Writespiration : The Non-Binary Prom

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I’m taking part in Sacha Black’s Writespiration writing prompt. https://sachablack.co.uk/2016/07/27/writespiration-93-underwater-ballroom/

Here’s what Sacha asked us to do this week:

Your challenge this week is to set a piece of flash fiction under water. Write a story in less than 200 words. Paste in the comments or use a pingback and submit before 7th August.

I couldn’t wait to write this, the prompt was just so perfect. I love the idea of setting the flash under water… What could I do with this? I decided to play with the prompt  a bit placing the main character’s emotion under water rather than actually setting the flash fiction under water.

I won’t say anymore about this until the end of the flash other than to say this is not a subject that I’ve ever written about on my blog before. Or even thought that about much until recently….

So I am a bit nervous sharing this piece of flash:

The Non-Binary Prom

I’m underwater, or I might as well be. The sun’s shining but I can’t feel it on my back. All I can hear is everyone whispering, a waterfall of gushing laughter presses against me.  Ed swims through and signs my tee-shirt. Nobody else comes near. I have my back to him but it doesn’t stop me from imagining his face creasing into a confident surfer I know who I am smile. He scribbles something, and his mates laugh. I tear my tee-shirt off, exposing my ripped body, and tiny almost bikini top. He’s written girl and then crossed it out and written boy with this ugly question mark.

‘What you wearing to prom, Les?’ he asks. He’s laughing, because he knows that I can’t make up my mind whether to wear a suit and tie, or a fucking dress.

Non-binary. That’s me. I’m not on the prissy Prom committee but if I was I’d plan an underwater ball with us all swimming, skinny dipping, no clothes, no fancy ball gowns, nowhere to write mean things. Just floating, tattooed skin, splashing I’m human. That’s who we really are. What’s inside counts but Ed can’t see that.  He’s drowning in binary.

© Marjorie Mallon 2016 – aka, Kyrosmagica. All Rights Reserved.

 

The idea for The Non-Binary Prom piece of flash came from several recent events.

Firstly, my daughter’s T-shirt signing, (last day at secondary school,) and the big event of the year – her prom. She absolutely loved dressing up, wearing the fancy dress, high heels, getting her make up done….. and it was lovely. But …. a person who identifies as non-binary would have a different experience. (Any non-binary people reading this do comment below.. I would be interested in hearing your opinion on events such as Prom.)

Also,  we’ve been talking about gender issues at home – a friend of my eldest daughter is non-binary. I have to say when my daughter first told me about her friend I found this really hard to comprehend. How can someone not identify as either male or a female? OK, I can see why someone might think of themselves as male but be in a female body and vice versa, but non-binary is much more fluid and its very fluidity makes it much more difficult to understand. So that gave me the idea to link it with being underwater pushing against a tide of same aged pupils who are secure in their birth gender and don’t understand you.

Then, quite by chance I came across a Vegan blog entitled Cooking on A Boot Strap – Self Love Stew written by Mx. Jack Monroe who is non-binary. As an aside the Self Love Stew recipe looked delicious, so I decided to check out Jack’s blog some more. Curious, (writers always are!) I read through Jack’s account.. I Have Something To Tell You

Jack’s account is so well written that I began to understand a little more about what it means to be non-binary. I’ve always considered myself to be a very open minded caring sort of person so that got me thinking… and that got me attempting to write from the point of view of a non-binary individual for the above piece of flash. Not sure I did it justice… Let me know what you think.

Hope my piece of flash got you thinking too… Are you, or do you know someone who is non-binary?

Do comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts on gender issues.

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My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

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About Marje @ Kyrosmagica

Hi. Welcome to my blog, Kyrosmagica. A blog about magic, books, writing, laughter, and much more! I'm a debut writer in the process of finishing my first YA fantasy novel, set in Cambridge. I write book reviews on Net Galley and Goodreads. I have a penchant for travel and have relatives in far flung places, Australia, Malaysia, and Singapore, (my birthplace.) I grew up in in Bonnie Scotland, in Edinburgh, and now live in Cambridge. I love sunny, hot places, particularly Rome, Venice, Portugal, Barcelona, and I forgot to mention the sun drenched beaches of the Caribbean, how could I? I am lucky to have been blessed with two lovely daughters and a husband who I fondly refer to in this blog as my black sheep. Family joke! With my passion for travel, culture, beautiful beaches, good food, books, theatre, writing, and humour, I hope to keep you entertained. I'm loving every minute of this creative journey, please join me.
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34 Responses to Writespiration : The Non-Binary Prom

  1. Wow, Marje. This is such a powerful piece of writing. Just goes to show how powerful words can be regardless of how many of them there are. I’ve never read anything quite like it. You should certainly use this in anything you send to agents, publishers, etc.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Al Lane says:

    Really powerful piece, Marje. Handles the subject with sensitivity and compassion x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Helen Jones says:

    This is so great, Marjorie – a really cool take on the prompt 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. dgkaye says:

    I wanted to say what a powerful piece of writing this is Marje, but I see it seems to be the only word that’s come to mind for many commenters here, lol. Congrats, and I agree with Hugh. Keep it in mind for a submission. ❤
    PS Thanks for telling about the cute bitmojis. I'm hooked! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  5. dgkaye says:

    Wow, I just left you a long comment and it evaporated in thin air, lol.:) I believe I said a powerful post, as seems to be the national consensus here, lol. And thanks for the Bitmoji tip, I’m having fun with it. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pingback: Five Blog Posts I Recommend You Read This Weekend – Hugh's Views & News

  7. Claudette says:

    This is an issue very close to home – and you handled it wonderfully well. Powerful is indeed the right word, and sensitive. it is a topic that can be fraught with all sorts of perceptions, but you wrote it as directly as if it came from you. The part about “I’m human. That’s who we really are.” – this is the concept that I was only talking about this week. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Judy Martin says:

    What a fantastic story and original take on the prompt 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ellen Hawley says:

    It’s a whole new world out there. As a nearly 70-year-old lesbian, I’m still struggling to get my head around it. It’s the privilege of each generation to baffle the ones that came before. May they use that privilege well.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. sepultura13 says:

    Never heard of ‘non-binary,’ nor do I know anyone who is…it seems that people want to create new terms daily, because who they are just isn’t ‘special’ enough for the Twitter-feed or Instagram pic.
    People aren’t accepting of others, solely for the colour of their skin…so this ‘non-binary’ stuff is completely off of my radar.
    Interesting post, at any rate!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Touching and thoughtful. Well done!
    JP

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Sacha Black says:

    Wow Marje, what a stunning piece of writing, I adore the ending, truly. I think you tackled this issue amazingly and with such grace. I have spent many hours thinking about this topic. I often wonder about gender and what really makes us ‘woman or man’ beautiful writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I like your Wattpad author bio! Let’s find those mermaids 😉

    Like

  14. Pingback: Writespiration #94 Condense Your Novel Into 3 Sentences | Sacha Black

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