Young Author Award

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12 Best Stories for First Assignment Malaysia Young Author Award 2020
(200+ words unedited stories)

Lim Jou Yee (12)
My Best Friend

I couldn’t believe what she had just said. Especially since I had always considered her my best friend.

When I first moved into this town, nobody wanted to make friends with the nerdy looking new girl. I have always pursued for knowledge my whole life, spending countless hours poring over geography books, which was my favorite subject in school.

And yet it was Kate who first came up to me, introduced herself and gave me a tour all around the school, making sure I knew where all my classes were, without seeking anything in return except for being her best friend.

It has been a month here now, and the monthly tests were coming as usual. I took the preparations for this test seriously as I wanted to make a good impression for the teachers by scoring full marks in every test.

I burned the midnight oil day and night, working my fingers to the bone, doing sheets and sheets of calculus homework when my classmates would be partying late into the night; all because of a few tests.

The big day finally came, I entered the class only to be pulled to the side by Kate. She dragged the confused me to a corner of the classroom and whispered into my ear: ‘Later during the test, I want you to pass me all the answers. Make sure all of them are correct.’

‘But…why?’

‘Because it was the only reason I befriended you: to help me ace my tests.’

Tea Chen Yu (12)
If I could step into the shoes of a storybook character for a year, who would I want to be?

There is a question that I ask myself sometimes, which is: If I could really become any storybook character for a year, who exactly would I want to be? As I have read many books before, there are innumerable selections. Percy Jackson, Will Treaty, Frank Hardy, Van Helsing and many more.
The character that I will prefer to be the most is Sherlock Holmes. He is a famous fictional detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The reason I want to be him is because Holmes is in a world where crime is always about and is full of suspense. The dangerous atmosphere makes me feel excited as I love suspense.

Besides, Sherlock Holmes has a brilliant brain that can analyze any situation given to him and produce an expert opinion out of it. His brain can store information that is useful to him without mistakes and also observe and deduce with astonishing accuracy. The analytical powers will surely help me get better results than my peers in academics.

Other than that, Sherlock Holmes is an accomplished boxer, wrestler, fencer and martial arts fighter. He constantly remains fit to be able to get out of any tough situation that he faces. So, I can prevent myself from being bullied by anyone.I also can ace the fitness test organised by my school every half a year.

With all these talents, who would not want to be him? 

Eashvar A/L Suresh Kumar (13)
If I could step into the shoes of a storybook character for a year, who would I want to be?

“Every child would wish to step into the shoes of a storybook character, who would it be, if you’re given the privilege for a year?” “I would like to step into the shoes of Ali Baba.” “Among all the storybook characters, you chose Ali Baba?” My buddies asked with a puzzle. I explained to them why I like this character. First and foremost, he is not a greedy person. Even though there were many golds and diamonds inside the cave, he took the amount that his donkey could carry back. The incident proves that he is a caring too.

Another value that attracts me to him is, his forgiving heart. Though his brother always looked down on him and his wife, he helped his brother’s family after the brother passed away. He cared and valued everyone, this can be seen through the love and care the maid has towards him and helped him from being killed by the thieves. So, it’s true, what goes around comes around.

It will not only be thrilling but adventurous too, being in Ali Baba’s shoes. I would grab this opportunity and use the fortune to help my parents, those in need and invest it. It will be an awesome experience with abundance of thrill, love, passion and wealth.  

How Yi Wen (13)
If I could step into the shoes of a storybook character for a year, who would I want to be?


If I could step into the shoes of a storybook character for a year, I would want to be Alice from the 1865 novel, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, written by Lewis Carroll.

The world of Wonderland was created by Carroll, who depicted it to be a land of literary nonsense and peculiar creatures, some of which that speak in rhymes. I feel that is what makes the story so different from other well-known fantasy series. With its unique places and habitants, Wonderland has always fascinated me in some way. As a child, I would want to somehow find myself in this beautifully different world. Being in Alice’s shoes, or just being her, would give me the opportunity to experience the tale myself.

Carroll had described all the happenings and the land itself in a way that brings the image to readers even if they could not be there when it happened. Despite this, I could not help but want to be there in the tale itself, so I could have a better sense and impression of what Wonderland truly is like.

If I were in Alice’s shoes, I would be able to do and see things that would never happen in the real world, and that is what intrigues me more about Wonderland: size-changing food and drinks, creatures who talk in foreign languages, an advice-giving caterpillar, a vanishing cat that leaves his grin behind and a queen with a signature phrase that almost everyone has heard of.

If I were to be given the chance to step into a storybook character’s shoes, I would certainly want to be Alice. 

Yumnah binti Muhammad Dudha (16) 
If I could step into the shoes of a storybook character for a year, who would I want to be?


If given the opportunity to step into the shoes of a storybook character, there would be no choice more appealing to me than Max Demian, an immensely prominent character in the book ‘Demian’ by Hermann Hesse.

Demian embodies a puzzling figure, an eccentric thinker, and a powerful intellectual capable of shattering intricate perspectives with his words. He is a leader who leads by example, conducting himself uniquely and impressively. Confident in his ability to see both sides of every spectrum, he often plays the devil’s advocate, rattling every ground he walks upon and sparking those around him into a journey of self-discovery. Crucially, he inculcates in others courage and curiosity in their quest for truth. He personifies Jungian archetypes, revealing to those around him their subconscious desire for transcendence over the ideologies that limit them.

Since it’d be an honour to be able to be such a gravitational force in the psychological growth of others, I’d chose to step into the shoes of Demian, as with it comes the ability to find every contradiction in the credence of man, to have an equal comprehension of all the polarities that exist, and to deconstruct the beliefs of others with pure knowledge.

Aiman Haziq Bin Hairel Anuar (16)
I couldn’t believe what she had just said. Especially since I had always considered her my best friend


I can’t believe what she had just said, especially since I had always considered her my best friend. Not to mention, it was through email as well!
It was already a bad day. I was working on some online work when the internet crashed! I then clumsily spilt coffee all over my brand-new shirt! What came next was an email from her. We had grown quite close and now she suddenly emailed to say that she never wanted to see me again!

Flabbergasted, I re-read the email before noticing a video attached to it. The video was disturbing. It depicted my friend inside the cabin of an airplane, seated amongst other passengers and was staring directly into the camera. The cabin surroundings were suddenly lit ablaze and the other passengers could be heard screaming, but my friend, she silently sat there and never broke eye-contact with the camera. The video then abruptly ended. I was left shaken. I brushed it off thinking it was some sick prank. Nothing that modern technology nor a revolting humour couldn’t handle.

It then struck me; the internet was still down. I could not have received that email!

Some minutes later, it was all over the news. An airplane had crashed, killing all aboard it. I searched for her email. It was no longer there.
I sat dazed and dumbfounded….my friend was amongst the victims. 

Shee Jia En (15)
I couldn’t believe what she had just said. Especially since I had always considered her my best friend
 

The cold air whistled its breathy tune across the winter sky. Wind howled its raspy tune across the field of our neighbourhood. Like a relentless greedy ogre, it ate up everything that stood in its way.

My legs were trapped under a concrete wall, a glass piece slithered through my flesh in red. Enduring the weight of pain, I tried to move. A pair of feet in shoes appear in my vision. It was Ella. There was a scar on her face, dust and black shows the trace of a vast tornado. Filled with joy and hope I stretched out my hand for a pull, but the cold voice struck me.

‘I have never considered you my friend.’ , this cold voice had tore my heart into forty-eight pieces. ‘Now, goodbye…’

I was confused , I want to know the reason. When I turned my head to seek a cracking voice, I saw another concrete wall falling towards me.

At one last glimpse, I saw her silhouette vanish into the darkness. I closed my eyes, but I will never know the reason why. 

Ong Chen Xi (13)
How I fared during the lockdown
 

COVID-19 has led the world into turmoil. Strangely enough, a microscopic three-dimensional dot has managed to infect and take the lives of millions, wreck the global economy and lock us in our homes. Personally, while I am fortunate enough to not be infected by the coronavirus, my daily life has indeed experienced some monumental shifts.

Naturally, the lockdown had all schools closed, and many had shifted to online lessons, particularly on a relatively obscure online chat service known as “Zoom”. Originally, online lessons were a minor culture shock for me, but eventually I accustomed to it. In essence, regular classes and online classes were the same thing, but they also have a lot of differences. For one, regular classes are formal, while online lessons, conversely, are rather casual and informal. Students are not mandated to wear their uniforms, and there was an overall laid-back atmosphere in the online classes. One complaint I would like to make, however, is that connection errors are frequent which results in classes ending later. However, I still believe that the pros outweigh the cons.

Ironically, the maelstrom that is COVID-19 has opened the way for us in lockdown to learn new skills. In my case, I learned how to jump rope. Although rope skipping was initially challenging for me, I was required by the teacher to practise it as part of my physical education assessment. The basic principles of rope skipping are rhythm and timing. Once you can find your rhythm, skipping is much easier of a skill to master. Similarly, while I struggled in the first few weeks, but once I got the hang of it, I was able to do 100 skips per minute. Nowadays, I practise at least five times a week, which is a moderate amount in my opinion.

All in all, I have fared quite well in lockdown, especially compared to the unfortunate victims of the coronavirus. However, I still look forward to when the lockdown has ended, as I can’t wait to go back to the outside world. 

Lim Yong Le (17)
How I fared during the lockdown 


When the order came for Malaysia to be put under lockdown, the ensuing media frenzy and public distress made it abundantly clear that this jarring change in societal norms and restriction of mobility frustrated many. I however, whooped with joy at the news! What followed that initial command was a seemingly never-ending series of extensions and new regulations, all of which I met with equal vigour and cheer. For me, such a long period of time away from social interaction is my version of paradise. I am an introvert after all, and already spent most of my time at home anyway. So honestly, there was no feeling of being “held against my will in my own home” as many members of the public dramatically put it. Instead, I found myself with more time to kick back with a good book, watch highly recommended movies and rekindle my passion in musicals. Of course, I didn’t abandon my studies! I juggled a variety of online lessons, revision and homework, finding the more flexible schedules very liberating. Overall, I daresay I enjoyed my lockdown experience, and went back to school with a heavy heart, albeit excited to see my friends. 

Marissa Pui Wei Shuen (15)   
I couldn’t believe what he/she had just said. Especially since I had always considered him/her my best friend
 

I couldn’t believe what she had said. Especially since I had always considered her my best friend. I trembled as I left the house. I looked around for a bit, and decided to go riding. 

A loud ‘whoop’ left my mouth. I dangerously lifted my arms in the air and stretched them out wide as I could. I was on the back of an absolutely gorgeous chestnut mare, and I felt she could take me anywhere I needed to go. For the moment however, she was taking me through the forest, away from that dreadful gray house behind us.

I placed my hands back on her crest (the horse’s neck) and we galloped further and further through the forest, where golden locks streamed through patches in the leaves above us. A few meters to our right I could already catch glimpses of another rider on a jet-black horse just overtaking us. I gritted my teeth.

‘Hee-yah!’

We raced further and further, until we were finally neck and neck, until I saw the fallen log laying a bit in front of us. I jolted, and she jolted with me, and I drew her up and we stopped. Our companions, meanwhile, soared across the log and turned back to face us.  

Anuzsa Mailvaganam  (16)
If I could step into the shoes of a storybook character for a year, who would I want to be?

 
If I were given the chance to take the place of a storybook character for a year, I think I would definitely pick Jo March from the book, Little Women by Louisa May Alcott.

To start off, I find Jo March’s character immensely similar to my own. She is the second child in her family, an outspoken tomboy, has a high temper and is geeky and clumsy which are precisely all the traits that I would use to describe to myself. Jo March loves activity and hates being left out of anything. I truly admire her for having such broad and mature thinking, able to realise and understand that a woman should not be tied to such mediocre standards and rules. Jo also has a great passion for literature and writing; another trait that I find very similar to mine. I would have loved to be in her place, composing plays for her sisters to perform and writing stories for the newspaper. The life that Jo March lives is a completely intriguing and fascinating one and there is not a day that goes by when I don’t wish to live in her world. Her independence, passion and sacrifices for her family just makes me love her all the more. I think she is, by far, one of the most wonderful fictional characters ever created and inspires many young girls to always believe in themselves no matter what. She is strong and brave and I hope to become at least half the woman that she was one day.  

Kymberlea Wong Kym Lea (14)
I couldn’t believe what he/she had just said. Especially since I had always considered him/her my best friend
 

I couldn’t believe what he had just said. Especially since I had always considered him my best friend.

“But, Dad,” I said, perched on the old Corvette, “you can’t just go. You’re my only friend.”

“Your mother says differently,” he said gruffly, continuing to stuff his bags and boxes into the boot. “And as much as I hate to say, Marianna, you’re staying. I can’t bring you with me.”

“Why not? I’m never going to get a date to prom. I’m never getting a friend in school. Ever. No-one’s going to miss me if I go to Mexico!”

Dad paused. He adjusted his big, round glasses, then gently patted me on the head. His long red beard tickled my leg. His face was tired, dark circles peeking out under his eyes. “Marianna,” he said gently, “you’ll be fine. You’re a smart girl. I chose that school myself. It will be hard, but I can’t come back to see you, alright? I’ll send more books. In fact,” Dad bent over, rummaged around his boot, and fished out a crumpled piece of paper.

“What’s this?” I sniffled, rubbing my nose as I took it from him. It was a redemption voucher for Lander’s Home. I looked up in shock, sliding off the car as I rushed over to Dad.

“But Mom’s never going to let me--”

“Marianna, you’re a smart girl. It’s a tough time for you. She has to let you get a computer..” He pulled me into a big hug. “Stay safe, and keep writing. I’ll always be there. Alright?”

“Alright,” I whispered, as big, fat tears slid down my cheeks. 

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