STOR14S shortlist announced: Yahoo short story contest voting is now open

Just 1,500 words – no more, no less.


UPDATE: Voting is now closed, and the top 14 stories have been chosen. The podcast will launch on June 8, and you can listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify. And we’ll be using this show to help raise money for the wonderful work of GEANCO. Join us in supporting their COVID-19 prevention efforts in Nigeria.

Get ready to vote! Here are the top 20 entries to the Yahoo STOR14S writing contest. Show us how much you like each of these story ideas, and we’ll turn the 14 most popular into a free podcast. You can show your appreciation for as many stories as you like until May 4. Your votes will make up 60% of the final score for these stories.

1. Aargh! There’s a monster in my school!

Mark Cowling has a story about Boris, who is super excited about his first day at a new school for both monsters and human children. But is Evergreen School ready for its first Yeti student?

2. Mr Oviarty's Mysterious Bookshop

Eleanor Launchbury’s story is about Mary Brookes, a young woman who gets an unusual gift after she stumbles into an unknown part of town.

3. The Emperor's Daughter

Michael Jituboh has written a story about a great African emperor who sets out to choose the perfect husband for his daughter, and the extraordinary lengths one short man will go to for love.

4. The Runaways

Cathryn Norris presents the story of Lottie, who witnesses the struggle of her new school teacher Miss Willow to control a trouble-making class. Could Lottie have a solution to restore order?

5. Being Mean

Monika Nagy tells the story of a friendly goblin named Blinn who must team up with the school bully Bragg to find their way home.

6. Magic Squirrels

Taylor Friedlander brings us the tale of Frankie the Dachshund, who learns the magical truth about squirrels after a fateful walk with her beloved owner Carl.

7. Jack's Dream

Chantal Jackson-Barchan has written a story about young Jack, who wakes up in his garden to find he can understand all the birds, bees and insects in his backyard – and they all need his help.

8. Polly Tumpkin’s Pumpkin

Steven Kent introduces Polly: a young woman with a passion for pumpkins. But to win this year’s pumpkin growing contest, Polly will need to borrow her grandma’s pants... and possibly a helicopter.

9. Matty Hides in Midgeton

Dee McLellan tells the story of Matty, who must move to his uncle’s home in Midgeton when his mum has to work overtime at the hospital during lockdown. A game of hide-and-seek uncovers a mysterious tunnel.

10. The Diary Of Primrose Goldie Gold

Kay Snow opens the diary of Primrose Goldie Gold whose tenth birthday party turns into an amazing adventure, better than a party, birthday cake or presents.

11. Elevator to the Moon

Eric Hunter takes us to a strange future, where a group of friends must sneak their way onto an elevator bound for the moon.

12. The Brightest Star in The Forest

Yvette Naden presents the story of a young boy who escapes the home he is being held captive in to go in search of the missing stars.

13. Dragons Like Shiny Things

Sharon Butters introduces us to young Jack, son of the chief. Today is an important day in their village: Jack and his peers must race each other to the dragon’s lair and bring back gold.

14. The Sunshine Cake

Grant Dudson tells the story of Paul, a 14-year-old boy, who is approached by a series of interesting characters in a café who set out to change his perception on life as a whole.

15. The Dog that would be a Prince

Lewis Grant introduces a hero vet who works with the police to rescue an abandoned dog, and how his family helps it heal and find a new forever home.

16. Flying Colours

Angela Young explains how the beautiful African Starling birds, who were once completely black, came to earn their colours from the wind as a reward for their great bravery.

17. And So It Began

Charlotte Marsh takes us on a magical adventure with a little girl named Lucy and her Grandma, who must find the sun to end a huge snow storm.

18. A Snowy Saturday

Martine Caroline takes us to the Surrey Hills, where a family of three who have recently moved to the area are celebrating their first Christmas away from London.

19. The Legend Of Dai Bach

Sarah Gallego tells the story of 12-year-old Evelyn Richards, a Liverpudlian evacuee in a North Wales coastal town where a homeless man is about to become a mysterious hero.

20. George’s Gifted Guitar

Polly Sanders introduces wannabe musician George Daniels, who receives a busted old guitar from his grandad. But when he touches it, very special things begin to happen.