Loose Change: Writers’ Biographies

Current prospects for the writers’ group please go to this page



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Scroll down or click here to read the overview of  Loose Change, including excerpts from each story!

Current Members

Bonnie Barski grew up in Minnesota and earned a Masters in literature from Middlebury University. She worked in advertising in Frankfurt, where her special fields were translating and writing texts. Her husband is the novelist Klaus Barski (Verlagskaree Award, 2008) whose books include “Exile Ibiza” and “Life Sentence on the Cote d’Azur”. Bonnie writes short stories and is currently working on a novel.

Dr Patricia Benstein has spent most of her life in Australia. She obtained a BA Honours and a Diploma of Education from the University of Melbourne, and a PhD from the University of Sydney. She has always been involved in spiritual work. In 2008, Patricia moved to Frankfurt, where she lectures in English at the Goethe University. In her spare time you will find her either writing stories or walking her dog.

Trisha FitzGerald was born and grew up in Ireland where she studied Graphic Design and Communications at the NCAD. Later she moved to Germany where her interest in creative writing grew. In 2003 her first published novel Making Tracks was EPPIE finalist for Best Single Title/Mainstream Novel. Over The Wall was a Golden Wings Award winner and EPPIE finalist 2009 (Best Single Title/Mainstream novel). Further novels are Casting Off, There and Back and The Cutting Line. Several of her short stories are included in A Place Between Worlds and Loose Change, both published anthologies by The Frankfurt Writers’ Group.

Here are some links where you can learn more about Trisha


Anthony Marais was born in Hollywood, California in 1966. In the 1980s he co-founded the Los Angeles pop group The Squids before moving to Paris, France to study language and art history. He studied anthropology at UC Berkeley and archaeology at Simon Fraser University in Canada. Since 1995, he has been living in Germany where he teaches writing and is an active part of cinema and literary communities.


link to Anthony’s profile on Amazon.

Isabelle de Pommereau is a correspondent for The Christian Science Monitor. She started her reporting career in 1989 after graduating from Columbia University’s School of Journalism as a Fulbright scholar from Paris. She lives in Frankfurt with her husband and their three children.

Elizabeth Press was born in New York City and grew up in Westport, Connecticut. After getting her B.A. in International Relations from Tufts University in Boston, she worked in Strasbourg, France and Berlin, Germany as a journalist specialized in European politics. Elizabeth got her MSc in International Economics and Business from the Stockholm School of Economics. Currently she works in the IT industry and is a prominent blogger focused on technology, management and social media.

Kay Song was born in Jonju, South Korea in 1968, raised and educated in the U.S. and has been living in Germany since 2005. She has a B.A. in Studio Art from University of Dallas and is currently completing her course of studies for the UCLA Writer’s Program. She writes creative non-fiction and is currently writing a novel called ”Hot Water, No Ice.”

Don Taylor is a respected art director, an obscure novelist and a fearless stay-at-home dad.  He believes accolades and awards are great (he has a box-full gathering dust), but should not overshadow what we do today to improve tomorrow.  More of his fortune cookie philosophies can be found on Twitter @dontaylor26.


Loose change!

Have you heard about our new collection of short stories available on Amazon as a hard copy and Kindle? Click here to purchase a copy of Loose Change

Spanning cultures, generations and walks of life, we, The Frankfurt Writers’ Group, write fiction and non-fiction. The book is a collection of all our different writing styles, thoughts and experience regarding change. We talk about change in Germany from some of the darkest chapters of eastern expansion to Frankfurt in the 1970’s and Berlin after the fall of the Wall. Our introspection into change includes dark tales of heart break and violence, but also romance and irony. We explore spiritual transformations, deceit and emotional epiphanies. Change, or rather changes, in whatever form, come with life—and living.

Here’s a peek at the stories:

Fiction = F

Non-Fiction = NF

Street Singer by Bonnie Barski (NF)

“Some call me a street singer. Others say I’m a beggar when I pass my hat around…” sang the British musicians on the Hauptwache square in downtown Frankfurt.

The short one with closely-clipped hair, wearing a black t-shirt and bell-bottom jeans, played the guitar and sang into the microphone with a cockney accent. His tall, lanky partner had a scarf tied around his forehead to keep his hair away from his face. Crooning and shaking a tambourine, he danced to the music with the wispy ends of his scarf lifting and swaying to the rhythm.

On this afternoon in the time of the Beatles and swinging London, British beat music was at the height of its popularity…

The Crayfish Party by Elizabeth Press (F)

Crayfish carcasses littered the lawn, along with an assortment of empty liquor bottles and used napkins. Nobody else thought August in the Archipelago was melancholy except for Gustav. In fact, he found it to be the most miserable month in the whole Swedish year. It was destined to fall short of expectations and chance for redemption was scant. The early morning chill filled the air with premonitions of the inevitable.…

House in The Hawthorns by Trisha FitzGerald (F)

Her expression must have made Jill smirk. Even in the darkness, Fiona could see a small, meaningful grin quickly spreading across the young girl’s face. Jill’s smirk made Fiona smile. And so they smiled and smirked in silence for some moments, and while in reality only a few seconds elapsed it felt as though an eternity of understanding had passed between them. At last, Fiona realised what she’d been missing…

Manifestation by Kay Song (NF)

It’s Thursday night. I am going to a church called Living God with Agnes, one of my best friends. She invited me because she thought that she might manifest. Her writing is suffering and she needs divine intervention. In short, she needs to expel a demon that is crippling her creativity. At least, her creativity is still alive.

“I have a small headache,” she says.

“Really?” I couldn’t think of anything else to say.

“I think I might manifest tonight,”

The Murderer by Anthony Marais (F)

In case it isn’t clear, what you are reading has nothing to do with the writing in question, and my motivations for the present statement have nothing to do with being creative. Indeed, the above mentioned writing has been burned, today, and I can assure you that no one will ever know of the awkward confessions found within those pages. What you will learn in the following paragraphs is the inception of a plan to murder an innocent human being…

Hands of a Surgeon by Kay Song (NF)

“You have the hands of a surgeon or someone who could clean the inside of a shot gun,” Mark says to me, cradling my small hands. I have looked at my hands a thousand times and never thought of them like this. We are lying in bed in room 412 at the Argent hotel in San Francisco…

Transitions by Patricia Benstein (NF)

“Look, Papa, you’ll either come out of this operation alive or you’ll die in the process. Well, in that case, you won’t notice much and only we will know you’re gone.” My father smiled at my directness and temporarily tried to forget that his chest would be cut open the next day to replace his heart valve. Ten years after having had it done for the first time. He took the news with great equanimity, shrugging off any fears he might have had in total surrender to the medical experts and their verdict…

A German Family’s Path Toward European Reconciliation by Isabelle de Pommereau (NF)

As he swings along a dirt path, this tall, elegant man feels the weight of responsibility to see to it that Kreisau, laden with personal memories and important history, be used to promote a peaceful, united Europe. It was this vision for which his father died: It was here that his father and a group of his friends met secretly to reject the Nazis and plot a new, democratic Germany as part of a united Europe without Adolf Hitler…

“Wild” Ibiza by Bonnie Barski (NF)

Chris and I strolled along Ibiza harbor’s promenade, browsing through the hippie stands offering batiks, beachwear, jewellery trinkets, and other souvenirs. Here, the atmosphere was cheerful and upbeat, because most of the long-haired stand owners were only playing at being hippies until they went back to their universities to finish their educations…

The Long Way Round by Trisha FitzGerald (F)

The door slammed shut with a resounding bang, the vibration making the window panes rattle. Nola sat down on the back door step and began tying her shoe laces, tugging furiously at the worn strings.

“He can drown in his Hooker’s Green for all I care!” she muttered under her breath. “Choke on it!”

Nola stood up, swiped the dust off the seat of her jeans and grabbed the trolley case she’d packed so hurriedly only minutes before.

Staying Power, A Berlin Story by Elizabeth Press (F)

Andreas was very adept at hiding his contempt for the bygone country. What I did not know then was that behind his patronage of the trendiest hangouts in the former East were volumes of painful memories buried beneath the years of renovations. Almost a decade would go by before I understood that the Italian wines and caipirinhas could not take away childhood scars. The yuppy Tuscana Faktion was always more palatable for him than Ostalgie—nostalgia or life in the former East…

Impressions of the Transition from Expat to Immigrant by Anthony Marais (F)

We love in a different language, love people who cannot speak our mother tongue, have children who speak in idioms we cannot understand, and, in turn, become the children of parents who cannot ask us our opinions without an interpreter; and we come to discover that our love must be twofold: not only the person, but the culture must fill our hearts with pride. For we are acutely aware that this culture will be ours, offered as a dowry in exchange for our own.