Archive for December, 2013

Burning woman

Posted: December 7, 2013 in Short stories
Tags: ,

Afrikaburn, or Burning Man as it’s known in the US, must rate as one of the most amazing experiences ever. I have attended four times and it has never ceased to astound and inspire me. It is truly an ‘Alice down the rabbit-hole’ experience and I cannot imagine what it must be like to find oneself there inadvertently. In fact, we met a few people who did just that during our last trip.

So, when the Short Story Day Africa 2013 competition theme was announced as the fairly bizarre, Feast, Famine and Potluck, what better setting for a story than Afrikaburn. My story, Burning Woman, was shortlisted as one of the top 6 entries and appears in the SSDA 2013 anthology, described as a dazzling collection from across the African continent and diaspora.

Food is at the centre of stories from authors emerging and established, blending the secular, the supernatural, the old and the new in a spectacular celebration of short fiction. Civil wars, evictions, vacations, feasts and romances – the stories we bring to our tables that bring us together and tear us apart.

You can buy a hard copy or an e-book. All of the info can be found here.

A reviewer on wrote:

“Stand out stories for me included Chicken by Efemia Chela, On Time by Achiro Patricia Olwoch, 44 Boston Heights by Catherine Jarvis and Burning Woman by Michelle Preen.”

And the anthology was listed as one of Unsung Stories’ best books of 2015.


Whispers from the wild

Posted: December 3, 2013 in Short stories
Tags: ,

One of my passions is visiting game reserves. Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to spend about 12 days camping in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, a massive park straddling South Africa and Botswana.

My story, Whispers from the Wild, was inspired by, amongst other memories, another such trip – this time to Addo Elephant Park a few years back.

Here is a short excerpt from my story:

How I had hoped and prayed that the stimulation of this new environment and the sight of these strange creatures would trigger a vocal response from Katy. But so far, it was not the case. She was clearly excited and amazed by the experience, but not enough to actually say anything. Katy had not spoken since the incident. And maybe she never would again.

It’s published in an anthology called The Short Story is Dead, Long Live the Short Story!, a collection of short stories and poems celebrating Short Story Day Africa 2012. This collection, published by Black Letter Media, features voices from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Nigeria.