Ka Touch was written in 2005. This is my first writing in Khmer. I wrote a few short stories before this one but they were in English. I posted them in the forums. I received both critics and encouragement to keep writing and people asked if I was about to publish any book soon.
But this one is special. I wrote it to send for competition. It was advised not to write about love. I don’t know why they limit the topic but that was Ok for me. I was ready.
I think I spent 3 months in writing it. It was very difficult. The Khmer Unicode at that time didn’t work quite well. It crashed many times on Microsoft word. I didn’t care to learn to type with Limon which is more supported in Windows.
I ended up by using Open Office and type the whole story in Khmer Unicode.
The story won the 2nd price of Nou Hach Short Story award. I went to receive the award and met a lot of Cambodian writers.
Thank Prof. Teri Shaffer Yamada for her initial idea to organize the event. It encourages many talent Cambodian writers to show their works.
Later on, Koh Santepheap, a very popular local newspaper at that time had picked up the story and published it on their pages. I was known and remembered. People in my village seeks to see me and thank me for writing about our village.
People from my working place also send their congratulation. It was a success for me. I can call myself a “writer”.
One or 2 years later, I adapt the story into English and name it “The Rice Field”.
If you can read Khmer, you can download and read “Ka Touch” for free. It’s the original version I sent for competition.
Enjoy your reading!