Penicuik teenager writes winning short story inspired by her younger brother

Fourteen year old Chloe Aitken from Penicuik has won a creative writing competition, held by Crieff Hydro Family of Hotels, with a short story about her little brother.

Friday, 30th April 2021, 6:00 am
Chloe Aitken from Penicuik, with little brother Charlie.

The budding author penned a short story called ‘My Brother the Superhero’ for the competition and won the 12-14 age category.

Chloe’s story will not only feature within a limited edition bedtime storybook, available at all eight hotels in the Crieff Hydro Family, but it will also be brought to life in an exclusive illustration from artist Jon Bishop, also known as The Grey Earl.

The story is a tribute to Chloe’s brother Charlie who has autism and lives life to the fullest, filled with love and laughter.

Chloe Aitken at Crieff Hydro Hotel.

Jon’s work has a distinct illustrative style and warm sense of humour and he’s looking forward to getting to work on the drawings. He said: “I used to draw superheroes a lot when I started out as an illustrator, so I can’t wait to revisit those ideas and it will be a real privilege to bring life to Chloe’s words and illustrate Charlie as a superhero.”

The panel of independent judge authors – John Bray, Helen Grant and Susy McPhee – selected with help from Strathearn Arts, helped narrow down more than 300 entries from across the UK to pick 30 stories for the book and just three winners to have their creative tale illustrated.

Author Helen added: “This story absolutely stood out as being full of heart. Chloe talks about her brother Charlie, and all the positive things he brings to life.

"I like the fact that this story begins and ends with the concept of Charlie as a superhero. Chloe deftly describes her impressions of life with her brother and it was a story I kept thinking about.”

Work will begin shortly to create the book for summer and if restrictions allow, shortlisted entries will be welcomed to a Mini Book Festival at Crieff Hydro Hotel in July.

Nic Oldham, head of customer and commercial at Crieff Hydro Family of Hotels, said: “We were so impressed with the creativity and imagination of the children who entered our competition which visitors will be able to see for themselves in the storybook when it arrives at our hotels.

"Thank you again to everyone who entered and special congratulations to Chloe for being crowned our 12-14 age category winner.”​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​