Our story of the week is a coming-of-age story from the writer Mike Fox.
Mike has co-authored a book and published many articles and stories. In 2014 and 2016 he was awarded second prize in the Bedford International Short Story Competition. His story The Homing Instinct, first published in Confingo, has been selected to appear in the Best British Short Stories 2018. Another story, The Violet Eye, will shortly be published by Nightjar Publications as a limited-edition chapbook.
Mike’s writing has also appeared in, or been accepted for publication by, The London Journal of Fiction, Popshot, Into the Void, Fictive Dream, The Nottingham Review, Structo, Prole and Footnote.
In When You Became Me, Mike explores the complexity of self-love and growing up.
‘I’ve avoided this for a long time because, let’s be honest, I’ve done you no favours. I am not what you intended, you dreamed of something different. Perhaps that’s why I struggle to remember you completely: we could be expected to be like one another, but we are not. For years you sang to the night sky, sure that it would hear you. At some point you, or I, decided that was pointless.
You were so malleable. You looked to others for what you might become, for what could be made of you. It can take time to look inside, though if we wait too long what we might have seen may no longer be there. Now, I think, we both know that.
You tried lots of things: sometimes what we try leads us to who we are, although it can confuse other people. And you realised quite early that sometimes trying things out needs nothing more than an exercise of imagination to tell you if it will work. Once you understood that, it saved you from several false starts, and me from the consequences.‘ Read more…