The Lost Treasure

cover to issue 1 The Unexplained

I wrote this piece for a competition, the prompt word was Unexplained.

The Lost Treasure

After months of not being able to write a thing the floodgates suddenly opened. Words poured out, my fingers almost bled from typing sitting in front of the screen, for hours, possibly days, on end. A Rumplestiltskin author, spinning language into story gold. My novel, The Treasue of Vandalay, would soon be complete, its plot twisting around Earth-shattering events and emotional scenes of stunning originality; my main character, the infinitely likeable and resourceful Troy Manuka, practically wrote himself, simply breezing across the page – there wasn’t a book out there like it. I have a printed copy here… at least, I did have. Searching through my stacks of papers I found only red-letter bills and scraps with illegible, hand-written scrawl. The computer couldn’t print another manuscript because the file wouldn’t open. Corrupted. I had made copies, hadn’t I? The stupid memory stick sat unused in its packet. My will to live drained away until… salvation appeared, framed enigmatically by the window: Troy Manuka.

‘Having trouble?’

‘I’ve mislaid my story, your story: no hard copy, no files, no back-ups. It’s all gone.’

Troy considered the problem. ‘Don’t worry. When writing, stuff like this happens all the time because…’ and he vanished.


I think the nightmare scenario of losing work somewhere in the digital ether has happened to us all. I reckon it’s not really lost, it’s merely being read and appreciated in a different dimension.


2 thoughts on “The Lost Treasure

    • Thank you, Helen. After such a loss there then follows a frantic rewrite, blocking out all external stimuli just to get down any fragments of the story you can remember. I’ve often found the rewrites to read better because you only recall the real bones of the piece, written with huge energy! Perhaps sometimes it is best to discard troublesome pieces and start from scratch.

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