Give me a feather and I’ll fly


credit: angelsghost

This is the title of a short story written by my writing friend SL Russell, known to our writing group as Sue R. The story now features in an anthology of creative writing from our group called The Write Idea.

The book is called A Wealth of Words, and has been published by us through the superb self-publishing website Our writing group meets monthly in North Kent at Leybourne Village Hall. if you would like more details and perhaps consider joining us, please email: and be assured of a warm welcome by our current members.

The Write Idea was the first such social writing group I joined around 16 years ago. Belonging to this circle of fellow writers – guys and gals – all with a love of creative writing, first launched me into this stimulating activity, one I had wanted to follow since school days.

I believe story-telling is almost an instinctive human need – part of the extra ingredient bequeathed to man by the creator – so we had the tools to decide our own destiny; part of what makes us human. At differing times within various cultures around the world, there was no written language. Stories would be told within the family or community and become part of that culture. We usually picture this as round a campfire or in a long house. Perhaps beside a lake teeming with fish, or in a forest bountiful with fruit and game. Maybe in a barren land where food was difficult to find.


Most tales had a moral message and from this various religious themes, myths and legends evolved. The pattern seems to have followed a similar pathway throughout the world, whether communities were interactive or totally isolated. Anthropologists tell us our collective ancestors all originally walked out of Africa, so the common thread must be in all our genes, spawning a common need to devise and tell stories. Told to a captive audience they would be memorised and handed down from one generation to the next, tweaked no doubt by each storyteller, to suit the lives of new listeners.

When written language began within each culture everything changed. Acquiring the skills of reading and writing means the individual can make their own decisions, not so dependent on the community. Yet community activities continue; within education, our working lives, families and social groups.

And so, to come full circle, it is wonderful to experience community within a writing group. It is a long time since we used the feathered quill but yes, we write our stories down. We also share them, sometimes reading them out loud. At such moments I revel in the joy of belonging to the local writing community, experiencing a deep connection to my companions, who have joined me on this journey first begun centuries ago.


Credit: main-aur-mera-mann

SL Russell’s story Give me a feather and I’ll fly is featured in a new anthology of creative writing from The Write Idea Writing Group.

A Wealth of Words  is available now to view or buy from on this link:


About Susan Pope

Writer, poet and author. Leader of Women's Writing Group
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