12 août 2013

[En] Once Upon A Time...

... there was a competition run by the University of Portsmouth.

The Creative Writing in a Foreign Language (CWFL).

My Master Thesis Advisor sent me a link. I didn't check it out at first. Don't ask me why. I looked into  it only a few days later.


  1. first thought: "Neat! I've never thought of a writing competition in English!"
  2. second thought: I realized the person sending me this link was no other than my Master Thesis Advisor; then I was like "Damn, for her to send me this, she must believe in my ability to win something."
  3. a damn strong sense of pride overwhelmed me afterwards.
I'm not gonna make a repeat of my previous post. I'm just gonna give you its guideline.

November 2012, 2nd or 3rd week.
A very British English Professor of mine assigned us a creative writing exercise: compose an iambic pentameter poem.

November 2012, 25th.
The first draft of a poem. Still, it didn't feel right.
First and only trip to an English-speaking country. Just for a few hours in Canterbury (too bad I couldn't take a look inside the cathedral). Unfortunately, but hey... it's still better than none whatsoever!

Change of air.
Change of land.
Change of language.

Nothing better to cure some lack of inspiration!

I must admit, the second crossing of the Channel was kinda weird. Going back to France was like stepping into a foreign country. Weird huh ?
Nostalgia was there. The inspiration with it. The first draft of my poem turned into a ten iambic pentameter poem. 

October 2012, 1st week.
I certainly was proud of my work on this poem, but I never would have thought my very British English Professor could have been impressed to no end by it. And yet, he did! Hurrah for me!
Though, the poem still needed a few small modifications.

April 2013, 2nd.
Reception of the link.

June 2013, 6th.
Entry submission for CWFL:

I had enough. Of those, I want no more.
I'm done. No need for self-inflicted pain.
I have to shut away those treasured thoughts,
At least for now. I've got to let you go.
A lonely walk at night, it takes no more :
A scent of burning wood, of earth, of rain,
A strong and goodly mix, a soothing feeling
I revel in; a breeze in moonlight glow.
And let's pretend I'm not a sorry mess,
A soulless ghost who wanders by herself.

July 2013, 23th.
Reception of a mail with this list of winners enclosed. Winners and commendations are to be published in the University's anthology of Creative Writing in a Foreign Language, Tonguefreed.

July 2013, 25th.
Prize Award Ceremony I couldn't decently attend to, organized by the

August 2013, 1st week.
Reception at home of the prize I sadly couldn't get in person.
Ok, I'm bragging a bit, but hey... it's something big for a French poet to be recognized as an author in English too! That's a big deal!
And since I'm the only French-speaking student, French being their mother-tongue, winning something: three cheers for France!

My real name is blurred for a reason. I use it as a translator.
Here, I'm BJO, a poet who sometimes plays around with a camera.

This was the story behind this first won prize!

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