Do you have a short story you’re burning to tell?

Rosemary Goodacre

A little over a year ago we lost a dear friend when Rosemary Goodacre passed away suddenly. For some of us Rosemary wasn’t just a writing colleague but also a valued friend with whom we spent time in various places. At conferences, as a flat-mate, she was a joy though it was sometimes difficult to keep tabs on her as she had a habit of wandering off on her own, usually on a mission. Our regular Saturday writing retreats would almost always see her arriving last and in a flurry. Lunches and afternoon teas featured in our programme as well and I’ll never forget the week-long writing retreat in Ramsgate when we ‘lost’ her several times. All this seemed to be at odds with her own writing which was meticulously researched (she was the author of WW1 sagas) and a joy to read. At the time of her passing, her third book in The Derwent Chronicles series had just been published.

Rosemary didn’t confine herself to novels. She was a keen short story writer, widely published and winning several competitions. It is to this we turned when seeking a way of honouring our friend. So, here it is, The Friends of Rosemary Goodacre Short Story Competition. All proceeds will go to Rosemary’s favourite charity, Spadework

About the Competition

1500 words maximum
Theme: Friendship
Each entry costs £7.50


1st £150.00
2nd £100.00
3rd £50.00 

Entries open 1st November 2021
Entries close midnight 31st March 2022
Please see entry details below

Our Main Judge

Vivien Brown

Vivien gave up her job in finance when she gave birth to IVF twins and started writing instead, winning the annual Mail on Sunday ‘Best Opening to a Novel’ competition in 1993 and reaching the shortlist again three years later. She has since sold 150 short stories to UK women’s magazines and written more than 250 articles for childcare magazines, based on her subsequent highly rewarding career introducing the magic of books to the under-fives and their families through the Sure Start and Bookstart programmes.

She became a creative writing tutor in the evenings and contributed a regular column to Writers’ Forum magazine that followed the ups and downs of her writing life. She has also had a book about ‘cracking’ cryptic crosswords published, and several humorous children’s poems included in school anthologies.

Now established as a successful novelist, Vivien has had six women’s contemporary novels published, all with domestic drama and family relationship themes. Vivien is a fellow of the Society of Women Writers and Journalists where she oversees competitions and social media, and a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association. In 2020, she judged the Nottingham Writers’ Club ‘Home’ short story competition and was one of three judges for the Time and Tide ‘Brilliant Women’ Writing Competition for high school students. Away from writing, Vivien is a doting grandmother, watches and occasionally takes part in TV quiz shows, is an avid reader and reviewer of women’s fiction, and enjoys the challenge of both solving and compiling cryptic crosswords.

The Charity

Spadework is a charity, based near West Malling in Kent, which supports its beneficiaries to be more independent, less isolated and to live happier, healthier, and more fulfilling lives.  

Through the many on – site activities, we help our Trainees (adults with learning and other disabilities) to be more independent and prepared for life outside their family and Spadework. By feeling the value of doing a good job, being part of something bigger than themselves and playing an active part in the community our Trainees have an increased sense of self-worth, belonging and purpose.  

We also have a Farm Shop and Garden Centre that are open to the public. 7 days a week. All the profits go to support the charity.  

You can find out more about Spadework at or by following us on Facebook.

Entry Details

Send your email entry to FORGCOMP@GMAIL.COM with two attachments:

First attachment:

Your story
Maximum 1500 words
Time New Roman size 12 font
One side of page only
Double line spaced and numbered
No headers or footers
Please keep your story to the theme of friendship

Second attachment:

The front sheet to the story containing:
The entrant’s name and contact details
Title of story and wordcount
*Ensure the name used is the same as entered on the bank payment.
Your email entry will be acknowledged
An email acknowledgement will be sent

Send payment to our competition account c/o:

Elaine Everest
Account number: 08389897
Sort code: 60-83-71
In the reference line please add your name so we can cross reference entries.


*The organisers reserve the right to refuse entries that do not meet the rules of this competition or are deemed inappropriate.

The long list of entries will be drawn up by ‘The friends of Rosemary Goodacre’ consisting of Elaine Everest, Catherine Burrows, Natalie Kleinman, Francesca Capaldi, Elaine Roberts, Ann West.


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