12- A Delicate Swoon
Whew, I can’t believe I finally finished my story and even procured the blessing of my fellow writing group members. Three thumbs up! I send it off to the writing contest, and then proceed to forget about it because in the meantime I’ve started my radiation treatments. The first week or so is a breeze, and I am feeling relatively sanguine about the whole business. By week three, I’m hurting, and by week five, I’m not sure I can take much more. And then miraculously it is over.
Back to recuperating again, I turn my energy full force onto my writing. Brenda has suggested web writing, and it turns out to be exactly the niche I was looking for. I discover the world of zines, and what with the quick turnaround time on my submissions and reader feedback, it’s perfect.
I have to admit that at first, I felt a bit exposed, putting my writings out there on the web for all the world to view. I can still hear Mom’s voice in my ear warning me about stranger danger, and I suppose in some sense, my readers are relative strangers. I mean, I’ve never met any of them face-to-face, and guess I’m not too likely to. Still, in a funny sort of way, that gives me a degree of anonymity and makes it okay, kind of like talking to strangers on airplanes.
One day, as I’m checking my email on my Blackberry for the tenth time that morning, I spot the joyful word “congratulations” in a subject line. What could this be? OMG, my story has won the contest! Sweet. I don’t believe this, I absolutely don’t believe this. I am jumping up and down hootin’ and hollerin’. My husband and son come tearing into the room. “Mom?” my son asks dubiously, “You okay?”
“Oh, sorry to scare you guys,” I babble. “I’m just so happy. You know that story I wrote? The one that you made me take out all references to you? It just won first place in the competition.”
“We thought you were hurt,” my husband says reproachfully.
“No, no, just ecstatically happy. Only think, a mere six months ago, I had never written anything. And now, look at me.” I am gathering momentum and can’t be stopped. “I owe it all to my wonderful team of oncologists, my writing group, and yes, you, my family…” And here I break off to flash what I hope is a magical smile.
I notice out of the corner of my eye that they are both looking at me somewhat oddly. What? Suddenly I catch myself feeling a bit woozy. Whoa, the room is swaying. My hand flies up to my forehead, and I am falling into a swoon… My last thought before strong arms reach out to break my fall, is—hey, this is even better than the movies. I finally got it just right.
And this concludes the 12 part serial story “Just Write”. Hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!