On becoming third

Hello everybody,

as some of you may or may not know, this weekend (20th of September 2020) I took part in the Luxembourgish literary contest Prix Laurence aimed towards “young writers” (whatever that means). I tried something new; I wrote ‘fables’ with only one sentence, and all of them had to include a twist. Some of them were popular English idioms which I repurposed into witty (and socially critical) pieces.

I have to say my experiment succeeded; I was able to perform it pleasantly, and I got some ‘ooohhhhsss’ from the audience: a first. I then got awarded third place with said text. I am quite happy how it turned out. A lot of the other contestants had amazing texts that were up to par with mine, if not spectacularly better. There is talent in Luxembourg, and I am so pleased that I am slowly but surely creeping up from the underground and into the ears of the population. One day, maybe, I could have a name in this tiny country of mine.

That’s all.

Cheers and I love you all,

Cosimo.

On graduating

I’ve graduated. Finished my Bachelor in European Studies with a specialization in English. I never thought I would one day be in that scenario. Why? Well, I did repeat a year in primary school and two in high school. In those times I was lazy, anxious and depressed, confused most of the times. I thought school wasn’t something for me, and in a way that was true. School went to fast for me. I couldn’t catch up to other people. It was only in 12th grade that I understood what that meant: I had to take my own time, and taking my own time meant good organisation. I’ve learned that I have to start much earlier to others when it comes to studying; if a week was plenty for some, I had to have two or three weeks to fully understand the material, and even so I would get an OK grade; nothing spectacular, average. I also learned that active participation made understanding the material easy. Engagement with subjects allows profound internalization. By applying these things, I was able to eventually graduate high school.

Then came University; a new slate, a new playing field. I did something (maybe the only thing) in which I truly excelled. English was not only my favourite subject, but the one subject I actually got above average grades. So my decision was quick; English it is. And I made it. So here I am, graduated from my undegrad program. A boy that was about to become a butcher. A boy that failed three years. So, if I can make it, you can too. Most high school systems are unfair, and never allow people to strive. University though is an amazing medium to strive (obviously, if you choose to do what you truly love, if University and studying isn’t what you love, don’t do it. I firmly believe in following what ever you heart desires, unconditionally, passion always wins). It taught me how to critically think, how to read, how to analyse, and how to apply skills in a interdisciplinary approach; a leading string woven into various fabrics making one bright and colorful sweater one can wear. I taught me how to learn and also how to teach. This is where I will transition to a new news:

I got accepted into the Master program “Master en Enseignement Secondaire – Langue et Litterature Luxemburgeoise” (Master in Secondary Teaching – Luxembourgish Linguistics and Literature). Yep, I choose to become a teacher in the very system that had failed me several times. Is this an act of rebellion? Maybe. I don’t want children to go through what I went through. I want to give them chances, and be influential, and aid them to flourish. I want to be like the teacher I had in high school in my two last years (12th / 13th grade). Supportive and a guide. So yes, this might be rebellion, but maybe I just hope to better the system? I don’t know yet if I’ll be able to do this, or even how, but I feel like this is the right choice.

In addition, I choose to become a teacher in a field where I’m not so well versed as in English Studies. Again, why you might ask? Challenge. I want to show that the skills I acquired the last three years, the skills that made me improve drastically, will allow me to go through things that are unknown to me, and that with confidence. Be that as it may, I know I will struggle (as I always do), and I know it will take me more time than others, probably, and I know it will have to work hard, and I know there will be stones blocking my path, but I don’t care. I will probably overcome these things, as I always do, as I always did.

So yeah, I graduated, and will do so again.

See ya,

Cosimo.

‘Beyond the Graveyard’

So, I guess the cat is out of the bag. You can find my latest short-story ‘Beyond the Graveyard’ in the Black Fountain Press-published anthology ‘Young Voices’! This story has received ‘honorable mention’ in the same-titled contest by the Luxembourgish English-only publishing house Black Fountain Press. You can buy the anthology here:

CLICK HERE!

‘Splash’

The University of Luxembourg and the Language Center held a short-story contest for students; my short-story ‘Splash’ got second place! You can read ‘Splash’ in this booklet on page 20 (11 in the online reader):

No photo description available.


https://indd.adobe.com/view/e1adf618-a567-418a-8c1d-8d414cef748e

Thank you to Sandy and my creative writing group, The Writing Circle, for feedback on prior renditions of the story.

‘De Café um Bock’

Finally. My second published short-story ‘De Café um Bock’ is now available in the 2019 Prix Laurence anthology. If you are in Luxembourg, you can pick the book up free in various selected libraries!

hear the blue bird chirp.

I have long resisted the urge to make a Twitter.

However, considering I want to take this absolutely serious, and all the serious writers have Twitter, I thus made one too.

I’ll try to be active on it. Therefore, if you want to listen to my quick and nonsensical ramble about stuff and things and thought related to writing, university, nerdom, and so on and so forth; follow me!

https://twitter.com/cosimo_suglia

on writing a novel. personal struggle.

I am writing on a novel right now.

-no, not an anthology,-no, not on a collection,-no, not on anything else; a novel. That mammoth of a genre; that defining piece of any authors journey; the holy grail, Prometheus’ fire, that one cheeseburger at 3 AM after a night of Jägerbombs and gin-tonics and bitter-golden ale. You know what I mean; the climax of the journey and the return to normalcy.

The problem is, I am still on the journey. I am waiting for that one magic entity that needs my help, and unlike most heroes, I am immediately ready to fulfill that destiny. I’m Bilbo sitting in front of the coal fire waiting patiently for Gandalf and telling him yes without any hesitation. (Would’ve been a complete different story huh?)

Okay, I know I sound dramatic. The motivation is there, don’t worry about that, and don’t worry about ideas either; those a rather plenty; thick and juicy peaches ready to be harvested. But I’m so intimidated about the form. So far, all I’ve been writing are short-stories and flash fiction and the occasional poetry. But novels? How are other writers so excellent at talking naturally about anything. I say things quick and short in the most gorgeous prose my limited vocabulary can amalgamate. But novels are a complete different beast. A humbling experience truly. My challenge and my temptations, but I cannot wait to fall into the abyss of personal struggle and die a terrible authorial death, being reborn as a novelist. And, maybe, that novel will be published; and maybe it wont, for these are the unforeseen circumstances of my atonement.

Until then, I guess, I’ll keep on writing and writing and writing…short-stories mostly, of course, but I’ll keep chipping away at the marble-like blank page with black bursts of sentences and words; carvings of delusional ideas; art of mine.

Cosimo D. Suglia.