My Writing Journey – International Short Story Competition – January 2017

  Write us a 1000-word story about your journey as a writer. Make it funny, quirky and/or inspirational. We will publish the best story in our quarterly newsletter and on our blog. Plus the winner receives $200 (R1000 or £100). Entry is free and entrants are welcome from all over the globe. Send your story to     Closing date: 12 pm 31 January 2017 Previous winners:    Full Circle by Natalie Swain - winner September 2016 The Hundredth Day by Do Hyun Kang - Winner July 2016 The Writing Lobe by Eileen

The Writing Lobe

By Eileen Kennedy   Scientists say there’s a specific region of the brain dedicated to writing. Somewhere between the prefrontal lobe and the hippocampus is the writing lobe. Everyone has a writing lobe. I like to think when I use mine, my brain is flooded with sane chemicals and that’s why writing is a hobby I’ve never been able to give up. I’m only 19; nevertheless, I have a story to tell about writing and me. Naturally, at first I was illiterate. I

MAGIC – by Thorne Busakwe

  I was five years old, hugging the floor of my mother’s little shack, gunshots ringing through the air. I was too young to understand the violence going on outside, but I felt the terror pouring from my mother like a physical thing. I sobbed when her arms shook around me, then wailed uncontrollably when I saw the tears in her own eyes. “Shush!” she whispered harshly. Her voice was filled with panic. It only made me cry harder. I didn’t really

My Writing Journey – by Nkaela Mocumi

My favourite singer once told an interviewer that he started singing at the age of four. He said that by the time he was eight, all he wanted to be was a musician. He now has more hits than he remembers and more awards than he can count. I sometimes wish my writing journey was that tidy. I don’t remember having any special skills at the age of four. To be honest, life before my sixth birthday is a blur. My

My Writing Journey – By Alison Benge

  It wasn’t always writing that I loved. First there was the sensory world of writing: cracking the spine on a new notebook, ink flowing across a fresh page, lens-less glasses on the end of my nose. I wrote my first story, an epic tale starring my teddy bear, because I liked the clacking of the keys on our first computer. Most of my early stories were born from this sensory preoccupation. They emerged naturally throughout my childhood, mostly unnoticed. When I

My Writing Journey – by Françoise Lempereur

  Writing is not something I do; it is something I can’t do without. My journey as a writer began at the tender age of eight when I submitted my story entitled “The Ladybirds” to the national weekend newspaper. To my surprise, it was published, together with my childish illustration of Larry and Lucy Ladybird and their two children. They were a happy family, something I longed for from an early age. I was delighted by my success as a published writer. Some years

All the way up to Cairo: a writer’s journey – by Adriaan Odendaal

I was always hesitant to tell people that I want to be a writer. At one point even I rolled my eyes when I heard myself saying those words: “I want to be a writer”. “Oh?” they would reply with raised-eyebrow scepticism. Maybe it’s because I still deal with the generation that went to university purely for vocational purposes: become a lawyer, a doctor, a teacher. I remember back when I had to tell my aunts and uncles, sitting in their

Born to be a Writer – by Michael Taylor

  The city is pretty… These were the words I wrote in the first attempt I made of a poem after moving to Johannesburg, South Africa as a teenager. I was born in Klerksdorp, and attended Klerksdorp Primary School where I was voted “most likely to be an author” at the young age of nine. My stories and poems had always received great acclaim from teachers and parents.  For as far back as I can remember, I needed to write. From

Scribbler’s Progress: my writing journey – by Trish Nicholson

  Scribbler’s Progress – my writing journey by Trish Nicholson My most productive period as a storyteller was between the ages of three and five years. I hid for hours in the bathroom, squabbling with my characters. Sebastian was there too: we were inseparable. He sat on the floor, ears pricked, tail wagging as if he understood every word. Being an only child, he was my sole critic for a long time. Then one day, the relatives came for tea. There were frantic preparations. Clothes,

The Other Woman – by Amanda Bidwell

I liken my passion for writing with the exuberant style in which I tackle housework. I'll admit that ultimately writing gives me more joy than the latter, but there is also something very satisfying about an empty laundry basket. The trouble with this comparison is that I only have room in my life for one at a time. This can lead to some serious inner tension and often I feel as if the two are fighting for my attention. If I

In Search of the Poetic Impulse – by Ross Fleming

  I will never forget my first published poem. Well ‘published’ may be a loosely applied term, but it was certainly visible to anyone who happened to walk past the passenger-side door of my Father’s brand new Kombi. If you were there in our street on my 7th birthday, you would have seen, scratched into the shiny green duco, evidence of my first excursion into total, passionate honesty: I KIST EMILI SMITHIRS. Sadly, my creative expression of beautiful, abandoned joy  did not enthrall my

The Writer in the Closet – by Eleanor Talbot

  I’ll be honest. I don’t really consider myself a writer. John Steinbeck is a writer. Cannery Row is so effortless and quiet that you can hardly feel yourself reading it. It’s as if you are sitting in a comfy chair with someone telling you about a set of lives been and gone. By comparison I am simply an individual who possesses the ability to hold a pen. The hope is that one day the light of the Almighty, if she’s