Potential Plus UK Young Reporter Adam Rafael Holmes has had an eventful 2019.

In February he was the recipient of the Above and Beyond Young Person’s Resilience Award  awarded to him for overcoming many disadvantages, including hearing and speech difficulties, mild dyspraxia and being the victim of  bullying. Adam used those barriers as tools for growth, particularly in the field of creative writing, where he has won the Wicked Young Writer’s Award and the Ted Hughes Young Poet of the Year Award.  

Since the awards he has moved to the south coast, started at a new school and has now written and published his own book “The Tunnel of Adventure” He plans to donate the proceeds to I CAN, the Children’s Communication Charity.

Adam enjoyed reading the Enid Blyton Adventure series and started writing a novel based on the Enid Blyton characters as part of NaNoWriMo (the National Novel Writing Month).  After making a good start of 4000 words in November 2018 he decided in 2019 to continue writing, then set himself the task of finishing writing and illustrating his novel by his 10th birthday in August.

“I tried to follow the advice of another author and ‘not break the chain’. This means that every day I had to write something, even if just a sentence.” He didn’t quite manage writing everyday – things like chess tournaments got in the way – but he managed to complete his novel by his self-imposed deadline of his 10th birthday.

Adam has already started writing his next novel and having moved to the south coast where he couldn’t find any literary clubs, he and his mother have started up a writing group called Felpham Young Writers who meet once a month for a creative writing workshop.

Adam wants to inspire other children to find their voices through writing. “When I was young, I had speech difficulties and that’s one of the reasons I started writing. If you can’t speak, or if you find it hard to sound like other people, you can have your characters saying what you want to say when you can’t find the words… If you can’t speak and communicate easily then life can be quite difficult. It’s not fair if someone thinks they can’t do things because they’ve got these difficulties. I want to prove that everyone can achieve the same or different great things.”