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Enter the second FABO story competition!

★ The first FABO Story competition for 2021 has closed and author Kathy White is reading the entries. The winner will be announced in the next few days.

★ The second FABO Story competition for 2021 has now started and author Melinda Szymanik has written a story starter. You can enter the competition now!

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

Instructions

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 May 28th (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 Melinda!

Melinda’s Story Starter: Trouble at Winch Farm

They’d got a bit lost.

They’d never had a farm holiday before and everything was strange and new. Jodie and Ben had been shocked at how early everyone got up. It was weird eating breakfast while the rest of the world seemed fast asleep, the darkness of night still asserting itself over everything.

But riding pillion on the quad bikes – ‘Yes you do have to wear a helmet,’ Mrs Winch insisted – was huge fun and they both loved the cows and Mr Winch’s dog Barney and the farm cat Pippi. They’d done their best to help where they could and stay out of the way when things got tricky.

And on the third day when they’d finished their chores and dinner was still hours away, Mrs Winch said, ‘why don’t you go for a walk. If you follow the driveway past the house to the gate and go through into the bush there’s a terrific track down to the beach.’

‘That sounds great,’ Jodie said. ‘We’ll be back by four thirty so we can help with dinner.’

They’d headed along the driveway and clambered over the gate and soon were deep in the bush on the narrow little trail. Until Ben saw something. ‘I think it’s Pippi. Maybe she’s lost. Or hurt. ’ And he was off before Jodie could say ‘Stop!’ She heard him thrashing about, the sound getting fainter as the distance between them grew.

‘Come back!’ she yelled, before plunging off the track and into the bush after him. She did her best to follow the noise but no matter how fast she went she couldn’t seem to catch up. And then she heard the sound no one wants to hear. A sharp, anguished cry and then a piercing scream. ‘Ben!’

Pushing through the tangle of scrub and trees as fast as she could, Jodie nearly stepped off the edge of the cliff herself. She looked down before fear stopped her. Below, half way down the sheer face of stone, Ben perched where a small ledge jutted beside a crooked tree growing out horizontally over the drop. Was that blood on his forehead?

‘BEN!?’

Now You Finish The Story…

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Enter the first 2021 FABO Story Competition!

The first FABO Story competition for 2021 has started! Author Kathy White has written the first story starter and is waiting for your entry.

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

Instructions

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 May 14th (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 Kathy!

Kathy’s Story Starter: Adventure on Stewart Island

kiwi2
Photo by the Graf boys

“This place is pure magic,” I whisper. I’m watching a white-tailed deer amble past the North Arm Hut. She stops next to the picnic table and bends down to nibble at the leaves on the ground. Right where we had lunch today. Behind the hut, I can hear two possums squabbling and then a thump as one of them falls out of a tree onto the corrugated iron roof.

This natural magnificence all happens as the sun goes down, painting a rosy glow across the bay, and it all would be perfect … except Dad and Sam haven’t noticed any of it. They’re still talking about football. Unbelievable.

I glance over at them drying the dinner dishes. “Hey, are we still getting up early to look for kiwi?”

“Absolutely,” Dad says. “How about I wake you at 4?” He winks at me.

“No way, José. We’re on holiday,” Sam says, flicking his tea-towel at Dad. “I’m not going anywhere before lunchtime.”

kiwi1
Photo by the Graf boys

Dad shrugs at me as if to say there’s nothing he can do. I know he likes sleeping in as much as Sam, and Sam is the laziest brother a girl could have.

“This IS MY birthday present,” I remind them. “And I want to hear and see a kiwi. It’s all I want.” But Sam’s already back to talking about Ronaldo and his famous free kicks, and why he thinks he might be talented enough to be Ronaldo the Second. Right now, I’d like to give him a famous free kick of my own.

I flop onto my bed in the bunkroom and reach under my pillow for the treasure I found earlier. It’s a golden crescent-shaped whistle. The initials KW are scratched onto the back of it, which is kind of freaky because those are my initials and it even looks like my writing. But it’s not mine.  I try blowing it again for what must be the 6th or 7th time today but there’s still no sound coming out. Not even a rattle. Perhaps I need to give it a good blast.

I tuck it into my swanndri pocket, grab my torch and a roll of toilet paper, and slip out the back door. It’s a bit of a hike up a steep hill to the toilet, and you do have to check the seat for spiders, but it’s the only place for a girl to get privacy here, and even then you have to put your foot against the door to stop annoying brothers from barging in.

I’m just about to drop my pants when a small voice squeaks. “I’m so pleased you called. It was so faint, I nearly missed it.” In the halo of my torchlight, I see a young rat perched on the edge of the basin. “Are you ready to go? Do you have your whistle? We don’t have much time.”

Now You Finish The Story…

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Important notice: FABO is changing to a weekly competition until lockdown is over!

The FABO team have been thrilled with the number of entries we’ve received so far for the first competition!

It’s clear a lot of you are eager to write stories while NZ is in lockdown. So we’ve decided to switch to a weekly competition for the lockdown period so you won’t have as long to wait.

Melinda’s competition is currently running. It will now end at 8pm this Sunday April 5th. Please make sure you get your entry in before then.

Maureen Crisp is our next author, and her competition will start on Monday April 6th. That means you’ll have a brand new competition to enter next week!

You can enter the competition on the website.

Happy writing and good luck!

 

 

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FABO Story Competitions begin March 30! Are you ready to write?

FABO Story will be starting again from March 30th. A new story starter will be posted then, and you’ll have two weeks to finish the story your way.

From March 30th you’ll find a story starter and all other instructions you need to enter the FABO Story competition on the FABO website.

Check www.fabostory.wordpress.com from March 30th for details.

We’re looking forward to reading your stories!

The FABO Team

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A new FABO writing contest has begun!

Children’s author Kathy White has just posted a new FABO story starter. She’s waiting for you to get your thinking caps on and come up with a great ending to the story! The deadline for getting your entry in is 5pm on June 26th.

Just visit https://fabostory.wordpress.com/ and you’ll find the start of Kathy’s story on the front page. She is waiting to read all the entries and pick a winner. Will it be you? Good luck!

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The Winning Story By Aoife Moss!

THE STORY STARTER:

The Secret Project

Today was my lucky day! Dad had left in a hurry and the large padlock which usually stopped anyone entering his workshop hung slightly ajar.

Just to explain, Dad’s garage workshop had been out of bounds for as long as I could remember. Every Saturday after lunch he’d disappear into it. Then the whoosh of a welding torch, whirr of a riveting gun, or loud high pitched whine of a metal saw would start up, piercing the air.
“What are you making Dad? Can I help?” I must have asked the question a million times.

“Maybe when you’re a bit older,” he’d say. “I’m just working on one of my projects. It’s a secret.”

But not today, not for much longer, it wasn’t.

I checked to make sure no-one was around, undid the padlock, and carefully pushed open the door.

What I saw was better than anything I’d dreamed of.

It stood motionless by the work bench — shiny, silver and silent, and as tall as me.

Bet I could make it even better. Dad’s going to be so proud …

THE WINNING STORY BY AOIFE MOSS

Perhaps I could finish it. Dad would be so proud. An hour later I heard the slap of sandals moving towards the shed. I rushed to hide- what could I do? In my haste I tripped over the foot of the sparkling robot and knocked open the toolbox. The tools clattered to the dirty floor.

The cold voice of my father called out sharply “who’s there?”

I held my breath, any minute now the door would be thrown open and I would be busted. I hadn’t intended to be seen, I thought I would just finish it off and slip out and no-one would ever know- until I confessed of course and dad would think it was brilliant. Just then an almighty CREAK filled the air. A few seconds later I heard the sound of a window being smashed, a giant metal toe clanked down millimetres from my head! A glimpse upwards proved that the enormous lump of metal belonged to none other than MY ROBOT. He had just resumed his correct position when bang! The door flew open.

“What are you doing in the shed” Dad screamed uncontrollably.

“I-I was just…”my voice trailed off. “I am very disappointed in you Madam” he bellowed. I hung my head. I was done for.

Suddenly the ground began to shake. We were both momentarily stunned. The Robot was ALIVE. I dive tackled Dad just as the Robot lumbered past, right out through the door. I sprang to my feet spurred into action, I had to stop him. However my dad was still rather dazed. “What is going on” he mumbled. “Dad we have to stop him”” I cried exasperated. “Yes, yes”’ dad muttered “I’ll have breakfast in bed, I’m not feeling great, I’ll take the day off work if that is okay.”

I rolled my eyes “Typical fathers, they create something awesome and can’t even control it.” Oh well, I sighed as I raced out the door and
then shrank back into the shadows. How could I keep the robot out of sight from others and follow him? I could follow him easily – but how do you hide a ten foot tall walking metal robot.

Whoa things are just getting better and better, I thought sarcastically.

I took a wild jump and clung to the robot’s leg for dear life. I shinnied up the pole of robot leg when suddenly I felt a tiny knob
marked- “good button”. ‘Well that’s convenient” I muttered angrily and rammed my thumb onto the red circle. The robot stumbled and fell onto the grass but just before I was crushed under the bottom of the robot he swooped his hand down and snatched me from my death. He saved my life!

Now I live a happy ordinary life with a best friend that is a…Robot and a dad who STILL doesn’t let me into his shed!

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Fabostory Judges Report – The Winners Announced!

Competition: 1-15 May 2015
Judge: Melinda Szymanik

Wow, it was very exciting to see the entries flood in to the inbox for the first fabostory competition for 2015 – there were 47 stories in total. Well done! (Please do remember to get your entry in before the deadline though, as those that arrive after the cut off will miss out).

There were some truly wild and imaginative stories, some wonderful writing, and I commend you ALL on entering. Keep up the good work.

My favourite stories were those that had a cool original story idea with a beginning, middle, and end, with imaginative writing and good grammar (spelling, sentence construction, consistent use of tenses and point of view). Some of you wrote great stories, but unfortunately they stopped before they’d got to the end. You got extra points if you made the story something to do with the museum. On the other hand some of you borrowed a little too much from the movie ‘Night at the Museum’. Amber Sowden was the only one to make use of the movie in a fresh and logical way.

I enjoyed Tara Shepherd’s inventiveness, the start of Amie Tunnicliffe’s story and Talia Bentley’s descriptions (e.g. – ‘page white face’). Chanel Currie knew how to write a good plot, with a good reason behind everything she included. I loved how Jessica Hargreaves had a character jokingly refer to our hero as ‘Russell Sprout’. Libby Cassie’s description of the path of the torchlight was terrific – ‘The light crawled along the wall and clung to the displays as it searched the room.’ Ava Renich was also very inventive with her storytelling.

After much consideration I got my shortlist down to the following writers – Maria Laurie, Charlie O’Connell, Hannah Stevens, Noah Fifita (who used the fantastic word hullabaloo in his story), Isha Walker, Phoebe Preston-Marshall and Amber Sowden. All of your stories were potential winners. But there can only be two …

My winners are Charlie O’Connell, and Isha Walker. Congratulations on two terrific stories. Please email your addresses to me at melinda@tale-spin.com and I will send out your prizes.

Note: A new competition will start on Friday.

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Ready to Write?

Acclaimed children’s author Melinda Szymanik has just posted a new FABO story starter – the first for 2015. Finish Melinda’s story and you could win a prize!

Just visit https://fabostory.wordpress.com/ and you’ll find the start of the story on the front page. You have a fortnight to get your entry in, and Melinda’s looking forward to reading your story. Good luck!

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Sharpen Your Pencils – Fabo 2015 Is Almost Here!

Hey, we’re back for another fun-filled year of writing!! Did you miss us?? We missed you, and can’t wait to see the fantastic stories you come up with this year. So get your pencils sharpened, your pens primed and your fingers limbered up and ready to dance across those keyboards.

Fabo 2015 will be starting up in term two, with the first story beginning posted on May 1st. All the rules for writing and submitting your stories this year will be the same as last year.

Best wishes, and good luck! from the Fabo 2015 team.

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A New FABO Story Competition Has Just Opened!

It’s getting towards the end of the year, and the FABO team are preparing to put their feet up and take a well-deserved break. But awesome, award-winning author Melinda Szymanik has volunteered to squeeze in one more competition, and she’s just posted up a brand new Fabo-ulous story starter! Finish off Melinda’s story and you could win a Fabo-rific mystery prize that will include one of her books, and possibly some other goodies too 🙂

Have you got what it takes to write a winning story? Visit the Fabo Story website now to enter!