‘Studying permits you to slide out and in of worlds’: 16-year-old Lancashire creator Nabiha Ali talks inspiration, awards, and hopes for the long run

The outcome, a formidable and transferring piece wealthy intimately and outline entitled Dandelions, was once an enormous luck. Described as “quietly gorgeous” by way of the judges, the piece was once praised for its bright descriptions that learn like a “tale in each sentence”. Evoking deep, textured imagery with each simile and metaphor, Dandelions stood out for its fair purity.

Nabiha’s piece was once duly shortlisted for the award in spite of her last-minute reworkings, incomes her the accolade of being the youngest creator to make the overall lower. Dandelions was once learn aloud at the BBC Radio web site by way of Wildcard Theater Corporate co-founder Maimuna Memon. And, even though Nabiha did not win in any respect, she is aware of that she has accomplished so much.

“Writing has all the time been one thing that has me,” says 16-year-old Nabiha. “I liked studying from an overly younger age – my mom used to get us a whole lot of books so there was once all the time that pastime and when I used to be round 9 I began to increase an pastime in writing myself. I began with little tales and it went from there.

Nabiha Ali

“I really like the truth that you’ll slide out and in of a unique international if you end up studying: you are your self, however you are folks on the similar time, after which you’ll go away and cross to some other international identical to that. ,” she provides. “You’ll select up a brand new e book and be a unique individual; studying means that you can revel in such a lot of various things.”

With Dandelions impressed by way of Frank O’Hara’s poem Having a Coke with You, Nabiha may be keen on the classics, in particular George Eliot’s The Mill on The Floss, Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber and And Then There Have been None by way of Christie Agatha. Additionally a prepared reader of modern writing in media such because the New Yorker, her tastes are in point of fact numerous.

“When I used to be 15 years outdated, I began to imagine my writing extra critically and began filing my paintings to other contests and magazines,” says Nabiha. “I used to be shortlisted a few occasions for my poetry, however the BBC award was once vital. I by no means anticipated to be shortlisted, and it was once best once I were given the e-mail asking if they may name me that I had an concept.

“I simply gave just a little squeal and went ‘oh,’” he provides. “It was once pretty, simply wonderful, particularly as he had written one thing that he had created all through GCSE English inventive writing periods and he was once pondering of filing it till the final day. I simply drafted one thing totally other on the final minute and submitted it as a substitute. I am not certain why, however I am satisfied I did!

Nabiha Ali (middle)

“I did not truly imagine the concept that of Dandelions, the tale got here to me whilst I used to be writing,” Nabiha explains of her piece, which includes a protagonist reflecting at the reminiscence of small moments with a person on the subject of her, exploring how which means will also be discovered even in easy reports. “I am more than happy with the way it grew to become out.”

After volunteering at Burnley Adolescence Theater over the summer time, Nabiha began college, the place she research English language and literature, in addition to industry. When she’s no longer writing, she has a name for scribbling concepts on any close by piece of paper, Nabiha likes to stroll round and paint watercolours. And he or she undoubtedly can paint an image.

“Dandelions is a lot more floral, romantic and descriptive in relation to taste, however I am seeking to escape from that just a little,” he admits. “I have been studying a large number of Angela Carter and Margaret Atwood, and when I have been writing in recent years, I have been leaning extra in opposition to a extra gothic taste. The usage of colour pictures and metaphors is truly particular.”

Now in its 8th yr, the BBC Younger Writers’ Award with the College of Cambridge 2022 was once open to all writers elderly 14-18 and was once created to find and encourage the following era of writers. In truth, the prize has a name for bringing to gentle the celebs of the story of the long run.

Nabiha Ali

Previous winners come with Lottie Turbines, who was once shortlisted at 16 sooner than successful it at 18 and touchdown a publishing contract for her first number of Monstrum brief tales; Tabitha Rubens, winner of the 2020 HG Wells World Brief Tale Pageant; Reyah Martin, who gained the 2020 Canada/Europe Commonwealth Brief Tale Award; and Brennig Davies, who gained the coveted Crown literary prize on the Urdd Eisteddfod, a Welsh-language cultural pageant.

“What a yr of remarkable entries,” says Radio 1’s Katie Thistleton, chair of the judging panel for the BBC Younger Writers Award 2022, which additionally featured writer and Black Women’ E book Membership co-founder Melissa Cummings-Quarry, the poet Nikita Gill, YouTuber and virtual writer Joel Rochester, and Irish novelist and podcaster Caroline O’Donoghue.

“It’s been an absolute privilege to learn such a lot of bold but quietly intimate tales of such wonderful high quality,” he provides. “Relationships appear to be an actual center of attention for our shortlisted writers this yr, and but every has discovered a unconditionally distinctive and unique, on occasion subversive option to discover the subject, whether or not in response to lived revel in or subject matters that they’re enthusiastic about

“I’m in awe and I do know my fellow judges really feel the similar means. Each creator in this listing has a shiny long run as a creator forward of them and I will’t wait to peer what they do subsequent.”

Nabiha Ali

“Those tales are stories so wealthy with imagery, lyrical phrases and distinctive plots,” says Katie’s fellow pass judgement on Nikita Gill. “I’m venerated to have learn those in point of fact remarkable tales and want to congratulate all of the writers for the best way they have got treated even essentially the most tricky subject material with nuance and nice care.

“The standard of this yr’s entries is past good and I stay up for seeing those writers proceed to thrive on their very good paintings.”

Additionally looking on the shortlisted items, together with Nabiha’s Dandelion, was once Cambridge College Student, Professor and Director of Research, Dr. Bonnie Lander Johnson, who was once inspired by way of the sheer stage of writing. uncovered. “Urgently related, considerate and a laugh, those items will marvel and entertain,” she mentioned.

“The BBC Younger Writers’ Award with the College of Cambridge continues to focus on the bright prose of rising writers: a converting international wishes tales greater than ever. [so] We inspire all budding writers, without reference to background, to proportion with us their imaginative and prescient of the arena all of us are living in.

“And we inspire all readers, without reference to age, to sit down again and benefit from the craft of those younger other folks.”

Nonetheless best 16 years outdated, Nabiha will no doubt obtain many awards if she continues on her present trajectory. And within the intervening time, she says that she is going to certainly stay writing. “I understand it’s formidable, however I am hoping to get to the purpose the place she will be able to write complete time as a occupation,” says Nabiha. “I will stay writing. I am nonetheless filing to a large number of other literary magazines, so I am hoping I will make a occupation of it one day.”

Nabiha Ali

Leave a Comment