Having writing assignments at school to some most probably seemed a chore, for me it always excited me. I embraced the challenge and looked forward to letting my creative mind escape onto paper.

Now generally the writing tasks were to create a short story in around 500 words, the groans rippled around the classroom, but not for me. 500 words, hmmm, well I would see where my brain took me.

In honesty, I rarely submitted any creative writing in parameters given. Once the thread of an idea popped into my head, the scribbling commenced and not only that, I often created my own images, you know, in the day when pen or pencil were a “thing” lol.

As it happened, and I shall never forget his name, Mr Allen, the Head of English for the school, was also our subject teacher. At somewhere between 13 years and 14 years, a writing task had been set, with the usual short story guidelines.

These were always fiction based but with little else to prompt pupils in the creativity other to “let yourself go free”.

Once again I got about my task with great enthusiasm and the scribbling and the drawing just flooded in and spread itself over many many pages of an exercise book. I never concerned myself with word counts as I knew I would always exceed the baseline.

Well the day came to submit the assignment and we all queued dropping off our written work for Mr Allen to review. Mostly people seemed to be handing over a sheet or two…until it got to me.

I placed the exercise book on the pile of other submissions and we all filed out as the school bell had rung for the end of day.

The following morning we had a couple of lessons, probably maths and French, not things I had much of an aptitude for, and then it was English…I kind of felt a little concerned about the quality of my assignment so it was with mixed feelings I went to class.

Photo by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

Mr Allen had all of the sheafs of paper and my exercise book on the desk in front of him and started to call out each of us to collect them. There were around 10 or more pupils that went for their papers in front of me and all glancing at the marks they had gained.

Nervously, I responded to my name and went to collect the my assignment.

Mr Allen handed me the exercise book.

“I want to see you at the end of lesson, so stay back”, he said it with a smile which I found very confusing.

Once I opened the book to see my mark, I was even more confused, “A++”…a grade I had never seen nor heard of. That was comforting but staying back after class was usually a bad thing.

The lesson felt like the longest ever and I was not focusing fully for most of it, which, was out of character for me with my interest in the subject.

Well, the midday bell rang and off everyone went for their lunch break…it was time for me to “face the music”.

“Now, I take it you enjoyed writing this and doing the drawings?”

“Well, yes, sir…ermm am I in trouble?”

He laughed, a teacher laughing was also a novelty at our school, “Nooooo not at all, I want to give you some advice”

A positive that felt like a slap in the face when you expected something bad.

“Never, ever, stop writing. I really enjoyed what you did and it would be a waste to stop. Whatever you do in life, do NOT stop writing, please.”

True to his direction, I have never stopped writing. There have been peaks and troughs and even droughts. There have been periods of my written work being mostly technical and instructional.

I have been a Royal Air Force Police Officer, an Operations Manager of a Security Company and a Quality Control Auditor…so you can imagine the paperwork required there and that was never creative lol.

End of the day, the scribbles continue and whilst my digits still move the words will still spill out in whatever way my train of thought goes.

If you read this far I thank you for your time.

Best Regards

Dominus Owen Markham

By Caveman

Entrepreneur, Writer, Online Marketer, Web Developer, Business Coach, , Cafe Lover, Geek - Motto - Carpe Diem

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