The year 2020 has been a tumultuous year for all of us. What a time to launch our new online club! Our first writing contest last May coincided with the first months of the Covid pandemic which reshaped our world. We would love to hear your thoughts about how our club, our community, and our first Amazon Kindle Book have impacted your life during such a historic time.

Your Voice matters!  Please share your thoughts below.

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Culture Dragon
Culture Dragon (@culture-dragon)
9 months ago

According to the Chinese zodiac calendar, 2020 is the year of the “Rat” who typically represents new beginnings. They are powerful symbols of fertility, wealth and plenty, so people born in the year of the Rat are considered to be optimistic, easy-going and kind. Those born in the Year of the Rat tend to live a stable life and have the ability to turn unlucky events into fortune.

During this past year of Covid pandemic tragedy, I recall a wonderful Voice.club short story from member Katy Bizi, “Endure and Sing”, which offered a tale of hope. In Katy’s story, the little rat endures suffering, humiliation, and isolation, but never quits, and never gives up. In the end, this little guy is hailed as a great hero, so maybe her story can offer inspiration as we bring this difficult 2020 year of the Rat to a final close.
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Katy Bizi
Katy Bizi (@katy-bizi)
8 months ago
Reply to  Culture Dragon

I had no idea that the year 2020 was the year of the “Rat”! Thanks to your comment, I’m going to be doing a little research later to find out more about the Chinese zodiac calendar and the meaning behind each animal representation. Maybe, we can all learn something from the parallelism between the strong animal instincts, and traits, and the years that bring forward new challenges.

Katy Bizi
Katy Bizi (@katy-bizi)
8 months ago
Reply to  Culture Dragon

And it’s an honor to have my story recalled during these tough times of the pandemic. Truth to be told, after reading your comment, I gained new respect for the rats. An animal whose year represents optimism and hope. Can another animal represent the challenging year of 2020? I do not believe so.

Culture Dragon
Culture Dragon (@culture-dragon)
7 months ago
Reply to  Katy Bizi

Dear Katy – All our members greatly appreciate your kind and insightful words and stories. I read below, one of our star members Avatar Eric Radcliffe reminds us to take the time and support each other with uplifting comments. This is good advice, since I always learn a lot from our club writings and discourse. Yes, you are correct when you say 2020 was represented by “An animal whose year represents optimism and hope”. So we must remember, sometimes it takes going deep into darkness, in order that we may become aware, and fully see the light.
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Eric Radcliffe
Eric Radcliffe (@eric-radcliffe)
9 months ago

The New Year has always been a time for reflection, and to focus on what changes we may need to make our lives more meaningful for ourselves and others. For myself I believe in keeping an ”Open Heart”. 

Expression is such an amazing thing, and the Voice.Club allows us to do just that as a family in our writings, and poetry. But it’s also about taking the time for each other – I have made so many new friends through their stories, poems and comments, so I would like to thank the Voice.Club Team for their hard work in making this possible.To Each and Every Member – Wishing You All …… ”A Very Happy and Healthy New Year”. Eric X.

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Culture Dragon
Culture Dragon (@culture-dragon)
9 months ago
Reply to  Eric Radcliffe

Dear Eric – Your goal for the new year of “Keeping an Open Heart” is very admirable and I hope to follow your lead. I also agree with you that “Expression is such an amazing thing, and the Voice.Club allows us to do just that as a family in our writings, and poetry”. This year I hope to write more, and scribe more handwritten Haiku, and also stay more connected with nature. Here in our club, we can share the new journey of hope 2021 has to offer – Happy New Year!
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Eric Radcliffe
Eric Radcliffe (@eric-radcliffe)
9 months ago
Reply to  Culture Dragon

Thank You ”Culture Dragon” for sharing your thoughts. Yes the power of the words we write in our poetry and stories connect us all in so many different ways. And yes I am really looking forward to this New Year with the Voice.Club, and I wonder what surprises lay in store for everyone? ”A Happy Journey to All!!!”

Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary (@carrie-oleary)
8 months ago

Having had to retire early from work fourteen years ago, I don’t really leave home much unless my husband is off work and we can get away on a day trip. So I am very used to isolation, which has never really bothered me. In fact, with my husband being on furlough for the best part of eleven months now, I’ve been feeling more crowded than isolated like most other people, especially as he’s had to shield, so we’ve both been confined together in a small space the entire time. What’s happening outside feels very unreal, the worst thing is not being able to see my parents, my daughter and my grandsons. As I said to my Mum though, if this had happened thirty years ago, when I didn’t even have a house phone, the isolation from family would have been so much worse. I think I have spent the last year trying to escape into other worlds, whether creating my own, reading, writing, watching movies or binge-watching TV series and playing immersive games on the PS4. Living vicariously through all of those wonderful characters has been such a wonderful journey! Discovering this site has been a great confidence builder.… Read more »

Last edited 8 months ago by Carrie OLeary
Fuji
Fuji (@fuji)
8 months ago
Reply to  Carrie OLeary

Carrie, I can totally relate to everything you just said. I’m used to isolation, but not to shared isolation! I’m an introvert so I enjoy time alone – from your stories I think you might be similar. Like you, I love nature. Unlike you, I don’t live near an ocean or beach, but I do have a lovely garden.

The other worlds you mentioned have been vital to my emotional survival this past year. I especially like creating worlds through my own writing and through reading other great stories here. You said it so well – this extended family is important to all of us. And you yourself are a vital part of it. I have thoroughly enjoyed every one of your stories and look forward to many more. ?

Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary (@carrie-oleary)
8 months ago
Reply to  Fuji

I wish that we did live near the beach. We have at least a two hour drive to get there, and with the tier system and lockdown, we haven’t been able to go since September. We live just half a mile from Sherwood Forest, which was the inspiration for the Forest Magic short story I just released on Kindle and KU. Unfortunately, it is really muddy at this time of the year when we’ve had so much rain, so that’s been out of bounds too, especially as the dog hates baths! Muddy puddles and it’s ‘woo hoo, this is fun’, clean bath water and it’s more like ‘help, mum’s trying to drown me’. I wrote a poem about that, not so long ago, called ‘Luna’s Lament’. It’s funny, the things that inspire us. So yes, creating worlds to escape into, and imagining being able to go to Tesco in a ballgown with my daughter, you’ve all met Emily on here too, are things that keep us going every day. Hope everyone is having a good one ?

Last edited 8 months ago by Carrie OLeary

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Pragya Rathore
Pragya Rathore (@pragya-rathore)
8 months ago

I think that 2020 has been a stressful and heartbreaking year for many of us, but at the same time, it has made us happy about the small things in life. Voice.club has helped many people in this, by encouraging writers to express their hopes and fears freely, and by helping budding authors with genuine critique. Although I’m a month late, happy new year anyway  ? 

Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary (@carrie-oleary)
8 months ago
Reply to  Pragya Rathore

Happy New Year to you too. It’s the Chinese one in a few days, so we could say your wish is an early one ?. I think we all learn from critiquing stories too. When you recognise errors in other people’s work, it helps recognise them in your own. I advance read and amateur edit for several authors, which is awesome; not only do I get free books with wonderful worlds to dive into, but it is a learning experience too. Even well established authors make mistakes!

Katy Bizi
Katy Bizi (@katy-bizi)
8 months ago

A lot of people are underlining all the terrible things that happened during this past year but I, for once, would like to talk about the wonderful treasures that we have gained. We learned to value the good parts of life and we gained a new appreciation for the everyday activities, such as simply going out for a walk. We figured out how to utilize modern technology to its fullest and how to work from home (in my country that was an out-of-this-world thought but we adjusted). We spent time with our dear family and ourselves by confronting our fears and weaknesses now that we had plenty of time to do so. We traveled through books and movies and lived a thousands lives from our living room. We taught ourselves to cope with whatever came our way and to look for the positive side of life. We talked non-stop with our friends through phone calls and video chats. We grew up, both mentally and physically. Sure, we lost a lot of things. We lost moments of precious life and we lost loved ones. But if we keep rotting away in the pessimistic parts, then we will lose all that I… Read more »

Linda Rock
Linda Rock (@linda-rock)
8 months ago

I write this with a strong feeling of hope. I am booked in for my first Covid jab tomorrow. There were so many highs and lows in 2020. The worst of which was Covid cutting me off from friends and family. I so miss my daughters, a daily phone call is no compensation at all. And a dear friend and ex neighbour reluctantly gave up her independence at 95 years old and entered a care home. It breaks my heart that I can’t visit her.

But with the lows there come the highs and learning of Voice-club was very much one of those. Thank you Carrie for the heads up. I love being part of this warm and friendly community and reading all the amazing stories on here. I was so humbled to be a finalist in the ‘Scary’ competition and it has given me such confidence in my writing.

I wish Voice-club and all my fellow writers every success in 2021. And look forward to a year of awe inspiring stories that lift and take me to another place.

Margarida Brei
Margarida Brei (@margarida-brei)
7 months ago

2020 was certainly an unforgettable year! It was one of upheaval and fear. Fear of the pandemic, loss of jobs and income. There was a lot of uncertainty too. For me 2020 brought me my husband back. He was living alone in England and feeling totally isolated because of severe lock down laws. It was this isolation and loneliness that bought him tearing back to me. Now we are together and happy in our Ruby year. Having more time on my hands, I turned to writing. Now I have been published in Horror Tree and look forward to being the Feature Poet in Scifaikuest. So although 2020 meant many losses, it also gave us many opportunities.

Thank you Voice Club for presenting writing challenges.

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Most Voted Comments

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8

Bait

It takes a real talent to tell a story in so few words. What was…


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6

Endure and Sing

Inspirational piece. Am glad you picked the rat to be the protagonist in your story,…


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6

Endure and Sing

Such a sweet tale - and with a good moral to the story. I thought…


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5

Endure and Sing

Wow! This is a good story! Really good to read to little kids, the moral…


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4

Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, it really does add an extra dimension to hear your story read aloud…


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4

Endure and Sing

In my neighboring country Denmark, we have the classical storyteller Hans-Christian Andersen. Your sweet story…


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4

Endure and Sing

A really nice one with a wonderful story line. I can see why this was…


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4

Endure and Sing

A beautiful story! I was reminded of seeing Paul Potts and Susan Boyle on Britain's…


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4

Endure and Sing

Your story inspired me to keep going no matter how discouraging it gets. At times…


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4

Endure and Sing

Thank you so much for the feedback! I pray that the young readers will be…


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4

Endure and Sing

Thank you for taking the time to comment and convey your thoughts on the story.…


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4

Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, don't we all feel like the rat in your story at times! We…


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4

Vows

I must admit it was the picture of the church, with its grave yard, under…


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3

In Memoriam

It's terrible to lose someone you love and accept that he is not a part…


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3

The Problem with Women

I think Carrie has said it all. We rest our collective case.  ? 


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3

The Fisherman and the Sea

A good story with a strong message. The time has come that we should do…


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3

The Fisherman and the Sea

It is giving me great joy to read such beautiful comments from you.Thank you for…


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3

Voice.club 2020 Year In Review – OPEN

The New Year has always been a time for reflection, and to focus on what…


Mary Kot
3

Endure and Sing

I wish all of us were more like this little mouse! His confidence and courage…


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3

Endure and Sing

I'm really glad to hear that! Leena Auckel did an amazing job and I'm so…


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