my second entry

Maht over at The Moon Topples had his second fiction-writing competition based on the theme “Growth”. Again, I submitted an entry shamelessly(borrowed from Seamus), hoping to gain more. Again, not totally satisfied with what I wrote, but thought it could be a very brief extract of something longer. Of course, I did not win anything. But I’m really glad that there are such opportunities for unpublished or novice writers like yours truly. The winning entries there are excellent. Go there and enjoy reading. Here’s mine:

The Mission

For the first time in twelve years, Farah could wake up from her slumber seeing the morning sun. She thought she was dreaming initially. She could still distinguish colours. The sky had finally cleared. It looked flawlessly blue. When was the last time I saw blue, she wondered with a faint smile. She checked the monitor that read “31 Jan 2674, 7:06 a.m., Marina, Singapore Sector”.

She pushed the green button. “Sustainability module disarmed,” a voice dictated. She pushed the yellow button. The capsule opened. She raised herself slowly from a horizontal posture and sat. Then with a rather mighty effort, she stood up.

The smell of fresh air exhilarated her and she gave her body a huge stretch. For a minute or two, she just stood there absorbing the rare snowless moment, eyes closed. The heat from the Sun not only warmed her physically, it actually spoke to her heart and soul. There is hope after all, she thought.

Farah opened her eyes and made a visual 360º scan round her capsule. Barring the thick layers of snow, nothing had changed a bit. The Sheares Bridge still stood mightily tall about a mile away. The Esplanade’s unique spiky rooftop still looked comical despite the snowcap it sported. The casino skyscrapers still dominated the whole landscape with their sheer size and millions of glass panes that reflected the sunlight brilliantly.

Then it dawned on her she was standing right in the middle of the snow-caked Singapore River. The storm must have taken her all the way here. She looked around again. She was alone.

She remembered the drill. She stooped and pulled out The Hub from a side compartment of the capsule. She pressed the power button on The Hub. Then, she held it with both her hands and stretched her arms. A purple laser beam scanned her eyes. “Farah Abdullah, T43556777G, female, aged 74. Please proceed,” read the monitor on The Hub. She then positioned The Hub directly above her head. “Scanning brain chip in progress, please do not remove The Hub,” a voice echoed. Seconds later, she could hear The Hub again, “Brain chip scanned. Message sent. Community activated. Please proceed to build community.”

Farah removed The Hub from her head, and kept it in a sling bag. She had the mission in mind. She was not looking forward to it, but she had to do it for the sake of mankind. She stepped out of the capsule and began trudging through the snow on the river.

Barely a minute later, she heard several beeps from The Hub. She took it out and stared at the monitor.

“Lee Teck Hong, T99574112Z, male, aged 17. Location: Raffles, Singapore Sector.”

“Charles Rajandren, T25872144A, aged 24. Location: Bangalore, India Sector.”

“Marco Paldini, T09866352C, aged 80. Location: Naples, Italy Sector.”

“Kevin Jones, T23234098M, aged 45. Location: New York, American Sector.”

Her heart sank when she read the next line, “No other surviving males within The Hub’s radar. Please proceed to build community.”

Published in: on Wednesday, May 16, 2007 at 4:42 pm  Comments (16)  

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16 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I definitely remembered your piece and enjoyed it. Those two things are no small goal to achieve for a reader. 🙂

  2. I’m really glad you enjoyed it, Jason. My writing is still evolving.

    Thanks for the link, too! 🙂

  3. nice story. revision is key and always troublesome. i find myself wanting to just get it done and then not satisfied with what it is in the end. and it’s because i need to exercise patience and care in the revision process and always revise. use a prcoess and follow it every time. slowly i learn

  4. I enjoyed your write but perhaps a little bit of editing.
    Good show!
    But opportunities for the writer aren’t few and far between, CS. They’re everwhere. In trade magazines, literary journals, it just depends on us at the end of the day. 🙂

  5. I really like this, CS.

  6. i’m glad you drop by, Andres. yes, revision is a tedious process and patience is needed to run it. i’m still learning too. but sometimes the more i revise, the more the story changes, and in the end, the story evolves into something completely different, something i had not planned for. hence, sometimes, i skip revision. anyway, thanks for making me think. 🙂

    i admit this piece needed relook, Susan. i knew it somehow before submitting it. will do a better job next time.

    i appreciate your comments, Marie. looking forward to reading your story once it’s done. no pressure. 😉

  7. Very special piece, CS – well done and keep at it – the more we write the more we improve.

  8. thanks, Atyllah! will go on, definitely! 🙂

  9. A great glimpse into the future CS. Nicely told and nice twist at the end. 🙂

  10. thanks, Seamus! 🙂

  11. This competition was a nightmare to judge. There were so many good entries and all stood out in different ways. Keep at it CS – we improve as writers with each word that is laid down.

  12. yes, Minx, i will keep working at it. though i’m a novice, i’m dreaming of writing a book! not sure it will work out. no harm dreaming and trying. 🙂

  13. Just want to second Minx’s comment. There were a ton of good entries, and you definitely should keep plugging away.

  14. Definitely, Maht! Thanks for your encouragement! 🙂

  15. Like the others have said there were so many good stories it was difficult to chose. You had a really interesting tale here and I definitely wanted to know more.

  16. i will work on it in due course, Miss V. 😉

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