Esme, First Story student, Downing Street reception 2014

‘The chief reason why First Story is so important is that they provide value. My work is taken seriously, not as a student or a teenager, but as a writer. This program provides contact with published authors who talk to me as if I were a peer. I cannot tell you the significance of authors like Peter Hobbs and Will Fiennes – approaching me in a crowd, calling me by name and taking an interest in what I have been writing lately. The self-belief that instils is just as important as the writing itself.’

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