Scotland’s mythical legends are famous worldwide. From fire-breathing dragons to shape-shifting water spirits, our legendary beasts have inspired countless tales of drama and mystery. This year, their side of the story will finally be heard!
Scottish Writers’ Centre was thrilled to recently announce the winners of our children’s creative writing competition Nessie’s Diary. The competition asked entrants to envisage the unknown world of Nessie – the famous Loch Ness monster who has captured local and international imagination for centuries.
Here you can find the wonderful winning entries. We hope you enjoy reading them!
Winner: Greta Lawson (Netherlee Primary School)
Day was dawning.
The subtle yet striking sunrise illuminated the loch, the water glimmering and glowing as finally, after a long and patient wait, the moon faded and the sun emerged into a brand new day.
All inhabitants of the vast lake (except for the birds, who were merrily tweeting their calls to one another) were in a deep, monotonous sleep, showing no sign whatsoever of waking any time soon. Everyone, that is, except Nessie. With her vivacious scales and attractive horns, it was no wonder flocks of tourists crowded to see her. Though without vanity, she was constantly absorbed in her own beauty and seemed oblivious to others and their lives.
As always, Nessie was up, gliding through the cool waters in search of treasure: beauty products. The plants that caught her eye were carefully packed into her wicker basket, and brought back to her perfumed lagoon to be ground, stirred and sprayed into her personalised products. She then tried to sell them off to water animals, without success; every time Nessie floated over, they hurried back home with great haste, eager to escape the stifling scent that left a trail of suffocating flowers in her wake.
On this particular day, Nessie was skimming across the seaweed with great content; seaweed was the best remedy for sore scales and it had been a week since a satisfactory plantation had showed up. Almost at once, the sunrise was blocked. An enormous emerald object was floating above. “Aha!” she thought, “Seaweed! It’s the perfect colour for my new cream!”
With great ease, she ascended up to the surface, basket in claw, ready to clasp a generous handful of the plant. With an enticing excitement building up inside her, she reached out and…
Her claw gripped on painted green straw. Confused, Nessie tugged at the clump. The straw floated down, settling on the seabed. With bewilderment, she poked her head out of the water and stared in disbelief.
“Three camel humps, two antennae, and covered in green?” thought Nessie. “It almost looks like me!”
In a flash all the tourists with their cameras and binoculars came back. For this must be the reason they came – for her! Nessie felt cold dread flooding over her like an odourless gas. People really created imitations?
Nessie shook her head and then, with a sense of overpowering unease, dove down, determined to forget it.
Image credit: Wikipedia
First Runner-Up: Sam Boulton-Jones (Netherlee Primary School)
I dive, deeper and deeper. Soaring through the sea, I hope never to be seen so the legend of Nessie stays alive.
Every day I get chased. Flashing lights attack the loch, searching for truth; fishing nets tear my world apart as I become my own territorial army. People always want to catch me. Yet, I want to remain a mystery – an unknown creature of the underworld. I am lonely. I am Nessie. This is my story.
Shovels slammed into the frozen lake, breaking apart my freedom. I swam out of the loch and into the castle. This was where I hid.
She came down the hall; I never knew her name so I just called her Gold. As she turned the corner, I dove into the water in fear.
“What was that?” she asked her maid.
“A figment of your imagination,” she replied.
“Give me a second please,” Gold insisted.
As she raced to find me, she caught a glimpse of my green tail… I knew my secret, my legend, was lost.
Feeling melancholy I lay on the seabed. With the ice completely gone, I could see a long-haired girl wrapped in wool. She seemed hopeful. It was Gold.
Gold’s hand dipped into the water waiting for me to come closer. I swam forward after plucking up enough courage. I felt myself stroking her hand. Turning around I smiled, a sense of relief and joy filled my heart. She returned the smile. For a moment, the world stopped spinning… when suddenly:
“Oi, who you speakin’ to?”
“No one,” Gold replied.
“The beast!” screamed a lean man, “this is the beast that scared our fish away! This is the beast that made us fishermen poor. “Are you a friend of the beast?”
“Yes I am.”
“Let’s chop his head off,” he shouted.
Suddenly I heard chanting: “Behead the Beast!” Fishing rods came out from everywhere. I had to dodge everything. As I tried not to be caught, I raced for my life.
They were getting closer and closer… I was caught.
I was locked up; with an axe about to cut through my neck. I saw Gold pleading, begging for them to stop. Saying all I needed was a friend. The axe swung. I closed my eyes, begging for freedom when suddenly the chains snapped. I was free. I dove, deeper and deeper.
Image credit: Scotline Tours
Second Runner-Up: Kirsty Simpson (Kilmacolm Primary School)
In the depths of Loch Ness, there lives the Loch Ness Monster, also known as Nessi. She is very beautiful. Her skin is sparkly blue, with pink spikes down her tail. The spikes on her tail are actually pink crystals. Green eyes gleam on her face like she has just finished crying out huge wet tears.
Why is Nessi so sad? She has a seaweed bed, sparkly make-up and the finest paintbrush in the land. She had everything she needed, but paint and paper. Nessi had always wanted to paint! She would often cry and cry. Poor Nessi!
One day she had a great idea. She was going to make a hut on Cherry Island. It would have all her paint, glitter and paper. It took five months to build. Inside, the hut was a beautiful table with all her paint, paper, glitter and paintbrushes. A big stool with rainbow shells on it sat in the corner. Fairy lights hung on the roof. It was very very pretty!
Nessi sat on the stool and began to paint. She painted pebbles, selkies, coral and her her pretty, pretty hut. She is now known as Nessi, the Loch Artist.
Image credit: Visit Scotland