Oct 2009

The lovely Nicola Morgan (ignore everything I wrote about her before) has said that I was next on the list to win a prize in her Hotel Chocolat Halloween Competition, and although I don’t know which of the two stories I submittted nearly won, I’m going to put one of them here. The other one suffered, in my opinion, from being cut down to a hundred words. I’m going to restore it to its original state and use it for something else.

Bye for now!

Time for a Backup

I stare at the screen, horrified. Instead of my document, large letters areCOOL CHAT E drifting, mingling. Suddenly they stop. COOL CHAT E, I read. Sobbing from the loudspeaker. Drops of liquid trickling down the screen. Tears? More drifting, stopping at ETCH COLA O. More crying. This must be my computer’s final fling before…. I close my eyes and picture years of unbacked-up work disappearing down the snakelike cables. Opening them, I see, EACH LOCO T. Weeping, howling. Drifting again. CHOCOLATE. From the loudspeaker, whining. I hurriedly stuff a piece of chocolate into the USB. “Mmmmmmmmmrgrmgrmmrmgrmmrmgrrrahhhhhhh.” My document returns.

*SOB* I didn’t win any chocolate in Nicola Morgan’s Hotel Chocolate Halloween Competition. This means that I have to disappoint the two people – Royal Holloway Girl and Gill – who were competing to be my nominee for the chocolate. Still, it also means that no one will fall out with me over this, and maybe they’ll find it in their hearts to love me anyway, despite my failure to assuage their cravings.
The winning stories are here.

The long and winding road
That leads to your door
Will never disappear
I’ve seen that road before
It always leads me here
Lead me to your door

I always loved The Beatles. I grew up with them. But I didn’t think much about the words in those far-off days….

I’m on that road; we all are. But each of us has to get past different hurdles on the way. I’ve just passed one – not just by being acknowledged as a writer, although that’s a big enough hurdle in itself, but also by having my blog discovered by more people, including people who know me but don’t know me. That still frightens me, despite all the praise and encouragement I’ve received. But I know it’s what I want.

Many thanks to everyone who said they liked my story. It makes it all worth the effort.

Have you passed any big hurdles recently?


First times are special, aren’t they. You remember them all your life. I remember my first day at school, aged five years and one week, even though ten… twenty… thirty… many years have passed since then. I remember my first boyfriend, my first baby and many other firsts.

Yesterday is also a day I’ll remember. The first time a story of mine has been published: http://www.metazen.ca/?p=915. A humorous story highlighting a pitfall of social media. And while I don’t want to turn this blog into one that brags about my achievements, this is the first time and I’m basking in the glory.

I have been published for the first time at http://www.metazen.ca/?p=915.

I’ll write more about this tomorrow. For now, this is all I can manage.

DO NOT under any circumstances enter Nicola Morgan’s Hotel Chocolat Halloween Competition. I have submitted my two entries and I intend to win, so make sure you don’t click that link and, even if you do, don’t send any entries of your own.

Not that I can actually win the chocolate *sob*, because I’m not in the UK, but I can nominate someone who is and will love me forever more.



The voice in my head shouts out loud,
But its sound isn’t heard by the rest of the crowd.
The voice in my head speaks in no tongue,
And yet its caustic words have stung.
The voice in my head says I’m stupid and dumb.
The voice in my head says I interest no one.
I try to tell it it’s got it all wrong,
But the voice in my head just sounds the gong.
“Go back,” it says, “and hide away.
Nobody wants to hear you today.”

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