A CHILDREN'S author met young writers and gave them tips on how to write a winning story.

Fantasy writer Garth Nix was signing books at Waterstone's bookshop in The Glades shopping centre, Bromley, on May 3.

The 43-year-old Australian shared the secrets of his craft with writers thinking about writing a story for the News Shopper sponsored Young Author Competition.

The father-of-two said inspiration for a story came from asking questions, such as "what if?" and "what might happen next?".

He suggested starting by introducing a character and a situation, finding a complication and resolving the problem in the conclusion.

He added: "Always make an effort to finish a story, even if you think it's rubbish.

"You can always go back and edit and rewrite a story to make it better."

The competition, organised by The Glades, is open to children aged seven to 16.

Aspiring authors need to write a story of no more 300 words about teddy bears for young readers.

The closing date for entries is August 27.

To find out more information and download an entry form, visit theglades.uk.com or newsshopper.co.uk/leisure