Esther Byrne

Today is the final day of the challenge:

This has been a difficult but enlightening experience for me, showing me that there are more genres out there than I had previously believed, and that non-fiction can be just as beautiful as fiction.

I previously thought I probably wouldn’t ever write non-fiction, so trying something like this was my way of pushing myself outside my comfort zone, and it has inspired me to try non-fiction again in the future.

The final prompt we were given was ‘awe and wonder’. I am a nature enthusiast, and am frequently awestruck by our world, especially mountains, lakes and forests. However, for this challenge I decided to choose something much smaller, but equally awesome.

As an amateur mycologist, I like to gather and study fungi, and to take spore prints of them. This can be done by placing a mushroom onto paper, covering it with a bowl and leaving it overnight. The mushroom releases its spores and leaves a beautifully detailed imprint behind.

I decided to capture that moment with the story below. See you for the next challenge!


Spore print

I am like a small child as I place you on the dark paper; tingling with anticipation at the beautiful pattern you will give – art and nature perfectly combined in one.

The shade you produce will tell me who you are; confounding my expectations when your gills reveal a different name to the one I had expected.

Hours later, it’s the moment of truth. I am alight with glee as I lift you up and come face to face with the mushroom ghost you have left behind.

You are so generous, and yet, I will never learn all your secrets…




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