'I stared at the bullet scar on her nose': Ethan, 12, inspired to write winning story from tales told by his great-grandmother

When 12-year-old Ethan Scot wrote a story from tales told by his great-grandmother, he never imagined it would lead him to win a writing competition.

Friday, 12th March 2021, 7:00 am

Ethan, from Blackpool wrote a real-life story about his late Polish great-grandmother, and his work has now been published in a book, My Twist on a Tale: Everyday Heroes Winning


Ethan, who attends St Bede’s Catholic High School in Lytham, said: ‘I wrote the story from what my great-grandmother said.

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Ethan Scot, 12, was inspired to write ‘Little Babcia My Hero’ from tales told by his great-grandmother
Ethan Scot, 12, was inspired to write ‘Little Babcia My Hero’ from tales told by his great-grandmother

“I am amazed that I have won the competition! I never thought this would happen.”

Youngsters aged four to 19 were encouraged to write a story based on the theme, Everyday Heroes, as part of learning company Pearson’s My Twist on a Tale contest.

Ethan scooped the award in both the North West and Key Stage 3 categories with ‘Little Babcia My Hero’.

Judges said his story was “full of heart and drama”.

Ethan Scot, from Blackpool, and his great-grandmother Joanna Wszolek

Ethan’s engaging story is set in the Polish village of Plawna, near the Ukrainian border.

It follows 93-year-old Little Babcia, ‘whose kisses were as sloppy as a typical grandma’s – and she always hit the bullseye, my lips!’

In the old woman’s garden, Ethan hears Babcia’s tales of occupied Poland in the 1940s, where ‘every house had a German officer they had to feed at mealtimes’.

Later, Babcia recounts a gripping tale of being shot at and injured by Russian soldiers, while in the fields with her first baby.

Ethan was inspired to write his story from what his great-grandmother Joanna Wszolek had recounted

‘I stared at the bullet scar on her nose,’ Ethan wrote. ‘I was mesmerised.’

My Twist on a Tale: Everyday Heroes Winning Stories, is available to download on Pearson’s website with all budding authors receiving their very own hard copy as part of their prize.

Katy Lewis, head of English, drama and languages at Pearson said: “Ethan should be extremely proud of the story he has written. His imagination and writing skills are outstanding.”

Author Irfan Master, who judged Ethan’s category, said: “Ethan’s story stood out for his use of language and skill in describing the setting so vividly and for the heroic portrayal of his great-

grandmother Babcia, who showed such courage to survive.”

Fellow competition judge, Emma Braithwaite of the literacy charity The Reading Agency, added: “This story had me gripped from the start and left me thinking about it long afterwards. The

scene and characters were superbly described – I could clearly see Babcia and the baby running through the field and was so tense waiting to find out what happened to them! A beautiful

story full of heart and drama.”

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