A CHILDREN’S author is launching a UK-wide competition encouraging children to pen a new festive story for inclusion in a winter inspired book.

Sam Hay, author of the Undead Pets series of books, has partnered with cartridgesave.co.uk to stage the competition, which is open to children aged between 4 and 11, inviting them to write a short story (less than 200 words) or poem inspired by winter or Christmas.

The very best 50 entries from across the UK will be published in a special free to download e-book, released in December 2015. In addition, one overall winner will receive £1,500 for their school to spend on books or writing equipment, with two runners up prizes of £250, plus bag themselves a stocking packed with festive treats worth £50.

Children, parents and teachers can get hints and tips from Sam Hay, plus full details of how to enter at www.cartridgesave.co.uk/writechristmas.