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Tutankhamun is in the Wardrobe

Updated: Sep 27, 2023

Seeing your work published is one of the greatest things that can happen to you as a writer and last weekend I had the joy of seeing one of my own short stories published in The Kleksograph - An International Review of Arts and the Subconscious.

The story explores the power of a child's imagination through the story of a young girl, who endures a terrifying experience, after watching a documentary on the curse of Tutankhamun.

I wrote the story in 2021, when I decided to write a series of short stories for my tenth NaNoWriMo challenge. NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month is a world-wide challenge that takes place every November, for which writers attempt to write 50,000 words of a novel in 30 days.

At that time, members of Colchester WriteNight - a writing group I've been a member of since 2011 - were holding online write-ins, for which we worked together based on prompts, to support one another through the somewhat lonely task of producing 50,000 words in 30 days. The prompt that was set brought to mind the way, when I was a child, my imagination would generate scenarios, which were sometimes utterly terrifying, and the result was 'Tutankhamun is in the Wardrobe'.

The Kleksograph is based in Belgium and is edited by Peter Van Belle, who has published poetry and short stories in the US, Ireland, New Zealand, Canada, Belgium, and the UK. The Kleksograph "seeks to explore and celebrate art where the membrane between it and the subconscious is at its thinnest. Consequently the works in this magazine can’t be termed realistic. At the same time, however, it’s not the intention to publish works of magical realism in the conventional sense: where a conscious effort is made to subvert the expectations of realist fiction. Yet magical realist or surrealist writing or visual art isn’t automatically excluded."

I previously had my poem 'The Muse' published in Issue 2 of The Kleksograph, back in 2020, which I was delighted about. 'The Muse' describes the sometimes frustrating process of seeking inspiration. When I heard that the publication was seeking work for Issue 12, I decided to submit 'Tutankhamun is in the Wardrobe', which embodies a similar aspect of the subconscious mind, as imagination and inspiration are obviously linked. I was over the moon, when I heard that it had been selected for publication and would like to thank Peter Van Belle for believing in my work twice.


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