Stories


The Commuting Book began as a humble homage to centuries of storytelling - something which we believe to be an essential fibre in the very fabric of what it means to be human. We present a diverse range of pieces to better represent our many different interests and beliefs  ... a story meaning little to one may mean a lot to another. This is the wonderful wisdom of literature! We have some beautiful short stories and poetry written by Year 8 and Year 10 students. These will take but a minute to read. We also have essays, non-fiction pieces, book extracts, more poems, and short stories, by both published and unpublished writers.  Most of these might take 5 -10 minutes to read.  None of them will take more than 20 minutes, at most.  Time well spent.  

Stories on the Go

I am lost in countless dizzying turns and endless corridors. A bare light bulb flickers as I pass beneath it. I flinch involuntarily. Ping! The familiar we ...More

Fiction, Mystery
Tallulah Raumati Costa | The commuting Book
Tallulah Raumati Costa

September 22   ●  4 min read

Nobody knew who he was. Or where he came from. Only that he lived on the traffic island in the middle of the intersection and had one arm. When he ...More

Fiction, Mystery
Lilah Hughes | The commuting Book
Lilah Hughes

September 22   ●  4 min read

I remember the clock He liked to count down Whether we liked it or not, Whether we smiled or frowned He hung in my house On the nursery wall We saw him as big ...More

Fantasy & Science Fiction, Fiction
Hannah Burns | The commuting Book
Hannah Burns

September 22   ●  min read

Meet her in the forest You’ll find her fascinating She may not welcome you but she has no choice in this The tree which she is forever linked to ...More

Drama, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Fiction
Sophia Williamson | The commuting Book
Sophia Williamson

September 22   ●  1 min read

When someone tells you to picture a magician, what do you think of? Daniel Radcliffe, complete with a wand and broomstick? Or perhaps a cheesy performer with ...More

Biography, Memoir, Non Fiction
Amelia Kirkness | The commuting Book
Amelia Kirkness

September 22   ●  9 min read

Flowers. There are a lot of flowers. Every day someone crouches by me, one hand on their heart and the other holding a bunch of flowers. Lilies, l ...More

Non Fiction, NZ History
Olivia Ruland | The commuting Book
Olivia Ruland

September 22   ●  1 min read

Grayce huddled in the dark of her bedroom. The slithering sound came again, something scraping, knocking. Scrape-knock-knock-slide-slither. Somewhere ...More

Action & Adventure, Drama, Fiction, Mystery
Sarah-Kate Simons | The commuting Book
Sarah-Kate Simons

September 16   ●  3 min read

Fox

They didn’t want my name to be conventional. It’s a quick, sharp sound, a sound that belongs with cricket chirps and snapping twigs, brilliant as a flash ...More

Fantasy & Science Fiction
Sarah-Kate Simons | The commuting Book
Sarah-Kate Simons

September 16   ●  3 min read

Miraculously the Yellow dagger Somehow appeared on the Table next to the Elevating bottle Really, this was all very strange Yet, started making sense ...More

Fantasy & Science Fiction
Hannah Share | The commuting Book
Hannah Share

September 16   ●  1 min read

Hazel leaned over, brushing her lips against her sister’s forehead. “Goodbye.” She fumbled with the window, shoving it open, greeted by a gust of cold ...More

Action & Adventure, Drama
Emma Warwick | The commuting Book
Emma Warwick

September 7   ●  3 min read

“I”m pregnant again”.    I was measuring flour into the sieve and gently banging it against the heel of my hand.  He was hunched over the co ...More

Biography, Food
Sile Mannion | The commuting Book
Sile Mannion

September 7   ●  4 min read

Get your daily dose of words for those who can’t live without them or who don’t usually have time to read. Find a QR code on a bus, scan it ...More

The Commuting Book News
The Commuting Book | The commuting Book
The Commuting Book

May 11   ●  min read

Today, my feelings are too big for my body They catch and hold fast in my throat They stream down my face And burn on my skin May they emerge as ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

May 11   ●  1 min read

The murmur of voices Are symphony to flashing lights Tapping keys Coloured lines of code Changing Adjusting Advancing. Jumbles of letters Make up ...More

Non Fiction
Chloe Morrison-Clarke | The commuting Book
Chloe Morrison-Clarke

March 27   ●  2 min read

To send a letter you must have something important to say. Got it? Good, now write it on a piece of paper, then pop it in an envelope and seal it with your sp ...More

Mia Pagan | The commuting Book
Mia Pagan

March 27   ●  min read

Take some Milky Way dust Mix in some galaxies Wrench some light from inside a black hole It should be spaghettified and tender Knead in some rusty coloured Ma ...More

Alice Mcpike | The commuting Book
Alice Mcpike

March 27   ●  1 min read

Stories for Canterbury Calling for writers up and down the country to support the emotional recovery of the region As family and friends of the dead an ...More

The Commuting Book News
The Commuting Book | The commuting Book
The Commuting Book

March 16   ●  min read

“What do you intend to do about this disgraceful situation?” Alison Carrington seethed. Mayor Harper stared at the outraged, elderly woman, like a man ...More

Drama, Fiction
Andrew M. Bell | The commuting Book
Andrew M. Bell

February 24   ●  22 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Stories Chapter E ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

February 24   ●  5 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Stories ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

February 24   ●  7 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Stories Chapte ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

February 24   ●  14 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Sto ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

February 24   ●  3 min read

“Come on, Moon, it’s time to hunt.” Sunrise went first to check if there was any danger. Moon tried to go before Sunrise had said the coast wa ...More

Bronnie Homer | The commuting Book
Bronnie Homer

February 24   ●  4 min read

Zzzzz ….. zzzz ……. An annoying noise was causing hindrance to my much desired afternoon nap. I somehow manage to open my eyes partially, and with half-c ...More

Srinika Guha | The commuting Book
Srinika Guha

February 23   ●  4 min read

knitted scarves wrap around her neck while legs freeze beneath leopard-                                print legg ...More

Elizabeth Steel | The commuting Book
Elizabeth Steel

February 23   ●  1 min read

Help us build a map! We are mapping real places in New Zealand mentioned in books. Rivers, mountains, towns and cities, famous buildings and monuments and ...More

The Commuting Book News
The Commuting Book | The commuting Book
The Commuting Book

January 24   ●  1 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Stories Chap ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

December 19   ●  14 min read

When I pick her up she feels warm and frail. She’s like a giraffe sticking her neck high above the canopy searching for a decent snack. When she ...More

Fiction
Blake Lucas | The commuting Book
Blake Lucas

December 19   ●  1 min read

You can do it for fitness You can do it for play You can ride your bike All of the day When you drive in a car It creates pollution Join with me Start the bike ...More

Fiction
Cooper Harris | The commuting Book
Cooper Harris

December 19   ●  1 min read

Feijoas roll down the roof to be pecked by the birds startling the rats which scurry above. A grimy workbench dusty with tools next to a soggy, wet lea ...More

Fiction
Georgia Daniell | The commuting Book
Georgia Daniell

December 19   ●  1 min read

‘I swear by Apollo Physician and Asclepius and Hygieia and Panacea and all the gods and goddesses, making them witnesses, that I will fulfill according to m ...More

Drama, Fiction
Fiona Sussman | The commuting Book
Fiona Sussman

November 20   ●  14 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Stories ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

November 17   ●  13 min read

As a chef I am often asked what I most enjoy cooking, what my favourite dishes are and what I love to eat. Most people assume it is intricate multi-course ...More

Food, Non Fiction
Jonny Schwass | The commuting Book
Jonny Schwass

November 17   ●  18 min read

Being the middle child of five girls and three boys in 1940’s and 50’s in my native Ireland, I never had the chance to actually own a bicycle in ...More

Action & Adventure, History, Memoir, Non Fiction
Catherine Byrne | The commuting Book
Catherine Byrne

November 17   ●  4 min read

The baby’s finally asleep.  The father is home from work. I haven’t been alone in days. This is it…. “She’s asleep”…”I’m ju ...More

Drama, Non Fiction
Jennifer Rankin | The commuting Book
Jennifer Rankin

November 17   ●  1 min read

Google maps you take me though the underpass fast on my bike in the night my lights flash on the shapes of down and outs the louts, layabouts who sh ...More

Non Fiction, Travel & Environment
Melanie Dixon | The commuting Book
Melanie Dixon

November 17   ●  1 min read

The trick is to hear the voices in the rain but not to listen. What’s the phrase? Feel the fear and do it anyway. Well not only can I feel the fear but I can ...More

Ciaran Fox | The commuting Book
Ciaran Fox

September 22   ●  2 min read

She chewed her biro, and read the evaluation form. “On a scale of one to five, five being highest, how much did you enjoy this activity?” One. “On ...More

Fiction
Michele Clark McConnochie | The commuting Book
Michele Clark McConnochie

September 22   ●  3 min read

Eve is busy setting the long thin tables – fork knife fork knife fork knife – and doesn’t see him approach. “Do you want some help?” Sh ...More

Fiction
Rachael King | The commuting Book
Rachael King

September 21   ●  12 min read

Jerry and his friend, Ross, were playing in Jerry’s sandpit. Charlie appeared. “What are you playing?” Charlie asked Jerry. “Planes.” J ...More

Action & Adventure, Fiction
Andrew M. Bell | The commuting Book
Andrew M. Bell

September 21   ●  5 min read

The time had come. In the warm darkness of his egg, the flamingo chick moved. Crack! His mother stood up. She fussed about, touching the egg gent ...More

Action & Adventure, Fiction, Travel & Environment
Andrew M. Bell | The commuting Book
Andrew M. Bell

September 21   ●  14 min read

It’s what I could do to help Fleur out. Family is family. The last Friday each month, we’d drive into the city from opposite directions, and in the motel c ...More

Fiction
Heather McQuillan | The commuting Book
Heather McQuillan

September 22   ●  2 min read

I ate my brother. I was always fond of him, looked up to him. He was older than me. I measured myself against him. We stood back to back. At first I onl ...More

Fiction
Helen Heath | The commuting Book
Helen Heath

September 20   ●  2 min read

“And the prize for the bravest pirate goes to …” Greybeard, the oldest of all the pirates, held up a piece of paper and waved it around dramaticall ...More

Fiction
Michele Clark McConnochie | The commuting Book
Michele Clark McConnochie

September 22   ●  5 min read

First, find a location. Find a shabby farm that keeps its neighbours at arm’s length. Find a house with a rusted roof, with guttering that dribbles ...More

Fantasy & Science Fiction, Fiction
Zoë Meager | The commuting Book
Zoë Meager

September 22   ●  5 min read

Pull-my-Finger the Giant only had one joke, probably like your dad or grandad. But he was very fond of it and he told it as often as he could. This was it: ...More

Humor & Comedy
Michele Clark McConnochie | The commuting Book
Michele Clark McConnochie

September 20   ●  6 min read

John paused and turned away from his screen to glance at the steaming cup of coffee. Something felt a little off but he couldn’t place his finger on it ...More

Action & Adventure, Drama, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Fiction
Steven Moe | The commuting Book
Steven Moe

September 22   ●  18 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Stories ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

September 12   ●  13 min read

The dragonfly’s eyes are made up of multiple hexagons. Inside each hexagon is a black and white picture of my face. I’ve printed the photos from my file ...More

Fiction
Gail Ingram | The commuting Book
Gail Ingram

August 31   ●  2 min read

Find the hidden sequence of words: the first letter of each makes the puzzle answer. e.g. he offers trust = HOT Sometimes fresh air feels like waking up after d ...More

Humor & Comedy
Raewyn Dawson | The commuting Book
Raewyn Dawson

August 1   ●  1 min read

It’s been nearly 70 years since my children left home. That sounds ridiculous but I am 120 years old. When they left, my house felt empty. I began to n ...More

Fiction, Travel & Environment
Kat Miller | The commuting Book
Kat Miller

August 1   ●  12 min read

It’s morning. I know this because the clock says 7.23 and a finger of light is trying to pull back the curtains. My room faces east. So that make ...More

Fiction
Rachael King | The commuting Book
Rachael King

August 1   ●  22 min read

If you are on the bus, go to QR Code 0007 to read this chapter in English or QR Code 0016 to read in Te Reo. To read previous chapters go to Storie ...More

Fiction
Sarina Dickson | The commuting Book
Sarina Dickson

August 1   ●  10 min read

‘How’s Alex?’ Hope said. She and Molly were sitting in a café by the river in early spring drinking tea from the same pot. Molly sighed, lo ...More

Fiction
Pip Adam | The commuting Book
Pip Adam

August 1   ●  19 min read

because of their size they gather crystals and clouds sharp and sparse collections of sun-catchers until that first nasty week in June then they look s ...More

Travel & Environment
Amy Paulussen | The commuting Book
Amy Paulussen

August 1   ●  1 min read

It was a glimpse into Paradise. The sun caught the old town first, its jumble of faded pastels glowing like the gilded ceilings of the Vatican ...More

Fiction
Mandy Hager | The commuting Book
Mandy Hager

August 1   ●  22 min read

Extract from Mazarine (Chapter Twelve) Twelve I hadn’t expected Sophie Greenaway to be at work in the middle of the summer break and so soon after he ...More

Action & Adventure, Fiction, Psychological Thriller
Charlotte Grimshaw | The commuting Book
Charlotte Grimshaw

August 1   ●  22 min read

Con walks down the streets of Newtown from Berhampore, past the damp, narrow houses, tipped into the wind, cold rain spitting into his face. There’s the ...More

Drama
Julie Hill | The commuting Book
Julie Hill

August 1   ●  14 min read