• 2002: No 3713


    Competition No 3713

    An extract from Orwell’s 2084.


    It was a bright cold day in April and Winston Smith slipped quickly through the doors of Business Friendly Mansions, watched by the CCTV camera. There were now cameras in every room of every home, not only to keep a check on possible dissent, but to feed the insatiable demand for reality TV. Tonight, Winston reflected, thousands of proles would be gambling their meagre wages on the fortunes of Constipated Nick.

    Across the road stood a huge poster with the Party slogans:




    Below them  was a gigantic leering picture of Big Blair. Nobody had seen Big Blair in the flesh since the Last Election in 2005, but the computer-generated images of him and his smirking wife were eternally young.

    Winston walked to the end of the street on Harrow Hill and looked out to the rolling sea, where London had once stood. He thought gloomily of labour camps full of anti-capitalist protesters, of trials without jury, of derelict railways. But then a smile came to his face. Two and two were four; Big Blair was not omnipotent. His hand slid towards his pocket. At least we had kept the pound.