NNWM check-in 1

I am so excited to see all the different writing projects you’re going to be working on this month. If you haven’t yet posted (or thought of) your goal, that’s ok. You can enter any time.  Here are the projects that some other readers are working on:

  • Chuck is going to write a paper for submission to an academic journal. (On what? I’m curious.)
  • Toshia is going to write something for her youth ministry’s newsletter.
  • Shanna is an overachiever and Foucault is her muse: a blog post on superheroes and monsters, a long paper using Heaney’s poem “Punishment” to illustrate her ideas on The Troubles and Discipline and Punishment. You still only get one prize, Shanna! (But I’m super-excited about your work.)
  • Cheryl is working on an article about family traditions– how they start, why they’re important, that sort of thing. She will decide later whether it ends up as a blog post or something more. Seems like a good magazine article to me, though.

You are all such interesting people with such interesting projects! Let me know how the writing goes.

I managed 2332 words yesterday! I don’t think I’ve written that much in one day without a babysitter since Jacob’s been born. It was surprising, but really fun. I don’t write on Sundays, but I’ll post something fun again on Monday.

Here’s an excerpt from my roughest of drafts, as promised:

“We are daughters of our Heavenly Father, who loves us, and we love him.” Becca mouthed the words along with the other girls, smoothed her skirt down behind her as she sat again. Announcements, song, prayer. It happened without her. The lesson was on… gossip? Becca couldn’t keep her mind on it. They were making analogies about tongues. Weird. Becca hated analogies. She wasn’t good at them. A thing was what it was, and not anything else. A tongue is not a wildfire. How could you eat with a wildfire? She understood it was supposed to be poetic or whatever, but it was just annoying.

No, Becca wasn’t much for poetry, but she was really good at counting. Fibonacci Sequence? Pi to its 50th decimal place? Lunchroom blackjack and binary languages? All fun and games. E and the golden ratio when she was looking for a challenge. So as Sister Johnson exhorted her class to something something something, Becca counted. 56 days since her last period. 42 since she and Jared had sex for the first time. 4 days since they’d last done it.

She counted by 4s, she counted by 7s, by whole integers and fractions, by odds and evens and it all added up to this—she’d thrown up every morning for the past two weeks during seminary. Her teacher had expressed concerns about an eating disorder. Her breasts hurt all the time, but Jared still liked them—well, he had four days ago. Her mom bought her a new bra, clucked about her little girl growing up. And Becca was tired All. The. Time. 6+6+6+6+6+6, 6×6, 6 squared, all became 42, plus two more weeks was 56. And 5+10+2 was 17, which was her age, and a senior in high school with a soccer scholarship to the Y where she would major in computer science… And 17 years plus 56 days added up to… 0 maybe. How to solve that equation?

Maybe she was just working out too hard. Being an athlete, plus dehydration and not enough sleep. No need to panic yet. But her heart knew the lie. A thing was what it was and not anything else.


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