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I’m Going to be an Author

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I’m Going to be an Author | story.one

I was aged 10 and we’d been given a task to write a story. Characters and plotlines all came pouring out of my mind, down my hand and out through my pencil.

Taking a moment to consider a sentence, I looked up and suddenly noticed how all of my classmates had not only finished drafting up their stories, but they’d also transferred their creativity into their neat, official exercise books. I was still composing my masterpiece in my rough book.

It was nearly morning break and I’d spent far too much time inmy fantasy land. I know the story had a dog in it. That’s all I can remember about the plot. The most vivid memory I have is of the panic I suddenly experienced as I became painstakingly aware that I needed to get the story, not only finished, but also written up neatly in my exercise book by the time the bell went. I needed to bring the story to a close, and fast. I halted the charactersmid-action, with some incredible tangent to the plot, and I brought my tale to a very abrupt ending.

There were just minutes for me to write up my work before break time began, and there were two very important reasons why I couldn’t miss the short interval between lessons. One, of course, was that I wanted to go and play with my friends. The second, and far more vital reason, was that my wonderful mom had packed me a tasty bag of crisps to eat as my mid-morning snack. No break meant no scrumptious delight to keep me going until lunch.

I picked up my neat exercise book, grasped my pencil firmly between my fingers, and I scribbled faster than the speed of light. The irony was lost on me that the final piece looked like a car wreck, with my rough book version being the far neater of the two.

The bell went and I was scrawling away with no time to breathe. ‘Oh Lindsay,’ Mrs Collins said, looking over my shoulder. ‘You’ve written so much. Just get it written up in your neat book and you can go for break.’

I could hear mycrispscalling my name, taunting me from my bag just outside the classroom. This felt like some awful punishment for disappearing off into a make-believe land instead of just completing the task as requested.

Now totally on my own except for the teacher, I blasted through to my very brief finale. I stood up quickly to hand in my messy neat work and I prepared myself for a telling off.

I’d written far too much, I hadn’t completed the work on time, and my handwriting was an absolute disgrace. Staying in at break time was never something good children did and I awaited the lecture. However, as I looked up my teacher had a massive smile across her face. I wasn’t expecting the smile, and I absolutely wasn’t ready for the words that followed.

‘Well done, Lindsay. This is great work. You’ll be an author one day.’

A moment of pride surged through me. It sounded so grown up, so professional. I could be an author. No, I was going to be an author.

From that moment on my love of writing became an ambition to be a writer. As I scurried out to relieve my desperately lonely bag of crisps, I’d also scurried onto a new pathway in my life.

© Lindsay Woodward 2021-06-09

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