We’re thrilled to announce that the winner of the Madeleine Milburn Summer Writing Competition: Make Us Scared, selected by Fiona Barton, C.L. Taylor and Madeleine Milburn, is Richard Lakin with GARAGE FLOWERS.


GARAGE FLOWERS is a psychological thriller which started as a short story short-listed for the Bridport Prize in 2014. It begins with the life-changing moment when Chrissy – who is working in a motorway service station –recognises her former teacher when he walks in to buy a porn magazine. In the embarrassment he drops his wallet and Chrissy finds a passport photo of a former classmate Leanne who went missing 20 years ago tucked inside.


Richard is a former journalist and a member of Writing West Midlands’ Room 204 development programme. In 2013 he won the Guardian’s annual travel writing prize and in 2009 he won the Daily Telegraph Just Back annual story prize. He has been highly commended in the Yeovil Short Story prize and published by the Daily Telegraph, Cheshire Prize for Literature, Notes from the Underground, Londonist and Oxonian Review among others.


Richard has won £500 and an offer of representation from the agency and all shortlisted entries will receive written feedback from the agency.


Thank you so much to everyone who entered and to our amazing shortlistees.