The Great IPEM Short Story competition

Two IPEM members had a great idea: why not tap into members’ writing skills to create stories that can be used for outreach with children?

So now IPEM is looking for all you creative writers out there to pen a short story on medical physics or clinical engineering aimed at children for a new competition! Let your creative juices run wild and produce an original story of up to 1,000 words featuring some element of your scientific work or experience.

The competition is open to all IPEM members and there are two categories to enter, a story aimed at children under the age of 11 and those aged 11 to 16.

The competition was the idea of IPEM Trustee and Fellow Dr Anna Barnes and IPEM Fellow Jo Young, who thought it would be a great way to engage young people about medical physics and clinical engineering. 

The winning entry in each category, as decided by a panel of judges (which will include a professional writer and children from each age category), will be published in the December 2019 edition of Scope and on the IPEM website. In addition, up to six stories in each category will also be published on the IPEM website. These featured stories will all be made available to our outreach volunteers to use in schools or other outreach events.

So, what are you waiting for? Get writing for the Great IPEM Short Story competition!

Send your entries, marked "Short Story Competition – under 11", or "Short Story Competition – 11 to 16", to by no later than 30 June.


  • The deadline date for entries is 17.00 hrs on 30th June 2019. 
  • Entries must be entirely the work of the entrant and by submitting you are confirming that the work is your own
  • All entries are judged anonymously: please do not include your name on the document
  • Anonymous entries cannot be accepted.
  • Stories must include an element of scientific work or experience.
  • Entrants may withdraw entries from the competition by notification in writing
  • We will disqualify entries if they are over the word count of 1000 words
  • Amendments cannot be made to entries after they have been submitted, nor substitutions made
  • The judges' decision is final and they cannot comment on individual entries.
  • The stories will be judged by a panel consisting of members, children in the suitable age group and an external writer
  • By submitting your short story you grant IPEM the right (but not the obligation) to publish your story in print or online
  • By submitting your short story you grant IPEM the right (but not the obligation) to store your work indefinitely
  • Results will be announced during MPEC 2019
  • The competition is open to IPEM members only
  • Only one story allowed per person per category 


Guidelines for authors

  • There are two categories – for children under the age of 11 and those aged 11-16.
  • Entries should not have more than 1000 words.
  • The entries must be in English.
  • We need to receive your story as a pdf file. No hard copies, please.
  • Font size: 12 point,  Arial.
  • Page numbers are important. Make sure each page is numbered consecutively.
  • Please submit your story here: and mark the email “Short Story Competition – under 11”  or “Short Story Competition – 11 to 16”.
  • The main email text should include your full name and IPEM membership number (this information will not be passed on to the judges). This information should NOT appear in your submitted entry pdf.
  • Do not submit illustrations to accompany your story; text only, please.

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