Apply for the development programme

Our latest team of teen writers, illustrators and storytellers.

This year we will be selecting seven teenagers from around Scotland to join the What’s Your Story? Development Programme.

We’re looking for people aged 14-17 who want to develop their creative skills in writing, illustration or storytelling. It’s completely free to apply and to take part. All expenses are paid for, wherever you travel from and whatever access support you need.

You can find more information about different activities and the application process on our essential information page.


Thanks to our friends at The Gaelic Books Council there will be one place especially for a Gaelic language applicant, but we welcome applications from young people working in any language, including Scots.

Our first 10 teen participants celebrate at the creative retreat.

Explore Scotland’s Literary Scene

Our first meeting takes place at the National Library of Scotland, where we’ll explore the resources, organisations and opportunities for teenage writers and illustrators that exist in Scotland. We want to make sure our teen writers & illustrators are never short of inspiration and guidance.

Our first meeting in Edinburgh at the National Library of Scotland will take place Friday 11 – Saturday 12 January 2019.

Professional Mentoring

You will be mentored by a professional who is working in the creative form of your choice. Previous mentors have included a graphic novelists, screenwriters, illustrators, novelists and poets; this year’s mentors will be chosen specifically for you.

Creative Retreat

For five days in Feburary 2019, we will travel to beautiful Moniack Mhor in the Highlands so you can work on creative projects with your mentors, design StoryCon 2019, and explore your ideas and potential.

The retreat will take place Monday 18 – Saturday 23 February 2019.

Plan StoryCon 2019

StoryCon is Scotland’s biggest creative writing and illustration conference for 13-19 year olds. Teens on the development programme will decide on the workshops, invite guest speakers, plan the day and help host nearly 200 other teens!

Teen Showcase

To celebrate the hard-work of everyone involved and mark the end of the What’s Your Story? Programme, we’ll hold a showcase of your work in Autumn 2019.

“This has been such an amazing opportunity, allowing me to meet other young creators and learn so many new skills. It’s helped me become more confident and proficient as a writer and I would recommend it to everyone who likes to create. Everyone has a story to tell, and without What’s Your Story? so many of them would remain unheard.” What’s Your Story? Participant, 2018


Five of our participants prepare to interview authors at EIBF in Aug 2017.


The deadline for applications will be 12 noon on Monday 12 November 2018. Please read this essential information to find out more about the application process, creative retreat and the rest of the programme.

Applications for the Gaelic language place on the programme are now closed. 

Applications are now closed.