A handwritten letter is a lot more personal than its digital counterpart. Handwriting, the choice of pen and ink create a unique visual combination.


Top tips for writing a winning letter



  1. Think about what pen to use. We love fountain pens, but you can use any ink pen that suits you.
  2. Consider your choice of ink and paper. We recommend keeping it simple by using blue or black ink on white paper, but beautiful ink comes in many colours and can create a strong and distinctive tone.
  3. Handwritten letters usually look best on plain white paper, but some people may find it easier to write on lined paper.
  4. The word limit for the competition is 200 words. Don’t feel like you have to use them all up or fill every blank space on the page. Remember that sometimes less is more.
  5. Write carefully in your best handwriting.
  6. Using traditional, italic and calligraphic style can give a nice look, but make sure the writing is easily legible. If the script is too elaborate, it can be difficult for the judges to read.
  7. Feel free to be creative with your handwriting. If you would like to put in a small illustration, thought bubble, or arrow pointing to another piece of text, you can. But remember: this is a letter writing competition, not an art, calligraphy or drawing competition!



  1. Think carefully about what you want to convey. Be brief and to the point.
  2. Creativity and originality in the content of the letter are important. Make it memorable or surprising.
  3. Make sure your grammar, spelling and punctuation are on point.
  4. Using emotive and descriptive vocabulary will help your entry stand out.


Special tips for each category:

Primary & Secondary

Think about the character to whom you want to address the letter. What makes your letter to them original? It doesn’t have to be a character you admire, maybe you have something to say to a character you don’t like. We’ll leave this up to you!


Get creative with the theme of this year’s competition, ‘Change the Story’. Is there an author you would like to write to and suggest they change a story in their book? Or a character from a book you admire who has changed your story? Have fun with it!