By the fact that I write, I am a writer, but I'll admit that my dreams of being a known and celebrated member of the literati got a bit out of hand two years ago, when I decided to submit to the CBC Literary Awards. I picked a short story from my little writing club of two members, polished it until I thought it couldn't shine any more brightly, and sent it and a $20 submission fee to the competition. Then I waited for four long months, hoping and dreaming that my story would at least make the short list, if not first place.
Of course, it made neither, and when I went to read the winning stories, I quickly realized why. The fact is that I'm not cut out for literary awards because I don't make enough use of all those wonderful, poetic and literary devices like allusion and alliteration, metaphor, oxymoron and simile. I'm a plain Jane story teller, simply because I'm a plain Jane kind of person (though I do love it when I find well-used literary devices in other peoples' writing). I've tried writing like a prize-winning poet/writer, and it feels too phony, somehow. I could blame it on the fact that I come from a long line of practical people, but as I'm proud of all those people and their practicality, that would be wrong, too.
So I write as I write, and I'll never be published in a CBC/Canada Writes competition because I don't fit their mold. If I did fit their mold, I think the people most important to me would object, saying, "Stop being so hoity-toity!" So, sorry, Canada Writes, but I'm not writing for you again.
In case you're curious about my submission to the contest, here it is. A simple story, told by a story teller who happens to write.