The 500 Words competition, created by Chris Evans on his Radio 2 Breakfast Show, is now one of the most successful story-writing competitions for kids in the world, and helps to get children excited about reading and writing. This year there were a staggering 135,000 brilliant entries - a new record.
The 500 Words' panel of judges are Charlie Higson, Francesca Simon, Frank Cottrell Boyce, Malorie Blackman and Honorary Judge, Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall.
The winning stories were announced on Friday 8 June at the live final event at Hampton Court Palace. You can watch the stories being read aloud by celebrities on the BBC website.
You can also read all of the shortlisted stories for this year on the BBC website. There are two different age categories, and there are 28 stories in each group. These tales make great bedtime stories, and are fun for all the family.
Every year we are amazed by the imagination and creativity of the stories we read. Annie, one of our team of dedicated judges, has been keeping track of the most popular story themes that we come across, and these were her findings:
"Once again, the writers have shown how connected young people are to big news events and the world around them. Last year saw lots of stories about the refugee crisis, and while this theme continued in 2018, by far the biggest topic was the environment. Recycling, natural disasters and, slightly alarmingly, the end of the world loomed large over the entries. Unsurprisingly, the animal kingdom also remained a popular trope, with dogs, cats, birds (especially seagulls) and wolves popping up again and again. Entrants were also preoccupied with portals, with a lot of protagonists being sucked into games, mirrors and computers to discover new worlds..."
Over 100,000 children take part in the competition each year, and all of the stories are first read by brilliant teachers and librarians. Then, the team at The Reading Agency read over 5,000 of the top stories and helped the BBC decide which went through to the final. We love reading the funny, exciting and creative stories that kids from the ages of 5-13 have written.
Read or listen to all of the stories in the final.
Do you know any children who entered the competition this year? Share your thoughts with us on Twitter using #500Words.
Meet some of our judges and find out why they like being involved.