Encounter

Did you ever meet a famous person?

I’ve actually met several, but I’ll tell you about one of the most meaningful experiences for me. I’ve met Chris Colfer on multiple occasions, but there is one time in particular that stands out to me.

I attended every book signing on his The Land Of Stories tours. Although I often felt like one of the oldest people there, I didn’t mind because he had been a huge influence to me. I also really enjoyed his books, despite the fact that they’re written for kids. I’ve always loved fairy tales and I’ve enjoyed stories that involve rewriting them to make it something new. (Like Once Upon A Time)

Anyway, I was too starstruck to make sense of my words the first time I met him. So the second time I did, I felt more composed. As a result, I was able to ask him about his writing process. As a writer, I kept trying to find ways to attempt writing books that never worked for me. So when I had the chance to talk to one of my favorite people, who happened to be an author, I figured I would ask him. He gave me really good advice: No matter how much you tell yourself it’s not good enough, just keep writing. Don’t stop. Don’t go back and edit anything until you’re done. Because once you do, you won’t finish.

And I found that advice really helpful. Ever since I had that conversation with Chris, I found myself doing what he said. By doing so, I was able to finish more pieces. I was able to realize that I would always be my own worst critic, which he also told me.  I couldn’t let that stop me from writing. I couldn’t let that stop me from finishing anything.

It’s one thing to hear that advice from every day people, but getting real advice like that from someone I admire put things into perspective to me. I’ll always hold that advice in my heart, and I’ll always be thankful to Chris for helping me overcome one of my biggest struggles as a writer.

One Line

Open a book and use a line from that book to start a story.

Departure

As she placed her shoes in a bin and stepped into the scanner, she felt as though the security guard was going to see right through her and find out her secret.  “You’re all set,” the man said, as she stepped out of the machine.

Trying to stop her hands from trembling, she took her shoes and suitcase off the counter and waited for her companion to finish. Watching him step through the scanner, she took several deep breaths, telling herself that nothing bad was going to happen. She avoided his gaze when he joined her at the end of the hallway to the gates. Neither of them spoke, as they travelled down the long hall.

The boarding process had already begun when they reached the gate to Phoenix. He pulled her aside and set his bag on the ground. Before he could even speak, she blurted out, “You shouldn’t have done it – you shouldn’t have doubted me – we’re leaving a trail of mistakes,” she said. “They’re going to find us.”

‘No one is going to find us,” he told her, taking her hands in his. “It’s better that we leave before the police find out what we did.” His final words of comfort did nothing to calm her nerves. She was in full panic mode, and he seemed so calm as he picked up his duffel bag off the ground. “Call me when you land in Seattle.”

An announcement for the final boarding call to Phoenix meant their time was up. Tears formed in her eyes, as he took a step toward the gate. She grabbed his arm and said, “This isn’t a good idea. We’re making a huge mistake.”

“We’ve already made a huge mistake,” he said, pulling his arm out of her grasp. “Stay calm. The more you bring attention to yourself, the more guilty you’re going to look.” All of the passengers had boarded the aircraft by the time he reached the gate. He turned to face her and gave one final wave, before disappearing down the jet bridge. 

Dragging her suitcase by the handle, she walked several gates down and sat in a seat near the back wall. She still had an hour before her flight took off. Few passengers walked by, as she sat in the corner, arms protectively crossed over her chest. 

Isolated from the rest of the world, she couldn’t stop the negative thoughts from entering her mind. This was the end of her life in her hometown, and the end of her friendship with him. One moment in her life had changed everything. She was living on borrowed time.

She wanted to turn back time, return to that moment, and do things differently. She wanted to leave the airport and drive until she couldn’t anymore. She wanted to hop on the plane to Phoenix and go with him. She wanted to do anything that would change her fate.

But there was nothing she could do. It was already done. Calls were already coming across police radios, and any one of those calls could change her future. He was taxiing to the runway on his way to Phoenix. She sat, hopelessly, at the gate to Seattle, counting the seconds on her watch.

At eight o’clock in the evening, the Baltimore airport was nearly deserted.

In Her Shoes

This prompt comes from dailyteachingtools.com  If you could be a character in any book, TV show, or movie, who would you be and why?

The character I have always related to the most is Hermione Granger. I grew up wishing I could be her. I have always felt a connection to that character. She’s a girl who understands the desire to read and learn, like the Ravenclaw that I am. She believes in friendship, goodness, helping others even when she shouldn’t. I feel like I could put myself in her shoes, and if I were to enter a book, I’d want to be comfortable as that character. She’s strong and fights for what she believes in, and I value those characteristics. I may not be as brave as her, but I think it’s all the more reason I’d want to be her. A person has to live by experience, and she does, and I try to.  I’ve always admired her character and felt like I could relate to her, so why wouldn’t I want to be her?

Also, it’s the only way I’d ever get to attend Hogwarts.

Timelessness

This prompt comes from Writer’s Digest. You have discovered what appears to be an ordinary room. But as soon as you enter the room, time stops for you. When you leave the room, time picks up right where you left off. What do you use this room for?

This would be a library full of endless bookshelves with books of every kind. All I ever want to do is read and write. There simply isn’t enough time in a day to read as much as I’d like to. I have so many books that I need to read and simply don’t, because there’s always something else that needs to be done. This room would be full of fictional stories, history books, writing prompts, nonfiction, or anything that could inspire me to write.

Reading has always been my escape. When I curl up with a book, I can feel the presence of reality slip away. The characters become real, the places, and the emotions that I feel in that moment. But I don’t get to do it enough. If I had a room that could stop time, and allow me to read as much as I wanted without missing anything, I’d be spending most of my time frozen in that room.