The WordHound Children's Writing Competition
All good things must come to an end…
We’ve had aliens, wizards, princesses and mermaids.
We’ve had crazy potions, talking lemonade, burglar grannies and planets inhabited only by cats.
We’ve found out what Santa does on his off-days, where the WordHound came from, what’s hidden under the bed, and why you shouldn’t go down to the sea at night.
In the last two-and-a-bit years, we’ve read hundreds of stories, had seven guest-judges, and sent out more than thirty prize packs.
What a ride!
But all good things must come to an end, and for now, we’re calling it a day with the competition. We hope you’ve all enjoyed it as much as we have.
Thank you to all the authors who sent us their creations, especially the regulars. We hope you all keep writing! Thanks also to our guest judges:
We’re still keen on encouraging kids to write stories, so if you’re running a competition and would like us to be involved, please get in touch.
The Wall of Fame
If there’s one thing the Quite Astonishingly Good WordHound Children’s Writing Competition has taught us, it’s that winning isn’t everything, but it is pretty good ‘cos you get prizes.
And on top of that, you get your hair-raising yarn, fabulous fantasy or gripping anecdote published on our blog. Right here, in fact!
Live life to the max they say, take risks they say! Well these people certainly do…
Adventure seekers lined the pier and the surrounding harbour walls whilst the roaring gale whipped their hair across their faces. They stood there, anxious for a rip-roaring, action-packed experience with the sea on this stormy evening. The sky was hazy with the glow of the setting sun and the mist that rose off the sea until it was engulfed by the raging tempest causing the air to pack with ever more clouds…
As the waves churned it sent ‘white horses’ galloping towards the pier head. The swelling water rose tall in the near distance before crashing down inches from the spectators faces. The salty ocean air assaulted the eager viewers nostrils. Suddenly, a menacingly large wave grew from the depths of the unforgiving water, momentarily stopping as though contemplating whether to slip back under the surface of the stormy sea or continue rising before cascading down onto the innocent humans gawping at this spectacular once in a lifetime natural phenomenon… The audience let out a gasp of fear and excitement as the swell made up its indecisive mind… The torrent of liquid exploded outwards with such force the downpour dispersed hundreds upon thousands of salty water droplets down and over the gathering crowd.
Now, with a new lease of adrenaline coursing through their veins, the spectators roared with glee as loud as a packed rugby stadium, whilst they wished and waited for another thrilling encounter with the coastal environment at it’s fiercest! The sea, dark grey with anger thrashed back powerfully to conjure up yet another rage entwined wave to thrill the throng of onlookers, who were in awe of the power hidden within the untamed sea…
By Caitlin, aged 12.
Have you ever wondered what happens at the end of the princess and the pea? If you think she stays with the prince, you’re mistaken. Why on earth would a lovely young princess settle down with a prince, who only wants a beautiful wife? Also, she hates peas. The moment they sat down and the plates were brought through with fish and chips on them, she relaxed. Then a HUGE plate of peas were put next to her and she walked out. Why would she stay in that pea-crazy family?
As she strolled down the 5-mile drive, she came across a young injured rabbit. It seemed to have been run over. Gently, she picked it up, before setting off down the driveway again. An hour and 5 minutes later, a very tired princess took her last step of the driveway before catching a taxi to her palace. When she arrived, a smartly-dressed maid took the rabbit from her, placing it in a bed of hay. The young princess (whose name was Ellaria) continued to help the creature for weeks on end.
One day, it happened to speak to her. Ellaria wasn’t very alarmed – she had read all about talking rabbits in ‘The Collection of VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY Rare Creatures’, so had noticed its unusual ear twitching frequency at once. What it said was: “Thanks for looking after me. I’m sure my family would like to see you. Want to come round?” Of course, the princess knew never to decline a nice offer, so accepted happily.
If you looked in the burrow a few hours later, you would see them all laughing and joking merrily. When dinner came, Ellaria asked eagerly, “What is it?” But the terrible reply came back as, “Peas…” (She walked out again after that.)
By Leela, aged 11.
By Abigail, aged 10
THE DOOR TALE
Once upon a time there was a princess named Tara.Her life was unfolding in a castle and she was never allowed to go outside from it.Near the castle, there was a small willage,which Tara loved looking at from the highest window.She would stand in front of that window, looking down on the playfull willage children.They were in old,rugged clothes, but on their faces she saw true happyness.Sadly, she tought to herself:“Oh,I will never have fun like this“.She barely ever saw her parents and with her siblings ,she did not really get along.It bothered her the most that everyone arround her were acting so vain…but she new one person in the castle that was different ,just like her.
One day,Tara could not keep those feelengs just for herself and she rushed for the castle’s loft.There,lived an old woman named Zora, a wise and kind castle’s maid.Tara loved her from a very young age.Old woman never talked much, but she always had a content smile on her face.The girl knew she is the only person who will truly understand her.She complained to her and the old lady told her:“Come with me…if you are ready?“
Tara nodded her had,a bit frightened,not knowing what to expect.Zora led her to a basement that she didn’t even knew existed.Before them, appeared a big hallway filled with many doors.The doors were all very different…some were adorned with gold, some with diamonds and some were just plain, from steel or wood. Old woman said to Tara:“Mind how you choose and follow your heart“. Than she gave her a wodden necklace and sets her off to choose for the right door.Tara walked across the hallway, but she felt nothing special passing by most of the doors.When she came almost to the end ,slowly even loosing hope, one smal, wooden door catches her eye.She got hold of the doorknob and as she turned to old Zora she noticed a proud and happy look on her face, even a one small tear in her eye.Tara than firmly enters through the door.
She found herself on a meadow,surrounded by woods.She saw many children, hapilly playing,exactly like those children from the willage.She was amazed that the children were using many tools, the kind of things she was never allowed even to touch.The children built beautifull, colourfull houses, playgrounds and many other interesting things.Very soon she noticed that all children are wearing the same necklace as her.
At that moment she realized that old Zora was not merely a maid, and most importantly she realized that nothing doesn’t have to be what it looks like from the outside…
By Sara, aged 11
The handle of the front door was rustic and as it turned, the door hinges made a yearning creak. Dust filled the house and white sheets covered the few pieces of furniture scattered around. As I walked in, I thought I heard whispering from the walls. Maybe I imagined it. In the living room, the whispering continued. I bit down on my lip, trying to fight the urge to run. I walked down the narrow corridor, up the creaky stairs and onto the landing of the second floor.
Whispers from the walls droned on. What were they saying? I ventured into a room hesitantly. In the corner sat a dusty desk and chair with newspapers scattered on it, dating back to March 1956.
The whispers came again and it triggered a memory…
People told me that years ago a young man and woman had lived here. One day in April 1956, they mysteriously disappeared. No one has seen them since or can explain their sudden disappearance, and their relatives disconnected from them years ago…
The whispers were louder and began to call me with their seething voices. Ghost-like silhouettes sprung from the walls into the shadows. It was them – the couple – they were…GHOSTS!
My screams echoed as I stumbled down the staircase. The voices rang rapidly, as they followed me with their ghostly forms. Fear was etched on my face and my fear let off a burning scent. I kept running, not daring to look back. My hand grasped the front doorknob and I threw it open. Making a dash, I fumbled for the car key, jumped in the car and started it. I pressed down hard on the accelerator. My heart raced as I looked in the review mirror and asked myself ‘did I just imagine that?’
By Mari-Sol, aged 10
What an exciting day I’d had yesterday! I’d been so bored at first. I decided to set off on the icey roads. After five minutes, I spotted a large pink rock in the side of a hill.
“That’s funny,” I muttered to myself. All the others are grey.”
I clambered up and touched it. It peeled a little under my nail.
“Paint,” I said, surprised.
It had a small door on it, when I bent closer. It was brown, with a little gold latch and key. Key! I fumbled with the lock and the door opened. I saw a small book shelf, and tap and counter, table and two chairs, and a miniature sofa to match. And right in the middle, sat with a puppy, was a fairy.
“Oh my days,” I exclaimed, before I was turned minute! Now I matched the furniture.
“Hello.” Said the fairy. “I don’t get visitors often, I’m Sylvia.”
Oh my days,” I repeated, hardly able to believe what was happening to me. The puppy, who I could see close up had folding, shimmering wings.
“This is Sapphire,” said Sylvia, pointing to the puppy. I patted the puppy enviously. I would have loved a little dog.
“Hello,” I stammered, ecstatic.
“Sylvia.” “Oh, you are…”
“Sapphire was bouncing round my feet all the while.
“While you’re here, do you want to have a wish? I shrink down children who come peeping and give them wishes.
“Urm… mine? I wish I could fly. Permanently.”
“Oh, a classic,” Sylvia murmured, fishing a pin wand from her minute pocket. I saw a pink flowing spark. I fainted dead away with shock. When I stirred, I saw a worried face peering down at me.
“Cali,” I muttered, pulling myself up.
“Oh Cali,” she cried, wrapping her arms around me like we were old friends. I remembered my wish, excitedly, I tried flapping my arms extravagantly.
“Not like that,” Sylvia laughed. “Think of flying, and you will.” And sure enough, as I pictured myself flying over the hills, I rose, and with me Sylvia copied, then Sapphire. My stomach was turning, it felt wonderful.
“Let’s go!” Sylvia cried, and we flew away, into the sunset.
“Oh!” I woke up with a start. I lay in my bed, awoken from my dream. I pictured the dream in my head and started rising, rising, away…
By Cali, aged 8
Felicity was only five minutes from the horrible, polluted village. She’d already had to block her sensitive nose with her magic. Finally, she entered the cave and smelt fresh air. Sapphire, a dragon, flew into the room.
The great scaly turquoise dragon started to wave her snout in the air and shifted into the form of a cat. They started discussing how the pollution came about and how to stop it.
They thought of many ideas but Felicity thought of the best one of all. To send the pollution back where it came from, another planet called Pollutiohn. What they’d have to do is use Felicity’s giant hoover, which would suck in all the polluted air.
The next day, Felicity brought the gigantic hoover to Sapphire’s cave. She made sure none of the aliens (who are spies) saw the giant hoover. She’d also suck in all the spies. She’d send them back to the planet where they belong, along with the pollution.
Felicity carried the huge hoover with Sapphire. Together, they started to suck in the pollution. But, as soon as they did, the spies started running. However, they soon were sucked right in too.
When they’d nearly sucked in all the spies and pollution there was one spy left who was determined to do his job. As they made their way over, Hobbit became a giant and ran over like a maniac who leaped to try and press the button that would release them and stop them being returned to their planet. Felicity turned the hoover and sucked in the last bit of pollution and Hobbit.
The vacuum was quite full now, so they sent it flying over to Pollutiohn.
Both Felicity and Sapphire turned into humans and told all the villagers their story of how they saved everyone.
By Auraelia, aged 7
The huge monument called school stood in front of me. All the other kids walked in through the wooden double doors, chatting to their friends. Similarly, I followed. Inside the school, I could see all the children doing what they would do everyday: applying perfume, playing with a ball, bottle flipping or, like me, just putting their bags in their lockers. Soon, I walked into Maths class, expecting my teacher to welcome me in. However, I was greeted to something totally different. My Maths teacher, Miss Ann, started to stare into space and ignore me. She was also saying “All hail Zorbak!”
Who was Zorbak? Thinking this was all a big joke, as my teachers often joked around a bit, I went to my desk and sat down with everyone else. However, the tannoy soon went off. It was our Headteacher, probably with news of the house points results. To everyone’s surprise, it wasn’t. Instead, she said the same thing as my maths teacher.
“All hail Zorbak!” they said together.
“Zorbak again?” I thought. “That’s weird.” Then, my teacher started to walk. Walk to the window that is…..! She climbed out and started to randomly dance. Everyone roared with laughter. However, she wasn’t the only teacher. All of the teachers were now outside, dancing like cheerleaders! The whole school laughed like hyenas. But that’s not all. They all came back in to our classroom, and started to throw chairs all around. The other classes came to watch the mayhem, as the teachers really started to go bananas! Then, as if out of nowhere, a weird creature fell through the roof. Bricks fell all around us, but no one was scathed. It was purple with tentacles as long as pythons. It also had a crown on its head. It was an alien king!
“I am Zorbak.” it said boldly. So that was who Zorbak was!!
“I have come here to take your teachers to my planet. However, I would like YOU as well!”
After hearing that, as quick as a flash, I took a bottle of perfume from one of my classmates desks and threw it at the alien. It shattered, spraying it all over Zorbak. He screeched like a vulture and soon disintegrated into a piece of dust. The teachers all shook their heads in confusion, as the whole school cheered for me and held me up. From then on, I was The Boy who Destroyed Zorbak. However, I will never forget the Day the Teachers went Bananas.
By Riyansh, aged 11
Hello, my name is WordHound and I’m not an ordinary dog as you might expect. I have a dirty dog bone that turns into a pen that writes in rainbow coloured led and I came from the man who invented whoopie cushions. My friend is WordOwl, my hobby is writing stories and I love to use good grammar.
I live in an ordinary kennel but inside it is a house. The owners don’t know that I have writing powers. They name me Mr. Doodles. They take me on walks and I write about them. One time, I wrote a story when a pigeon who was a super hero farted! I showed it to WordOwl and he laughed in hysterics.
In the middle of winter, an undetected suspect named AntiWriting Cat snuck onto the road and tried to steal all of the road signs but the police caught him. The cat suspects that I am an enemy, but I suspect he is…
One day, WordOwl and I were at the park and see the cat by the scary swings and chased it all the way to the kennel, all the way up the stairs and out of the window. We threw it to the ground so the cat had to go to extreme medical jail. We had a colourful, happy disco party after the cat was gone.
Some years later, the cat got out of jail and didn’t remember anything so he became a train driver. Toot toot! Now all of the animals know my secret identity and ability and I am writing about this adventure right now in front of all of them.
By Mattie, aged 8
When Ellie’s parents had to quarantine because of Covid, Ellie went to stay with her grandmother in her ten bedroom mansion.
Ellie hadn’t been to her grandmother’s before and was surprised to find how many expensive things she had. Jewellery, limo, and a helicopter. She had a large wardrobe in the hallway at the bottom of the stairs, which Ellie’s grandmother said, “Never ever open the door to the wardrobe.”
One night Ellie got up for a drink. She tiptoed downstairs, hoping not to wake her grandmother. Passing the wardrobe, she saw the door was slightly open. There was something glowing from within. She opened the door and saw a PURPLE PORTAL.
Am I dreaming, she wondered. She thought to call her grandmother, but remembered she wasn’t supposed to open the door. She stepped inside.
Ellie found herself in a small room with a sign saying Granny’s Secret Bank Robbing Room. Ellie thought, WHY IS MY GRANDMOTHER ROBBING BANKS? IS THIS A PRANK?
Ellie looked around the room and saw bombs, guns, and other evil things. Suddenly, there was the sound of someone coming down the stairs. IT’S GRANDMOTHER!
Ellie ran out of the portal and closed the wardrobe. She hurried into the kitchen and grabbed a glass of water.
Her grandmother stepped into the kitchen doorway and said, “What are you doing?”
“I was getting a drink of water,” Ellie replied.
“You should go back to bed now.” Grandmother said sternly.
Ellie went upstairs and grabbed her phone. She called the police and told them everything.
The next day Ellie heard a knock at the door. It was the police. She hurried downstairs and quickly let them in. She showed them the portal and all of her grandmother’s weapons. They arrested Ellie’s grandmother and sent her straight to prison.
By Holly, aged 10
One sunny day, Peter was reading in the school gazebo when suddenly, THUMP! Balls sprayed everywhere as a mysterious figure crash landed in the ballpit! This my friends, was no man, it wasn’t even a human. It was a runaway penguin from the circus! It had fired itself out of the big red cannon.
Now, Peter did not know this so he hid behind the nearest thing he could see which
unfortunately was a damp wooden post. The mysterious blob threw of it’s helmet hitting unfortunate Peter in the face and climbed out. It was a penguin! And it was a dust covered ragtag one too.
This black and white blob went up to Peter and shook his surprised hand and not letting go, pulled him back into the school building. I think it was the smell of fish that led the penguin to do his next stunt. Now coincidentally on that day was the only day in the whole week for fish and chips so when the blob’s nose guided him to the lunch hall, the penguin was more than excited. Everyone knew what he would do. There was no stopping it. The (less) dusty penguin jumped onto the worn out table and slid down it like it was some sort of waterslide! Knocking over dozens of plates as he did it. In total he stole three fish and a couple smacked him in the face.
Peter knew what would happen next. The kitchen! The boy sprinted to the backdoor as it was the closest exit. When running he would hear the occasional ‘AGGHH! IT’S A PENGUIN!’ and the odd CLANG of the penguin knocking over pans.
Peter eventually found the door only to see a food/banana skin covered penguin. It waited for Peter to clear it up and then waddled outside the school to outstretch it’s arm as if it was trying to grab something. A black and white Taxi pulled beside him. After a brief meep meep goodbye, It was off.
Louis, aged 10
I looked to the sky and saw opportunities. I looked to the sky and saw reassurance. I looked to the sky and saw infinite circles of possibility. However, the possibility of a penguin prancing a one-penguin parade in the purple sky was a rather extreme possibility.
The warm, summer sea breeze gently rippled around me. I heard a distant noise of gulls that seemed to be in another world. I was in the world of the deep realms of my imagination.
A distressed cry from the sky hauled me back into reality and out of the corner of my eye, I saw it. It had an elongated body and a wedge-shaped tail. Some may say it was grotesque – I say it was a wonder of the world. The shining white scale-like feathers on his tummy glinted in the beams of the smiling sun. The rest of its body was as dark as a deep shadow.
It’s beady eyes blinked just like mine before it was gone.
Maybe one day, look to the sky. Look for the wonders because one day they may come flying at you.
Daisy, aged 12
“And… Done! Ready for the next test, Mr Assistant?” I asked.
“Yes, Sir.” He replied.
“I made minor adjustments to the power supply so that it can handle more energy! It should be able to withstand more energy being put into it. OK, do the thing!” I commanded.
I sounded not as happy as I actually was, we would make history if this worked.
We put a McDonald’s burger on top and Mr Assistant clicked a few buttons. Seconds passed… nothing. Then out came a churning and from that tiny hole… came the Big Mac. We had managed to replicate a physical object! This is going to change the world we live in forever!
We no longer have to worry about buying food, running out of chargers, batteries and so much more. They’ll be laws in place of course. Like no replicating money or other things.
I can’t wait to announce this to the public!
Danso, aged 10
On bring a pet to school day
I will never forget
When Harry said come this way
And see my brand-new pet
Harry pulled on a long lead
And the ground began to rumble
Four hairy legs running at speed
And my brain became a jumble
A nose as long as a hose
And two huge tusks on its face
My eyes grew wide as he got close
You brought a mammoth to this place!
Yeah, I found him in my Granny’s shed
All frozen in ice and looking quite dead
I used a hair dryer to thaw him out
Who brought this beast I heard the teacher shout
It was me said Harry to the teacher
Isn’t he the coolest creature?
No said the teacher he’s eating my lunch
Yum thought the mammoth crunch munch scrunch
Just then the head teacher arrived in the room
What’s going on he said with a boom
Harry’s brought his pet the children said
The head teacher looked up and shook his head
He’ll have to go home said the teacher
Just then the mammoth used his trunk to reach her
And put her on his hairy back
Put me down right now she said giving him a whack
The mammoth ran off as fast as lightning
Ahhh screamed the teacher this is frightening
All of sudden he came to a stop
Teacher whizzed off his back into a pile of mammoth plop
Covered in poop the teacher cried
Harry take your pet back outside!
And that was a day the teacher would always regret
Letting Harry bring in his prehistoric pet
Max, aged 9
I am an astronaut and one day, whilst researching on planet Mercury, I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. Hovering through the white blanket of atmosphere a neon yellow ship emerged like a turtle from its shell. Out of it came a flourescent green creature.
It jumped down and landed beside me, offering me a slimy, gnarled hand. I stared out of my space vizor, fiery ash popped and buzzed around me like glowing fireflies leaving sunspots on my vision.
Petrified, I accepted the mysterious alien’s offer and held onto a squelching, slippery hand. “Wwhere are we going?” I stammered with confusion and feelings of dudgeon.
”To a place that a human eye has never seen before.” It answered matter of factly as I was strapped into the ship. I soon spotted faint buildings, all different shapes and sizes dancing on the horizon.
When we got closer ships started to emerge like dorsal fins poking through the wispy clouds. Scores of colourful aliens, identical to the one in the ship, were meadering through curved and spikey space trees.
Spotty luminous looking toadstools were gathered in several clumps. I even noticed a space cow: a slimy, green creature lumping along contentedly. The alien took me to a peculiar home where the alien family lived.
The house was the strangest house I’ve ever seen: the furniture was upside down. Rollo, their space dog had one eye, three tails, and two noses!
The alien offered me dinner. There were space cookies, cosmic bites, astro mallows and an exquisite fountain of chocolava. I was ravenous so I devoured the lot.
The alien showed me where I would sleep that night, it was a big room with furniture made of moonstone and the most enormous bed of the softest, warped fungi.
As I lay in bed, I felt pleasantly surprised at how delightful and generous the aliens were, I would never judge anything by how it looked again.
The next day, after a hearty breakfast of moon jelly and space sausages my new, unique friend took me back to Earth and the memories of my alien buddy and his fascinating world would stick with me for ever.
Theo, aged 10
WHAT ON EARTH
Have you been doing since birth?!
Every time you come around
You just go back
to your white freezing home safe and sound.
“Here’s your presents, and bye!”
And that’s basically all
before you’re gone
in the blink of an eye!
Where do you go after every December?
Does anybody remember?
Do you go and ski?
And how does nobody see?
Nobody can miss you in your big red coat!
And you never responded to any letter we wrote!
You’re just a fat, lazy, old goat!
Don’t just say “I’m so sorry”
And then turn your red-cloaked back with a lame story.
In fact, I think I’ve seen you once or twice
In Japan eating some strange-looking spice
Or maybe tanning on the beach
Having what looked like a peach?
Perhaps spending your time in overcrowded Morocco
Made you forget to say “HO HO HO”?
And if you care about your Santa-like royalty
You will have to earn my loyalty.
And so all I can say is you’d better
Answer my letter.
But you still deserve some thanks
Otherwise the presents would be paid by our banks.
(I still want to know where you go before and after
But that’s for another time
When I come up with some sort of rhyme)
So live in fear
For I’ll be watching you every year
Waiting for you and your reindeer
A child who will make things rough
Starting by asking for a lot of stuff
Viviane, aged 9
Short Story Inspired by Anti-Bullying Week
Drink it! Drink it! Drink it!
My ears buzzed with the echo. I tried to pull myself together but the muddy concoction was being forced down my throat. I started choking and had to kneel down on the grass. My head was spinning.
My name is Sam. I moved to Drakenham High about a month ago…and…well…I didn’t really fit in very well. Jordan Jacobs is the most perfectly popular kid in our year and when he decided to turn my life into hell, that was it. Today, he made me drink this sticky mixture of mud and dirt and God knows what else. I feel weird and dizzy. I don’t know what to do. I can’t keep living like this anymore.
I woke up the next morning feeling surprisingly energetic and leaped out of bed. Then, the memories of the day before, flooded back into me – refusing to let me be happy. I sulked down the stairs and gradually made my way to the kitchen. A clumsy tune drifted towards me along with the smell of homemade waffles. My mum walked over to the table I where I was sitting and put the waffles down in front of me.
“SSSSSSaaaaaaaammmmmmmm!”she yelled out, “come and have your breakfast.”
“I-I-I’m here mum,” I replied, confused and slightly nervous.
I waved my hand in front of my mum’s face who was now tucking into her own plate of waffles, no response. That was weird. A thought came to my mind instantly. Was I invisible? I’d always dreamed about it, but never expected it to actually happen. I pinched myself just in case. I was ecstatic to find that I was not actually dreaming.
Now, what would I do with this superpower?
Instantly, an evil plan formed in my brain. Before the good side of my brain could convince the bad side, I was rushing off to Jordan’s house.
I’ve never spied on anyone before and it gave me a tingling feeling in my tummy. Holding my breath and trying to suppress the rapid beating of my heart, I walked in through the, surprisingly, open door.
My heart dropped. What I saw in there, I wished I never had done. Like me, Jordan was living a life of camouflage and lies. Inside that dreadful room, was Jordan trying to console his mum, who was rolled up on the floor crying with not just one but many empty bottles of alcohol next to her.
Not everyone’s perfect. Not even Jordan Jacobs…
Madiha, aged 12
The un-pruned trees whispered secretively in the wind. The overgrown and dying rose bush tilted in the breeze. Unruly green grass, hidden by a thick blanket of brown crisp leaves crunched underfoot. The knotted vines were out of control, constricting the door handle so no one could get in or get out.
He found a small hole through the vines, he knew he would fit through it. James had always been bullied for his height. He had a disproportionately small body with long legs and short arms. He was the cleverest in his class, maybe even the school, but that didn’t mean anything. His hair was as matted as the vines which stood in the way of the door. His clothes were a ripped tragedy. Now he had somewhere to get away.
It was the kind of house that made you dream of ghosts and ghouls who want to kill you. The kind you would be dared to sleep in. If you just laid a finger on the rotting wood, the timbers would shake with rage. The panels which had once built the house up were now falling down and spitting out splinters. The eerie darkness filled the room with a spooky awe.
James could feel shadows looming around the walls. A sudden sense of fear overwhelmed him. He frantically tugged at the door but it was shut, vines had crept over it and locked him in.
Then without warning a knock came from within the walls….then another one. Shaking with terror he crept to the corner, another knock then sounded, James curled up hugging his knees, hoping he would awaken from this terrible living nightmare. He had to brave it out, he had to stay the night ! If he did, he may never be bullied again.
Maya, aged 10
The Tale of the Bird Who Changed My Life
Christmas. Our lounge had been smothered with Lego. My parents encouraged me to tidy-up. I needed a container. Luckily, searching beneath my bed I found an ancient brass-braced box.
I pulled the box from beneath the spider-infested bedposts. I shook the box. Nothing rattled or moved.
It appeared empty…
This box had lived in the darkest deepest corners beneath my bed. What horrors would I find if I dared to lift the lid, my imagination raced…
I took a closer look. Its patterned braces seemed, Victorian. They were as cold as ice and as dark as coal. Underneath the cobwebs and dead bluebottles were dark streams of polished wood that gave the box a greasy yet stylish look. It smelt like age. A rusty catch on the front proved that the box had been closed for a long time.
I flicked the catch; the box was open…
Fuelled by paranoia, caution oozing out of me, I took a look inside. There was nothing, literally nothing. It was like staring into a pit. I peered at it.
I was sure this box had a history of its own? Shrugging my shoulders, I persuaded myself it was an ordinary box. I ran downstairs, the box in my clutches and scooped up the Lego and poured.
I didn’t hear it hit the box…
I wearily put my head into the box. I saw the Lego disappear. I heard a creek of wood, the lid of the box was closing, then I heard a click, it all went black…
They’d searched everywhere. The boy’s parents had spent all their money desperately searching. They sold the house…
The house was in ruins, the mystery repelled buyers. The box remained shut.
“Click” the catch opened and a pale hand reached for daylight…
Ted, aged 12
What would happen if the internet suddenly disappeared?
It was a tedious day. Mum was shopping online. Dad was calling a colleague. My brother was on a Zoom call with his friend. I was trying to type my homework onto a computer. And then it happened. Our screens went black. Dead. Dead as a dinosaur. I confess we all had a bit of a nervous breakdown. Mum’s face was a smooth white crockery plate. I went ruddy with annoyance. I thought of Miss Baker with her dogged hands on her hips saying over and over again, “If you don’t submit it in tomorrow there will be consequences.” To be brutally frank with you, this is the worst day of my life. So, I set about trying to finish my homework…on paper. My pencil was uncomfortable to hold and the paper was too rough to write on. I sighed and looked around. Mum was going to the supermarket. Dad was trying to write a letter by hand and was clearly as impatient as me. My brother? Well he was going out to his friend’s house. Grandma was knitting on her threadbare armchair. She giggled like a naive young schoolgirl. “Just like the old days!” she whispered, smiling like a mischievous imp.
Eden-Rose, aged 10
I came back from school and my dog was there like always. His name was Max and he was the most loving dog in the world. But when I came back from school – he was not at the door – he was not in the sitting room. I said to myself, ‘he must be upstairs.’ So I went up and I saw him talking in my room on my tablet. There was my dog talking to other dogs!
He saw me and he tried to act dumb but I knew he was talking so I said ‘Why are you talking’ he said ‘woof’. So I thought I must have been wrong as I was tired after school (I mean jail) so I went to sleep.
Next morning, I saw my dog was downstairs and my tablet was gone so I want downstairs and he was talking on my tablet again so I went and said ‘I know you are talking’
Max said ‘woof’ and I said ‘I know you can talk so why not?’
Max said ‘Fine I will – There are you happy?’ I said ‘Why do you never talk to my kind’.
Max said ‘Because I am a special. I am a dog that can talk. There are like ten more of my kind’
‘Can you talk in dog language?’
Max said ‘only for ten minutes’ ‘ok – but what if you stop talking in dog language’ ‘People will take me away and you won’t play with me ever again’.
Max only talks to me now and his friends on the internet.
Edward, aged 9
Something I’ve Been Putting Off For Ages And I’ll Probably Never Do
I have been putting off a thing I wish to do for ages, I have never done it and probably will never do. That is making a bucket list! I have never made a bucket list for myself and maybe I will never do. A bucket list is a list of things you or I wish to do. I have been inspired to make one
after seeing many celebrities making one and creating goals for themselves and they motivate everyone to create one. They have made a bucket list for themselves and this inspires me to make one for myself. I have never been to make a bucket list and I cannot achieve anything now on my bucket list as the current situation won’t allow me. An epidemic called Coronavirus has spread all around the world and affected many places. Everyone is staying at home to stay safe. So, I cannot travel anywhere. There are many other things I would like to do. This also helps me to explore and do new things. Surfing, meeting new people, cooking, etc. are some things I would like to add. I like doing all these things. Travelling from cold mountains to hot deserts, would be very cool! Cooking new things and creating recipes would be very fun. Surfing in the waves of the seas on a hot day would be the best thing I have ever done. I look forward to make an adventurous, fun bucket list! I really hope, I could make one in the future!
Meenakshi, aged 11
When would you go in a time machine?
I really could use a time machine right now. I’d hop aboard and fast forward into the future. June 5th 2021 to be exact. Where hopefully I would find some escape from lockdown. What would the world be like then I wonder. Will everything have returned to the way it was before? Or will it be this new world where everyone is frantically washing their hands every two minutes while singing Happy Birthday? Will we forever have to draw chalk lines on the floor to make sure we don’t get any closer than 2 meters to another human being?
I hope to find a new ‘normal’, where I can step outside the front door again, without having to cross the road as if my neighbours have the plague. A world where I can see my friends again, cuddle my grandparents and have playdates with my cousins. A world that’s found a cure for Coronavirus.
I want that sense of being free again. I even want to go back to school! I want to be able to feel the warmth of the sand beneath my toes once more, and sense the waves lapping around my ankles as I squeal at its coldness. Without a care in the world. Finishing the day with an eruption of laughter at my little brother as he demolishes another teddy bear ice cream from the Hockings van, with a chocolate covered face to show for it!
The planet will have learnt lessons from Covid19. We’ll all be mindful and care for each other and help others when needed. We’ll continue to appreciate the NHS and key workers who help us every single day. We’ll cherish our family and friends more and have learnt to enjoy the every day little things that we have all missed so much.
Heidi, aged 9
What I’m Scared Of
GURGLE, GURGLE, GROAN, BURP!
I imagine what’s inside these winding pipes that stretch and turn around every room in my house. It’s the longest and skinniest monster, he lives in these pipes and every day makes noises to scare us, hoping that one day we’ll leave and he will take over our house with his spider legs and stick arms. Slowly but surely he’ll wiggle out of each pipe in the kitchen, bathroom and even through my bedroom radiator… then he will take control.
GURGLE, GURGLE, GROAN, BURP!
There he is again, not again! I’m lying in bed and he’s waking me. Letting me know he’s still here. Then again when I wake up in the morning, when I get home from school, when I’m eating my tea and then here I am a whole 24 hours later lying in bed with the same water monster noises reminding me of the control that he thinks he will eventually get. He’s louder this time. So loud that I can hear his spider legs pushing and sliding his sausage shaped body up the pipe from the bathroom up to the tank in the attic where he sits and relaxes when no one is home. I KNOW … tomorrow morning I will wake up early, I will wake up early. I will tip toe to the sink and I will get rid of him once and for all. I’ll do just that. My fingers slowly turn the tap clockwise. I hear GURGLE. Hahaha, here he is sliding down the pipe falling for my trap. Now I quickly turn the tap on and… Whoosh! The water shoots out and down the drain but wait! What!? There are no spider-like legs. No twig like arms. No sausage shaped body. Just water with tummy ache.
Freya, aged 8
My Weirdest Dream
My weirdest dream was when we were out in the the garden with our yummy picnic. Then some ants came and ate up our picnic but we had enough to make another picnic. The the pesky ants came back and then they ate it all up again. We did not have enough food to make any more and we were very sad. So we got ice cream instead, we were happy.
Isabella, aged 6