Be inspired and come together to collect stories . Join a story challenge or create your own.

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What is the Story Challenge?

The Story Challenge is an exciting new opportunity where anyone can put out a call on to collect stories or text on a specific topic and turn them into a book. Storytellers from around the world can submit their entries, and the best 12-17 stories will be selected by the person who began the Story Challenge to create a unique book. Each story has the same length, a  maximum of 3 pages, which ensures all stories fit seamlessly into the book.

We love Story Challenges because they show how people are connected through their stories. There’s nothing better than a presentation where everyone reads their story – it’s like a modern campfire. For thousands of years, people have been sitting around campfires, telling stories and creating little shining points in the universe. We’re bringing back this magical campfire with the Story Challenge and connecting people in a timeless way.

How does participation in the Story Challenge work?

To take part, simply create an account on, if you don’t already have one. Then either add your story to an existing Story Challenge or start  a new Story Challenge yourself. It’s best to write directly on to, as each story can contain a maximum of 3 book pages and the platform will automatically show you when you reach this limit. To take part in a Story Challenge, your stories must be set to ‘public’. This makes the Story Challenge transparent and allows all participants to see the submitted stories. You can submit a story for several Story Challenges at the same time, but you should make sure they fit the respective Story Challenge description. All participants will be notified if their story has made it into the book as soon as the editor has selected the texts.

What do I have to do to start my own Story Challenge?

To start your own Story Challenge, create a complete profile on Think about a topic for your book and describe exactly what stories you’re looking for. You can give examples or write a first story yourself to give other authors some guidance. You can choose the time period: you have the choice between 1, 2 or 4 weeks to collect enough stories and texts. For the first Story Challenge, we recommend choosing a period of 4 weeks.

It is important to publicise your Story Challenge quickly to receive enough contributions. Once you have collected enough stories, select the best ones to be published in a book. Be sure to set clear criteria for selecting the winners and communicate these in your Story Challenge description.

How do you turn the selected stories/text into a book?

Creating a book from the selected stories is easy and fun. First, the Story Challenge organizer chooses the stories to be included and sends a draft to the selected storytellers. After their approval, we connect all participants so they can get to know each other and work on the book together – both via and in person or video meetings.

There is a clear division of roles: the editor is responsible for the title, the cover, the order of the stories, the design of the book, the dedication, the biographies and the book description. They can use existing images which have been added to a story or choose their own. The only thing the editor cannot do is change the text of other authors – only the respective writer can do that.

At the end, the editor obtains print approval from all participating authors. After print approval, the book can be ordered by all participants in their profile. This collaboration creates a unique book which unites diverse stories and voices of the participants while  conveying the feeling of being part of a wonderful joint book project.

What content can be brought together in one book?

There are no limits at – you can create any book together. It could be short stories, poems, cookery recipes or personal experiences… all languages and genres are welcome. Different genres can be mixed in a Story Challenge, which makes the book even more exciting.

Real-life stories work particularly well. Like the stories that used to be told around the campfire, they create a deep connection between people. Sharing experiences and adventures will inspire and resonate with others. So let your creativity run wild and help create a unique book that reflects the diversity and voices of all participants.

How are the rights regulated?

By taking part in a Story Challenge, you agree in principle to your text later being printed in a book. However, before it goes to print, you must expressly agree after you have seen the finished book. The editor cannot edit the text of other participants – changes can only be made by the authors themselves. If images are used, it is important to consider copyright and ensure all necessary rights have been obtained.

How is the authors’ fee distributed?

At, authors receive an author’s commission of 10% of the gross sales price from the 11th copy of their book sold, which is currently €1.80 per book. The entire fee for a Story Challenge book is initially paid to the publisher every six months, who then distributes it as they see fit. However, there is a fair and transparent bestseller clause: if a book sells more than 1000 copies, from the 1001st book sold, ensures the royalties are distributed proportionately to all participating authors.

Tips for quick and smart book creation
  1. Fun before perfection: Enjoy the creative process and don’t put yourself under pressure to achieve perfect results. Creativity flows best when it’s fun
  2. Take others’ wishes into account: An editor should consider the author’s concerns, but ultimately makes the decisions to move the project forward
  3. Schedule draft loops: Every book needs several rounds in draft status. Tweaking a book is part of the process, and perhaps someone will take on the role of editor to give the participants helpful tips. Or someone can be found to support the editor in selecting images and ensuring a harmonious and uniform design. However, perfection is not the goal – there is no such thing as a book without a single typo, and that’s perfectly fine
  4. Keep text public: As long as the book is being worked on and has not been finalized by, all text must be public. If possible, avoid making changes to the profile, as this makes the process unnecessarily complicated. You will receive a message as soon as the book has been published and can be ordered by you
  5. Define roles clearly: A clear division of tasks facilitates collaboration. The editor is responsible for the title, cover, order of the stories, design, dedication, biographies and book description
  6. Regular updates: Keep everyone informed through constant updates. Video meetings and face-to-face meetings can help to avoid misunderstandings and promote teamwork
  7. Wait for print approval: The final print approval should only be given when everyone is satisfied with the book. This ensures that the book meets expectations
  8. Be open to change: Remain flexible and open to adjustments throughout the process. Spontaneous ideas can often lead to the best results
In which languages can I post a Story Challenge?

At you can post a Story Challenge in many languages. The platform supports all languages written from left to right. There is also an integrated spell checker in the editor for German, English, Spanish, French and Italian.

If you would like to start a Story Challenge in German, please create it on the German page of For all other languages, you should use the English page. English Story Challenges will also be displayed on the German page, but only after all German Story Challenges and vice versa.

Are there any costs involved in participating in a Story Challenge?

The Story Story Challenge feature is completely free to use. If a book is created from the submitted texts, only the publisher must order at least one copy (€18 plus postage). Authors whose stories are included in the book can order the book directly via at special author conditions, but are not obliged to do so

Tip: A larger, collective order can sometimes result in more favorable prices. Here are the prices for authors:

  • 1-6 copies: €18 per book
  • From 7 copies: €14 per book
  • From 50 copies: €12 per book plus 3 free copies
  • From 100 copies: €10 per book, plus 3 fee copies
  • From 300 copies: €10 per book, plus 30 free copies

There is also the ‘MeinBuch@Thalia’ feature, where your book can be presented in one of the selected Thalia flagship stores for one month if you make a (collective) order of 50 copies or more at once.

Can errors be corrected at a later date?

Unfortunately, the ‘Reorder with error correction’ feature is not available for books created as part of a Story Challenge. This is because this function would only be possible if all profiles and stories are still publicly accessible on the platform, which is not always guaranteed.

However, there is an alternative: you can take the book out of distribution for a fee (€25) and recreate the anthology from the existing Story Challenge. This way you can make all the necessary changes and publish the book again.

If a lot of great stories were submitted that didn’t all make it into the first book, you can also make more books (one after the other) from the same Story Challenge.

Can I also take part in mybook@Thalia with a Challenge book?

Yes, this is possible as soon as you order 50 or more copies at once from and then select one of the Thalia flagship stores (in Berlin, Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Cologne, Leipzig or Vienna). Not only will we add 3 free copies to your order for book promotion, but we will also automatically arrange for the bookshop of your choice to order your book and present it at the Storyspot for at least a month – or longer if it sells the best. This is a great way to get your book noticed quickly right from the start and strengthen its presence in bookshops.

If you like, you can also visit your favourite bookshop and take photos for social media.

Can a Challenge book also be entered for an award, say, the Young Storyteller Award?

Yes, it is possible to take part in an award such as the Young Storyteller Award with a Challenge book. However, for readings in the finals, one person must be nominated to represent the book on stage and read a text. This person presents the entire team and reads one of the texts contained in the book.

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