Dreamers, singers, heroes and killers, they can dazzle with their beauty or their talent or their unmitigated evil, yet inside themselves they are as frail and desperate as the rest of us. But can you see them? Can you unravel the truth? These are people you know, but not as you know them.Peel back the mask and see.
This book is dedicated to the victims of violent crime, the struggle against discrimination in all its forms and making the world a better place for our children. That is why 30% of all profits will be shared between Stop Hate UK, The North East Autism Society and Friends of the Earth.
TAKE THE BACKSTORIES CHALLENGE
Find the lost little boy in this story for your chance to win one of three signed, limited
edition review copies of the Amazon bestseller, Backstories.
The Guitar: No doubt about it, he was a bright kid, talented even. He was quick on his feet and with his mouth too, and he could smack a baseball out of the park. But he was a Jew, and he was short. I mean like really short. The kid was the size of your average third grader when he was twelve years old. When he was taking those first steps
towards manhood. When it mattered most.
And this was back in the fifties, with Sinatra top of the charts, John Wayne High and Mighty on the big screen and New York thrusting itself into the heavens, one skyscraper taller than the next. It was a one-size-fits-all sort of time, but it didn’t fit him.
If a girl laughed away down the street, he felt the heat in his cheeks. Even a simple smile was met with squinty-eyed suspicion.
He felt like the whole world was laughing at him, and there was truth enough in that.
The other kids couldn’t resist. Let loose from class they could forget about their failures and rejections, their overbearing fathers and screaming mothers, their secret fears and pigeon chests. For that hour at lunchtime they could be free of themselves, laughing fearlessly while they pushed the little guy around the yard and asked him what he
was doing out of kindergarten, or where he’d left Snow White. That was the best one. They banged away at it for months, with raucous renditions of ‘Hi-ho, hi-ho,’ booming across the yard, reprised with hums and whistles in the classroom.
HOW TO ENTER
Sign up here (https://www.simonvandervelde.com/stories/backstorieschallenge) to post your answer and get the full story for free.
The first three correct entrants out of the hat will receive a signed, original review copy of Backstories and a chocolate treat.
Entries Close 11:59pm Saturday 24th April, 2021.
Thank you, Simon Van der Velde
About the Author
Simon Van der Velde has worked variously as a barman, labourer, teacher, caterer and lawyer, as well as travelling throughout Europe and South America collecting characters and insights for his award-winning stories. Since completing a creative writing M.A. (with distinction) in 2010, Simon’s work has won and been shortlisted for numerous awards including; The Yeovil Literary Prize, (twice), The Wasafiri New Writing Prize, The Luke Bitmead Bursary, The Frome Shortstory Prize, The Harry Bowling Prize, The Henshaw Press Short Story Competition and The National Association of Writers’ Groups Open Competition – establishing him as one of the UK’s foremost short-story writers.
Simon now lives in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, with his wife, Nicola, their labradoodle, Barney and two tyrannical children.