Imposter Syndrome #flashfiction

This week at the Carrot Ranch, Charli Mills challenged writers to In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about an author’s chair. It can belong to any author. Where is it located and why? Does it have special meaning? Go where the prompt leads!

I always loved writing with my children at school. It was such a buzz as they put their stories and ideas on paper. They loved making books of their stories and reading them to their classmates and other classes. In fact, to anyone who would listen. I always provided them with as many audiences as I could as, isn’t that the purpose of writing — to be read? They would take their books home to read to their family and pets. Sometimes I would type up their stories and compile them into an anthology for them to take home and share.

In my class, we were all writers, all authors. Sometimes, older siblings felt they had to share their ‘superior’ worldly knowledge and burst their happy balloons. My story is about that and about the fact that sometimes a belief in oneself is more important than what anyone else thinks. I hope you like it.

Imposter Syndrome

When Dave revisited his junior school, he smiled to see the chair in its usual spot.

“Get down,” his big sister had said. “You’re not allowed on there. It’s only for authors.”

“I am an author,” Dave said, holding up the book he’d made in class.

“Not a real author. Real authors have real books published by real publishers, and their feet touch the floor. Anyway, it’s time to go.”

This time, when Dave sat in the chair, his feet touched the floor. The audience hushed as he opened his real book and began to read. Imposter no more.

Thank you blog post

Thank you for reading. I appreciate your comments. Please share your thoughts.

63 thoughts on “Imposter Syndrome #flashfiction

  1. Mabel Kwong

    Beautifully and thoughtfully written, Norah. I like how your story transitioned to the future so seamlessly – your dreams can materialise over time if you believe in yourself, and such an inspiring message for all of us. Very lovely of you to compile your students’ work into anthologies. Words and writing are always meant to be read and shared. Anyone can be a writer if they start writing. I am currently writing my first book and making quite a bit of progress, so your message was timely. Hope you are well, Norah.


    1. Norah Post author

      Thank you for your lovely, in-depth comment, Mabel. I appreciate your thoughfulness. I’m pleased to hear you are making good progress on your book. I look forward to reading it.


  2. Hugh W. Roberts

    Lovely! I love how his feet never touched the floor, but years later, they did after he’d fulfilled his dream of being a published author.

    And I love that you used to type up your pupils’ stories and compile them into an anthology for them to take home and share, Norah. What a wonderful thing to do.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. roughwighting

    This gave me the joy tingles. Yay, Dave. I think I may give this prompt to my (adult) creative writing students. Despite the fact that they write some amazing, beautiful, inspired stories in my class, they all are horrified at the thought of calling themselves “authors.” Wish they’d had a teacher like you in their early years, Norah!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Draft Collection « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

  5. Charli Mills

    What opportunities and confidence you developed in your young authors, Norah. I recall the books my children wrote in school. They were gifts. I’m glad this character didn’t let his older sibling keep him down.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Norah Post author

      Those books the children make are priceless. I really treasure them. I had a pupil from the 80s contact me on Fb a while ago, telling me that she still had the books she made when she was in my class, even a ‘time capsule’ we made when Halley’s Comet passed over. It’s nice to know the families treasure them too.


  6. petespringerauthor

    I’m so on board about writing with kids, Norah. How can they not see it as essential if their teacher takes the time to write with them?

    I liked your take on the prompt as well.

    Liked by 1 person


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