We give you the beginning of the story and you write what happens next!

★ The sixth FABO Story competition for 2021 has started and author Elena De Roo has written a story starter. Finish the story your way, and enter now!

Click here to take a look at the schedule for this year’s competitions.


1. Read the story starter and continue the story.

2. We prefer your story to be 500 words or less (not including the story starter). Stories over 550 words will be disqualified.

3. You have two weeks to write your story, so there’s no need to rush! Take your time and send us the best story you can write.

4. Send your story to us by 7pm Friday August 6th (NZ time).

5. The winner of the competition will be announced on this website a few days after the competition closes.

6. Every fortnight there will be a new competition and a children’s author will post a new story starter for you.

7. The competition is open to kids aged 13 and under.

8. The winner will receive a mystery prize donated by the judge.

Elena’s Story Starter

Even though Jono and I both had friends over, the rainy afternoon seemed to be stretching out forever.

“What about baking something,” called Mum from her home office, when Jono and Anaru started chasing each other around the living room, whooping loudly. “There’s a recipe for cupcakes somewhere in Nana’s old scrap book.”

It sounded like a good idea, especially as we could eat them afterwards.

While Ash and I turned the pages, Jono and Anaru looked over our shoulders. The recipes, most of them in Nana’s spidery writing, were dotted with grease spots and had interesting titles, like Tapioca Pudding and Lemon Barley Water.

“Give it here. I’ll find the cupcakes,” said Anaru. He started rifling through the pages and a small square of folded paper fell out. “Bet that’s it.”

The faintly lined paper was yellowed at the edges and almost falling apart along the fold lines. I laid it out carefully on the bench.

~ RECIPE FOR A WISH ~ it began, in Nana’s best printing.

783 thoughts on “We give you the beginning of the story and you write what happens next!

  1. Kia Ora Fabo Story
    I love this competition, and it was a great boredom-buster in lockdown. I looked forward to the end of every week because of this.I’m so glad Fabo is still going strong!
    Thanks for everything!

    1. You can use emojis if you want to, but the story needs to stand in its own right without them. If something in the story is scary, you still need to show the fear in your writing, rather than just putting a scared emoji.

    1. There is no minimum word length for your story, but a very short story of just a few sentences is unlikely to win. Have a look at past winners for a good indication of how long your story should be.

      1. Click on the ‘Blog’ link at the top of this website and read the judges’ reports from previous competitions. The winner’s story for the competition is at the bottom of each report.

  2. Hello. When we write the ending of the story, does the story have to finish or can we leave the story at a cliffhanger?

    1. HI there. I’m sorry, we’ve never counted. There are usually around ten competitions each year and entry numbers vary for each one. Usually we might get anywhere between around 30 to 150 entries for each competition.

    1. Hi there. We’re happy you enjoy entering, but please enter each competition only once. Check the FAQ section of the website if you need more information about FABO rules.

  3. Oh i see a lot of people have already asked when its starting 2021. But idk what term 2 is. Could you explain?

    1. You can EITHER use one of the poetry prompt lines somewhere in your poem, OR write a poem using one of the pictures as inspiration INSTEAD of one of the poetry prompt lines.


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