things you can do with your brain, so… have fun!”

Watch the TV advert for Kid Normal.

Greg understands that talents come in all different shapes and forms, so when we were looking for our Explore Learning Writers’ Awards judge, we couldn’t think of anybody better for this year’s theme, Hidden Talents.

We hope you’re feeling as revved up as we are and that your creative juices are already flowing!


  • What are the prizes?

Need a forum to explore your personal hobby, fulfil your passion, and bring it to life?

Together with the help of Greg James, we will be selecting a winner from KS1, KS2 and KS3. We will then be choosing an overall winner from these 3 finalists.

All of our three Key Stage winners will be receiving a tech bundle! This includes an iPad, Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard as their prize! Alongside £250 each towards their very own experience day!

The overall story writing winner will also win an extra £750 towards an experience day of their choosing. Excitingly, the Explore Learning Writers’ Awards 2020 winner will also be receiving their very own Macbook pro 13″! Plenty of opportunity to never let the creativity end! Don’t forget, the winner will also be awarded £500 for books for their school so that everyone gets to share some new books to read and inspire them to write more!


  • How do I get involved?

Once you’ve written your spectacular 500-word story, you can submit it online by the 28th of October. Good luck!




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