Competitions 37A and 37B: results

Another new judge – Ernest Betts, the Daily Express film critic – wants a far-fetched extract from a gossip column, relating to well-known authors – there is an amusing example given of one about Belloc. (This is the first competition to be capped at 150 words, although that may be becauseof the form being parodied.) Marion Peacock nearly wins with a promising tale of JC Squire in an ‘orange suit with the new moonlight sonata socks’, but Betts is very firm that his entrants don’t understand the lightness of touch a popular paper requires – and he suggests that few would have won the ‘miserable five shillings’ that a popular newspaper might have offered, compared with the prizes on offer here. He gives first prize to Charles Moore, and allows W. Hodgson Burnet a half-guinea, though ‘frowns’ on its ‘longwindedness’:

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Only the rule about not winning two competitions stops the now on-a-run W. Hodgson Burnet from winning 37B as well. The task here is to write ‘Ode to Grapefruit’ in the manner of Shelley’s ‘Ode To A Skylark’ (click on the title for the original). T.E. Casson … no, his entry was too long. The Saturday Review old stagers scoop the pool: Pibwob and Valimus.

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