Untitled by Fred Bekker


On Wednesday September 3, our regular Free Writers Guild student Fred Bekker was personally invited by Dave Eggers to read this piece at Carriageworks during Dave's sold-out talk for the Sydney Writers' Festival. Fred conducted himself with great aplomb, dropping in jokes and reading like a pro. Here's the story he read!  

I’m not sure when, but I began to be aware of something on my shoulder. It wasn’t the type of becoming aware where you instantly see something and recognize it, but it was the type of awareness an aging man would get over his advancing years, a slow creeping feeling that could take days or even years before you might notice something amiss.

To describe the thing on my shoulder would’ve been impossible were it not for the thing aiding me in my task. It was short, but not in the way that if it was enlargified it would have looked disproportionate, and about the size of your hand. It was a concoction of a pixie, a goblin, a dragon, and a deep-sea-water fish all mixed together to make the thing on my shoulder. My imagination.

My imagination helps me in every-day tasks, from writing a history report to drawing a picture. Now, more than anything, my imagination loves sugar. It silently pleads with me; begging day and night, making any excuse to get some of its well-sought after C12H22O11 (that’s sugar you dum dum). But to give, to give that tiny bit of sugar that my imagination craves so much, would turn that imagination into a monster, either partying all day inside my brain, giving me bad ideas and false leads, or slumbering in its brain-cave, refusing to yield a single drop of inspiration.

But I’m not the only one, no, every single person on earth has this creature, some big, some small, some almost non-existent, some good, and some evil. Each person has an imagination, and it’s our duty to nurture it, let it grow and let it make your life awesome.