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Artist + Writer

Anita Jawary

The Dickensian Challenge

Anita Jawary is an artist, poet, short story writer, speaker and storyteller.

She is also a fan of the writer Charles Dickens.

Why The Dickensian Challenge?


  Dickens wrote his novels in regular instalments,

  to a deadline. 

  If we could live our lives in that way,

  remembering that we have a deadline,

  how much more productive might they be?    

                                                                                      Anita Jawary, 2021

Why Write?
a fable by Anita Jawary

 Why do you write? asked the spider. 

Why do you spin? asked the fly. 

To live, replied the spider.

To live, replied the fly.


The spider had spent the whole day spinning his web. He laughed to see a fly land on his web, sit down at a desk, pull out pen and paper and begin to write. 

Why write? demanded the spider. 

To live, replied the fly. 

But you won’t live. I’m going to eat you.

The fly just smiled and went on writing. So the spider crept toward him, opened his mouth wide, and ate the fly.

That night the spider could not sleep. He turned this way and that on his web, but he could not get comfortable.  Angles and sharp edges kept digging into him. They dug into his ribs, they dug into his stomach, they dug into his temples, and they cramped up his knees.  

When the sun came up the spider saw that he had been sleeping on a bed of letters. 

He tried to unravel the letters, to detach them from his web. But each letter was stuck to the web and tangled up in it and would not come away.  The more the spider tried to detach the letters, the more they stuck. 

The spider waited on his web of letters for another fly to come along, but no fly came. They flew near, saw the letters, and flew right past his web. 

This won’t do! He cried. And as he couldn’t detach the letters from the web, he began to spin another layer of web over the letters, to hide them. 

He spun and spun from early morning till the evening, but still, no fly came to his web. 

And the more he tried to cover them up, the more the fly’s letters grew bigger and bigger. And as the night grew dark, the letters grew brighter and brighter. No fly came to the spider’s web, and the spider went to bed hungry. 

Again he could not sleep. He was hungry and the fly’s letters once again kept digging into him. They dug into his ribs, they dug into his stomach, they dug into his temples and they cramped up his knees. 

In the morning the spider was exhausted and hungry and found it rather difficult to move. Slowly he spun yet another layer of web, to hide the letters even more. He spun and spun all day, but no fly came to his web. And when night came, he saw the letters had grown enormous, and they were now brighter than the whole starry sky.  

The spider lay down on his web and spun no more, while fly after fly flew overhead. 

Why do you spin? asked the fly


Why do you write? asked the spider.


To live, replied the spider. 


To live, replied the fly. 

Copyright Anita Jawary, 2013

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