Jackie Patrick, 64 and from Hayling Island, has been shortlisted by McCarthy and Stone along with two others from Basingstoke and Dorset, for her achievements.
The Inspirational Generation competition was launched by the company to celebrate the many ways older people inspire the younger generation.
At 54 Mrs Patrick signed up to the Open University and achieved a BA degree in Literature. She then fulfilled her lifelong dream to live and work abroad, moving to Spain just short of retirement age. She also took up a writing course and completed her first novel
Jackie said: ‘I decided to enter the search for the Inspirational Generation because I thought it would be a great opportunity to tell others about my life after retiring, and it’s a good excuse to write – something that I really enjoy.
‘Before retirement, I never dreamt of starting a novel, let alone finishing writing one.
‘Novel writing has been my constant companion for the last few years and I have thoroughly enjoyed doing it.
‘I think I am a deserving winner because I feel that I inspire others, whatever your age or situation, there are always new and exciting things to look forward to.’
In June, one winner will be selected by a panel of judges and awarded £2,000 in cash.