Artwork by Minna Leunig
Artwork by Minna Leunig
WORK SACKS ME two days before Christmas. Not ‘sacks’, not officially. My manager says he doesn’t intend on giving me further shifts. That they’re looking to get someone more permanent, rely less on their casual staff.

‘And there were some complaints,’ he says.

‘What complaints?’ I say.

‘I’ll let you know if we need you,’ he says.

At Christmas lunch I tell my mother I’ve decided to come home for a little while. Stay a few months or so. I need to focus on my writing. My mother carries her disapproval around her mouth. ‘What’s the real reason?’ she says. ‘Would you tell me if things weren’t working out?’

I tell her I would.

But I’ve gotten good at keeping things from my mother.