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Chris Alleyne, Short Story Semi-Finalist, LISP 2nd Quarter 2020

- Can you please tell us about your daily life?

I live in Barbados and, I guess that I’ve been writing since school days, but never too seriously.  It was my ex-wife that got me thinking about the idea.  My first story was called ‘The Cat’.  I submitted it to an online mag called Black Petals and, within half-hour I had an acceptance email.  Of course no money, but that was no problem for me.  I was just blown away that someone was interested in my work.  That would have been mid-January this year.  

- When did you start writing? How often do you write? 

I write often, but often random, nonsense verse which provides laughs for people. 

- How does it feel to have your work recognised?

Having my work recognized is very encouraging.  Unfortunately, living in a location with a non-tradeable currency (the Barbados dollar) is a real roadblock to actually earning anything from it.

- What's the best thing and the hardest thing about writing a Short Story? 

When it comes to writing, I find that my best stories write themselves with little input from me. Unfortunately, they don’t come along often enough, and forcing never seems to help.

-  How did you come up with the idea for your LISP selected story? Is there a story behind your story? And, how long have you been working on it?

My story here was one that woke me up one night around 1 AM, and by 3.30, it was done, apart from a little touch-up editing.  I do suffer from cramps, and I have a healthy respect for bears, but I have no idea what put them together in my head. 

- Can you please give us a few tips about writing a 1500-word short story?

This is the first time that I have ever entered a writing competition, so I haven’t yet formed an opinion.  This is the only sub 1500-word piece that I’ve ever written.  I find it very difficult to hold the word-count down.

-Lastly, do you recommend the writers to give it a go on short story and LISP?

I would definitely advise anyone to submit entries; it’s not very expensive and it feels good of you get any kind of recognition.  I will definitely be back – assuming I can stick to less than 1,500 words.



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