The night we got Anna Fundered

October 9, 2021 at 11:22 am | Posted in Short Story | Leave a comment
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

It’s decades ago.

My windcheater says The University of Melbourne.

But I’m not so sure.

My creative writing thesis is mired in direlogue:

‘How do I fuckn know what shelias bloody think?!’

Tutorial night.

My turn to bring the cheese.

I spend up in Carlton, hoping to dazzle with my themes.

I should’ve gone for wine.

The room is nice.

Marion May calms hackles with elan.

Students accrete.

One has taken a plastic figurine to various nightclubs.


Another is doing a fading empire thing with a young boy.

Boring, and a bit off.

I’m still smacking away at 13 dystopian chapters.

So vexed, I hand out copies of my most cursed tract.

We go through.

Some ideas. Few solutions. More work.

After 2 more desultory outings, it’s Anna’s turn.

I don’t know Anna.

Marion May says her draft’s going so well, there’s already publisher interest.

Eyebrows climb over the platter.

In the spirit of socialism I’m yet to find on campus, I resolve to help Anna however I can.

She starts to read.

A girl is on a train to East Berlin. With a crippling hangover from her farewell bash …

The room stills.

Anna narrates to a group transfixed.

With jealous admiration, I wait for the bit she’s having trouble with. Any bit.

How I wish my best shit were half as good as her bad!

She reads without pride.

Apparently tired after a day’s work.

At the end, our awed silence repels 2 cheese knives.

Until I blurt, ‘Well, that obviously needs a complete rewrite. How can we help?’

The group titters. Tears of envy plinking our drinks.

The tutorial ends.

Anna flies to unknowable heights.

When Stasiland comes out, I grab a copy.

It’s all there.


Twenty years later, I’m still working my manuscript.

But once upon a time,

I shared a space with greatness.

Leave a Comment »

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at
Entries and comments feeds.

%d bloggers like this: