‘Under The Sea’ Writing Contest 2018

Mermaids! Salties! Be-Llyr-vers! Maidens!

Josie Demuth and Debra Goelz’s ‘Under the Sea’ writing contest is back for the fourth year running, and it’s bigger, better, and shinier than ever! Oh, and spoiler alert: The celebrity judge this year is a New York Times Bestselling YA author whose upcoming fish tale has all at the UTS towers reeling with excitement!

sea mystical view

We cannot wait to read your briny tales of Adventure, Romance, Horror, Mystery, Sci-fi, or even Self-help!

Joking! As much as we could all benefit from your pearls of undersea wisdom, no self-help this year. But any of the others would be great!

Here are the Rules:

a. Your protagonist, love interest, or antagonist can be a merperson OR your story may simply be set under the sea (but please make it a little bit magical).

b. While your story can be any length, the judges will only consider the first 2,000 words in making their decisions. If your story is the beginning of a longer work, please provide a short synopsis. (It won’t count in the word limit.)

c. Entries are due by August 31st. Finalists announced September 7th. Winner crowned September 14th.

d. Stories can be new creations or not. They can be tales you entered in previous years as long as you’ve made substantive edits since then.

Who Are the Judges?

Prepare for a gigantic splash as we reveal this year’s panel of awesome and dazzling judges …

For the first round:

The Hosts: 


Former winners of the ‘Under The Sea’ contest:

Kristin Jacques (krazydiamond) – Winner 2015 – Two-time Watty winner who has published stories in multiple anthologies and has an upcoming fantasy novel with Sky Forest Press.

Tiffany Daune (TiffanyDaune) – Winner 2016 – Her Siren Chronicles trilogy was published by Oftomes Publishing and is soon to become a game on Chapters.

Christine Owen (Christine_Owen) – Winner 2017. Her story Home School Hair was published in 2016 by Simon & Schuster in the anthology Once Upon Now.

Mermaid Enthusiast and all-around amazing author:

SJMoquin (Skeaks7) – A Wattpad featured author who writes fantasy and science fiction with a mix of adventure, action, and sweet romance.

For the win:

Under The Sea Writing Contest2018 Danielle


1. The six finalists can pick from a range of prizes, including a chapter edit by Debra or Josie, a mer-extravaganza book bundle or a beautiful mer-mug. They will all also receive a simultaneous shout-out on social media from the judges.

2. The winner’s story will receive the golden “Under the Sea Badge”, a tsunami-style shout out from the judges both on here and on their social media platforms (reaching hundreds of thousands of readers), and will be included on Wattpad’s “Stories Under The Sea” reading list.

To Enter:

If you are not on Wattpad, simply send your story, or a link to your story to

If you are on Wattpad tag your stories #UnderTheSea2018. And make sure you follow Josie and Britt!

May the cods always be in your favour!



Had a great time chattering on the panel at the Wattpad LonCon2015, all courtesy of lovely Slave Days author Vic James. The event took place in December at Foyles, SoHo.


Panel: (from left to right) Owain Glynn, Molly Knight, Amelia Scott, Josie Demuth, Rita S Kovach

Pics: ‘Most successful authors tell you how to do it’ panel (from left to right) Owain Glynn, Molly Knight, Ammelia Scott, Josie Demuth and Rita S Kovach

Panel (from left to right) Molly Knight, Amelia Scott, Josie Demuth, Rita S Kovach




e-novella, The Guest


I have put my debut e-novella ‘The Guest’ up on Kindle, Amazon.

It is (according to some nice people)….

“Derren Brown on the pull… the author deserves credit for espying this bold and relevant theme and fashioning it into a narrative that often moves with impressive momentum.”  Headpress, The Gospel according to unpopular culture

“A promising indication of an ability to explore the human psyche and its propensity to be manipulated by those around us.”  Granta 

‘Suskind meets Sweet Valley,’ The brixton poet

The Guest is a kind of  urban gothic-psycho-romance is about what happens when a dangerous and highly disturbed individual learns how to operate powerful psychological machinery.

Loaded with ‘weapons of mind control’ (stealth hypnosis and seduction technique) as well as his ‘sacred armory’ (a total lack of conscience), Gideon Gollightly poses under a collection of different guises, depending on the victim of his deceit. As a hopeless busker, his survival often depends on earning fast cash on the underground seduction circuit, occasionally mentoring unappealing clients on how to unlock the minds of attractive women. One day he meets April, a wealthy ‘hippy chick’ at Kings Cross station and sets about brainwashing her to suit his sordid and dysfunctional needs.

The Guest is a story about somebody who doesn’t play the game of life but who cheats, even when he is suddenly hit by a faint yet alien sensation of guilt and love…