Reading Allowed

The Astronaut

When I started sharing and publishing my writing a couple of years ago, I had never really considered people would actually be reading what I had written.

Of course, I hoped that people would read my work, and I expected at least a few people would take the time to explore my creations. What I mean by never consider others would actually be reading my work, is I never consider it being read by them in their mind or in their voice. Reading is usually a private, personal thing. I do not sit and watch my wife reading, for example, and as an adult it had been a rarity for me to hear writing read aloud. I have certainly not heard by book Free City read aloud for example. Even when I am reading things back or editing I do so in silence. And when it comes to hearing my voice played back to me in videos or even when I have used the dictaphone at work, I struggle to listen. I find my voice sounds strange and tinny, and I have to admit I expected hearing my writing read aloud to have a similar level of embarrassment.

This morning, I was given my first chance to hear a piece I had written being read by someone else, and I must say I was excited. I follow an account on Instagram called Prompted Writing Podcast. Each week they take a writing prompt and between the three presenters create a piece in a particular genre. A couple of weeks ago, they put out a writing prompt for their audience to have a bash at, and I decided to submit a short piece of flash fiction.

Turns out they liked what I had written, so much so they read it out on their podcast which was uploaded this morning. At 9am, while lying in bed and deciding whether to get up or have a few more minutes lie in, I listened to the podcast and for the first time my words being read aloud by someone else. Before I say any more, definitely go check out the podcast, it is a great series!

While my submission is only a short piece, I must admit I was thrilled to hear my words spoken aloud. As I had written the piece, I had chosen a particular pace and tone when I wrote the piece, but it was interesting to see the places someone else put emphasis and the pace with which they read the piece, subtly different to how I imagined it, but brining it to life none the less. For this to be followed up with kind comments about my writing and the humour I had tried to inject into the piece was the icing on the cake.

Sharing something you have created, no matter how brief it may be, can be a scary leap, especially for a new writer. To then have that piece admired and read aloud by someone else is certainly an exciting opportunity. Thank you to Prompted Writing Podcast for giving me this first opportunity, and make sure you check out their work at the links above!

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