A few months ago a friend of mine decided that she would enter the first chapter contest for the writing convention (LDStorymakers) that we went to this weekend. She encouraged me to enter as well. You know how it goes. "You have to enter with me. Don't make me do it alone. Come on, Jo, you're a good writer." Stuff like that.
Well, since I did have a first chapter that had been through the wringer several times I decided to go for it. Why not? I was guaranteed to get at least four critiques out of it, right? Right.
During lunch today they held the award ceremonies. I have to admit that I envisioned what it would be like for the title of my book to come up on the black screen in big, yellow letters. The little thrill that would run through me if my name was read. I thought about how cool it would be to take third place. Or maybe second place. More likely third.
When they started with fourth place I thought, "Oh great, there were enough entries that they went out to four places? And I wasn't fourth place?" I clapped for the woman (because I know her and her story is very cool) and sort of stopped paying attention. Third place-that lemon pie was really tart. Second place-I wonder if they have any more rolls. First place.
Holy freaking cow.
The title New Sight came up on the screen.
My name came up under it. MY name. Then they said it all out loud. Someone probably should have taken a picture. I'm sure I sat there for a heartbeat with a stupefied look on my face. Jaw was probably hanging open as well. No, I know my mouth hung open after I uttered the words, "No way." Good thing no one had a camera now that I think about it. Those pictures are terribly unflattering.
So I won! Wow. Big wow. Still dumfounded. And happy. Squealing inside like a little girl, actually.
The best part? (You thought that was it, didn't you?) The best bit is that later in the day the agent I pitched to yesterday ended up walking into the bathroom at the same time as me. She actually told me congratulations.
First off, she remembered me. Second off, she spoke to me.
Now, if only my entire book reflected the level of apparent awesomeness as the first chapter. And it could still use some work.
I think this one puts aspiring author ahead!