The challenge was to depict a Sore Loser in under 300 words using a story format
 
Our judge was the Indian writer Kavery Nambisan whose book ‘The Story That Must Not be Told‘ was short-listed for the Man-Asian Literary Prize. In her comments on the winning entries she said, “I must say you’ve given them a challenge! Not easy…They seem to have understood the word constraints that you must have set, and the theme. Each of them shows promise, in different ways… In stories as short as these, every word must be made to count. It’s a good exercise.”
 
Now let our readers enjoy the first of what we hope will be a regular feature from the Creative Writers’ Circle.
The WINNER is Simi Kamboj
RUNNERS UP are Rebecca Young and Noor Nass

A Sore Loser

Simi Kamboj

Word Count: 200

“I want to die.”

“Hmm, what?” I adjusted the television volume. Manchester United was playing Real Madrid in the Champions League final and I had settled in for the evening.

“I said I want to die,” she repeated, louder this time.

“Why?”

“Because I’m a failure. I’m worth nothing.”

“What happened?”

“I went for the audition”

“And”?

“They chose some Nina. The producers thought she had ‘charisma’.”

“Maybe she did,” I nodded absently.

“You really think so? I think the audition was a farce!”

“Look,  there’ll be other opportunities.”

“That’s it. Maybe she told the producers she’d do anything for the part, and batted those fake eyelashes at them. Charisma, my foot!”

“Listen, you’re talented. You’re taking music lessons. Something will work out.”

“I think I’ve had enough. I want to take a break from everything”.

“Alright, but can we discuss this after the game?”

“Just as I thought. If I walked off the terrace this instant, nobody would notice. When you finish with your game, you can go looking for the charismatic Nina.”

At this point, Wayne Rooney headed the ball into the net. By the time I could tear my eyes away from the television, she was gone.

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RUNNER UP

Family Game Night

by Rebecca Young

BWC “Sore Looser” Contest Entry

Word Count: 297

Family Game Night

“Then I’ll trade this wheat for bricks and then build another road and a settlement,” Bill narrated as he changed his cards for two blue pieces, which he then placed on triumphantly on the board. “That’s nine points.”

“So you are winning,” grumbled Heather, 12, who didn’t especially care for her uncle Bill. Emily didn’t blame her daughter. Bill had been whining the whole game that he had the worst spots on the board, the dice never favored him or they ganged up on him. She didn’t see how. Bill’s mousy wife Karen hardly dared make a play and their daughter, Molly, 10, seemed equally cowed.

It was funny, how playing brought up childhood memories of other games- invariably won by Bill. She looked at her hand. But maybe not today.

She cast the die, rolling a six. “That gives me another point,” Emily said, revealing her hand “and I have three points here, so makes ten. I win!”

Bill looked at the cards in her hand disbelievingly. Then his lips pressed into a hard thin line. “You always were a little cheat.”

Astonished, she laughed, stopping short as she looked at Bill’s cold expression. “C’mon Billy- it’s just a game,” said Emily.

Bill shoved his chair back from the table, scattering pieces on the board. Emily saw Molly flinch. “Time to go,” he said, storming towards the door.

Disbelieving, Emily looked at Karen, who wouldn’t meet her eyes. Karen got up and warily made her way over to Bill.

Another childhood flashback- of Bill’s grimace as he gave Emily an Indian burn that left bruises. Afterwards, he was more careful not to leave a mark. And she was careful to avoid him.

What did I just do? she thought, as she watched Molly scuttle after them.

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RUNNER UP

SORE LOSER

By Noor Nass

Word count: 260

Her name was Sama, she was eighteen years of age. Life seemed good in her parent’s eyes, a popular reputation, a highly achieved GPA from a well-established high school in the country, and a very loved character among her peers. The new car gift from her Grandfather just made it seem very liberating; and a scholarship from Yale University made her dream even better. Until came across her path an opportunity of a proposal by a close relative of hers, she couldn’t let that slip away too.

For a marriage from a member within her own family would not come that easy and who knows when she would fall in love again, if not now!

But life seemed a bit unfair when she came back from her summer holidays in Paris, after her engagement from Zatter. For her life came to an end for her studies in Yale University. For she soon discovered that a child was on his way to this beautiful life that she called the Sand Island “Bahrain”.

As a young bride she began to feel betrayed by life itself, away from her peers, away from her daily outing with friends and limited intake of food due to the babies effect on her body, not to mention consent of a husband’s approval every time she wanted to do something. She began to feel like a loser. Sama began to whine and whine and whine! In 5 years she managed to lose everything that everybody considered to be a success and her whining came to an end ..

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