Writing Competition!

What’s That Thing?

How do I enter?

First, pay your £10 entry fee. It’s on the Pay pal page and you can pay as a guest if you do not have a Pay pal account.

Then, we will send you the terms and conditions, plus application form.

All you need do after that is write your fabulous story ( and draw or paint a picture if you wish) and return it to us with your completed forms. We are all very excited at Pocket Money No shows to launch the ‘What’s That Thing?’ Competition and Anthology. We can hardly wait to see your wonderful stories and pictures in print!

After 14th May 2022 we will judge the best stories and let you know if you have won. This will take about 6 weeks. You are all winners, because we are publishing your story in our Anthology ‘What’s That Thing?’ Then everyone can read your story, no matter who they are, or where they are.

‘Why do we have to pay £10?’ I hear you say.

The answer is simple. Every penny that is paid in entry fees is being donated to Yn Draamey (pronounced In Drama- it’s Manx for ‘the theatre’ ). This is an amazing community theatre charity project on the Isle of Man (an isle in the middle of the Irish Sea) which helps everyone on the island to access theatre training absolutely FREE! Yn Draamey thinks everyone should have an equal chance to succeed, and theatre training is an invaluable tool in enabling all people to do just that.

Theatre training helps students to gain confidence, learn self-discipline and become successful, regardless of age, sex, ethnicity, background or abilities. Your entry fee not only helps you, it helps Yn Draamey Community Theatre too; and all the people who benefit from it, so

Here are the terms and conditions plus some other stuff. Sorry, it’s a bit long.


Entry fee: £10




‘What Is That Thing?’

Hello Dear Teacher, Parent or Carer, budding author.

This is the first ever writing competition of publishers, Pocket Money No Show. This is a new type of publishing house, encouraging young readers to rely on their own imagination instead of simply absorbing the pictures created by others. This means that the body of our books do not contain any image which might prevent young people visualising for themselves.

 Pocket Money No Show is a publishing house designed to get young people using their own imaginations, instead of the received images so prevalent in social media/games and many books designed for children and young adults.  Our books are inexpensive too, so children can afford to buy them with their own pocket money.

To launch our new venture, all the stories submitted in the ‘What’s That thing?’ Competition will be featured in our first children’s three part anthology, ‘What’s That Thing? regardless of winning a prize.


There are two reasons:

  1. The first is that we have all been startled and dismayed to witness the effects the last couple of years of lockdowns, and the threat of illness, have had on our youngsters, and indeed, on their parents, carers, siblings, and teachers.

The Covid 19 pandemic has left a lasting, negative impression. Thankfully, the outcome has not been as extreme as we at first feared; nonetheless, that threat of imminent danger has profoundly affected most of us. Young people are impressionable; many are now afflicted by a sense of hopelessness, a feeling that bad things can happen that are completely outside their control.

The role of the arts in ameliorating this damage is well documented and understood. The ability to escape the negativity that now seems to haunt society is crucial to the recovery of the mental and emotional wellbeing of us all, but especially young people.

Many have sought solace in the various genres of the creative arts, but by far, the most easily accessible has been deciding on a story or poem, then writing it down. Research shows that this simple pastime takes people of all ages to their happy place. And this brings me neatly to the idea of creating an anthology of our children’s work. I distinctly remember the first time my work was published, and the thrill it gave me.

And more than that, the confidence that comes from knowing you can create something which may change people’s lives. Sometimes readers relate to a character thought up by an author, or a situation that occurs in a story. Sometimes reading someone else’s work releases emotions that generate peace, hope, and healing. Often, others are inspired to write too once they have encountered an interesting story.

We at Pocket Money No Shows want to read their stories. And then we want to publish them so that others can read them too.

  • The second reason is to support Yn Draamey Community Theatre. This wonderful new Manx charity provides performing arts training to all, irrespective of their personal circumstances. Theatre training enhances the opportunities of all who participate; it creates confidence and a ‘can do’ attitude which promotes success.

 By writing a story, and paying their competition fee, aspiring Manx writers make an invaluable contribution. Thus, their creative talents are enabling the creative talents of others.

So, this is the idea…

  1. Write a story! The genre is: FICTION. This means that the entire thing is made up. The story, the characters, the setting; nothing is real, it all happens inside the head of the writer, that’s you…who then writes it down for others to read.
  • THEME: One day you discover a Thing that you have never noticed before. You don’t know where it came from; you might not even know exactly what it is. Should you keep it or try and return it to its owner? The Thing you find could be something completely ordinary; or something mysterious and unidentifiable. This is your story now. Tell us what happens next. There is a rule though; you must include the phrase ‘what is That Thing?’ in your story, although it does not have to be the title if you can think of something better.

Age 7-10 years = 500 – 750 words. (Junior)

Age 11-13 years = 750-1500 words. (Middle School)

Age 14-18 years = 1000-3000 words. (Senior)

  • PICTURES: If you would like to illustrate your story the resolution needs to be between 300 and 450 DPI. Pictures can be photographs (only of things, not people). They can also be drawings, but they must be your own work and not copied from somewhere else; that’s the same rule for drawings, paintings, or photographs.
  • Anyone aged 7-18 years can submit a story.
  • Documents must be typed in a Word compatible file using double line spacing and good margin widths.
  • On the title page give yours/your parents/carers name, address, phone number and email address, story title and word count.
  • Include the name of the author (this can be just your first name if you prefer; it can also be a pen name).
  • Forward your submission to:


So then what?

Every entry will be read so that a decision can be reached regarding the winning entries. There will be three editions based on the different age groups. Each age group will receive a first, second and third prize.

Then we will let you know if you have been successful, and a permission document will be emailed to you. As soon as we receive permission to publish, the complicated process of editing and compiling the anthology begins. This will take about 3 months. We are aiming to publish on or around 25th July 2022. This means that members of the public can buy the book containing your story!

Terms and Conditions

Please read the terms and conditions of entry with great care.

  1. If your word count is too high, we will edit your story to the correct length. If anything in your writing detracts from the quality of the work, we reserve the right to amend it, but only where absolutely necessary.
  2. Pocket Money No Show reserves the right to delete any inappropriate language.
  3. We cannot accept any late entries; please ensure your submissions reach us in good time.
  4. You can submit up to three different stories, on the condition that they are all completely different.
  5. You cannot submit a story which has been printed elsewhere, and the submission must be all your own work. There are serious legal ramifications if you steal someone else’s work.
  6. If you prefer to submit your story under a pen name, your wishes will be respected, but please put your real name on the submission so that we know who to send the prizes to.


Why does an entry fee need to be paid?

This is because the ‘What’s That Thing competition is to raise funds for Yn Draamey, a new Manx charity for the education and training of aspiring performers. Being a member of Yn Draamey is completely free of charge, and gives participants access to professional training in all aspects of performance.

The entry fee is £10 per story. Your entry fee covers the winners’ prizes. After that, the entirety of the profit, after prizes have been paid, goes to Yn Draamey Community Theatre.


Simply complete pay the entry fee, complete and submit your application, and send your story. Upon receipt the parent/carer of each author will be sent a release form. Our team will then assess the stories, correct and amend where necessary, and prepare the anthology for publishing.

What’s That Thing? Writing Competition

Click the Pay pal button and submit your fee. Then send us your application form. We can hardly wait to read your story! Don’t forget, we need it on or before 14th May 2022. Email: noshowpocketmoney@gmail.com


All contributors will be sent a proof of their amended/corrected story, and an explanation of the corrections.

The anthology, ‘What’s That Thing’ will be published on Amazon Direct Publishing, and each author informed of the publishing date.

Thank You!


This could be YOU! Reading your own story!

And don’t forget to tell everyone else. Let’s see how many ‘Things’ we can think up…

Here’s the link to download the application form: