Segora International Writing Competitions
Introducing our judges for 2018
Go to Competitions, then click on each competition page to discover the winners.


Poetry: Mario Petrucci Short Stories: Harriett Springbett Vignette: John Sherwin One act play: Gordon Simms
Poetry competition Short story competition Vignette competition One Act Play competition
Award-winning poet, ecologist, PhD physicist and Royal Literary Fund Fellow Mario Petrucci has held major poetry residencies at the Imperial War Museum and BBC Radio 3. Heavy Water: a poem for Chernobyl (Enitharmon, 2004) secured the Daily Telegraph/ Arvon Prize and “inflicts... the finest sort of shock, not just to the senses, but to the conscience, to the soul” (Poetry London). His collection i tulips (Enitharmon, 2010) takes its name from his 1111-strong Anglo-American sequence, of which the waltz in my blood (Waterloo, 2011) and anima (Nine Arches, 2013) are also part. These “modernist marvels” (Poetry Book Society) exemplify Petrucci’s distinctive combination of innovation and humanity.

Harriet Springbett’s stories have been shortlisted in the Bath Short Story Award, longlisted with Fish and published in literary journals. She also won a place in the 2016 edition of the Segora competition. Her debut novel, Tree Magic, was published last year by Impress Books, and although she has talked at literary events from the Olympia in London to the Charroux festival in France, she much prefers playing with words at her desk. She lives in Poitou-Charentes, blogs at Harriet Springbett’s Playground and loves quirky stories with a strong voice

Once upon a time in the Punk era, John wrote for numerous fanzines. In Hong Kong, he co-founded the Joint Liaison Group of poets with American poet Louie Crew. Currently, as a trained sommelier, he writes a monthly article on wine for the Deux Sèvres Magazine. He has twice won the Segora vignette prize in 2014 and 2017. In a bid to break the 300-word barrier he is slaving away on his first novel about a champion wine taster with almost supernatural abilities.

Gordon Simms has been a Head of English, Head of Performing Arts and a Drama Advisor. He has written several full-length and one-act plays. His ten-minute play Zero Contract was presented in August 2017 at the Charroux Literary Festival, where he led a workshop on writing ten-minute plays. In November Zero Contract was part of TheatriVasle’s festival. He has recently completed a set of short stories based on his upbringing in Bedfordshire in the 1940s. He has won many awards for his poetry: his full collection Uphill to the Sea won the Biscuit prize in 2011. With his wife Jocelyn he organised three bilingual literary festivals in rural France. In October the Simms again put on a highly successful Segora presentation day at St.André-sur-Sèvre where they now live.
In 2014 a poetry anthology Without Weapons featuring Segora poets was launched. Proceeds from this and from competition entries are in aid of Medécins sans Frontières. Gordon is available for judging competitions and for poetry and drama workshops.


Follow us on Facebook


We support
Médecins Sans Frontières