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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: The Manuscript (04/29/10)

TITLE: The Proposal
By Lisa Keck


Laurel turned over and looked at the clock. She didn’t have to be up for two more hours and knew it would be a long day so tried to get back to sleep. Sleep came and went and came again. She woke one minute before the buzzer, usually irritating, would have gone off. Nothing could irritate her today, not on this day full of hope. She showered extra thoroughly but couldn’t find the hair dryer. Alex must have it in her room so that means there’s no hope of me finding it. 65 miles per hour will have to do. She thought as she applied her makeup.

A quick breakfast with coffee was all she had time for. She poured another cup of coffee in her travel mug, grabbed her bag and then noticed the necklace. Can’t forget this. She put the necklace and earring set in her pocket and was out the door. She was determined not to make a fool or herself this time. She was also worried she wouldn’t get the chance to make a fool of herself this time. 200 people were expected at this writer’s conference and probably not enough consultation slots to go around. Various people, including writers, editors and one agent were on hand for evaluation, encouragement, and guidance.

Laurel figured she was bringing too many writing samples along but wasn’t sure who she’d get to talk to. She prepared devotionals, short stories written for Faithwriter’s Weekly Challenge and two proposals for her memoir. That was her focus: to get her testimony told in book form. She had a full proposal package with everything a certain editor asked for in case she got to meet with him. But if she didn’t get her first choice she had her other writing and a mini proposal to get advice on where to submit the manuscript. Proposal, what are we getting married? Sir, do you take this manuscript to be your next published book? Laurel's thoughts amused her as she drove down the freeway.

Consultations were awarded by how soon you signed up for conference. There was a number on your badge dictating when you’d get to go to the consultation table and sign up. Laurel was working the consultation table and watched as groups of 10 came up and started filling in the time slots. Some consultants looked rather lonely but her editor was popular. Another volunteer was covering the table while she relayed a message and then her group of numbers was called. She walked up and got the last consultation with the editor she wanted to speak to.

After lunch she made sure her makeup was fresh and hair was brushed and the puzzle piece charm on the necklace was facing the right way. It went with the theme of her book: fragmented memories. The editor was encouraging both during the meeting and when he ran into her later that day. He said he’d read it on the plane. Someone said she should have just sent him an electronic version so he wouldn’t have to deal with the manuscript while traveling. He had asked for that but Laurel thought it was because he didn’t realize that the proposal was prepared for him specifically. A newbie mistake that God would just have to use for His glory.

Now Laurel waits to see if he asks for a complete manuscript. The proposal is in his hands and out of hers. Then Monday Came getting published? That’s all in God’s Hands.

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This article has been read 298 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Mildred Sheldon05/06/10
Thank you for your story. I enjoyed this very much.
AnneRene' Capp05/07/10
This was not only informative for this newbie, you have an extra appealing flair for putting your author in your MC's shoes. I chuckled at her "showering extra thoroughly", I've been there! :)
Jan Ackerson 05/07/10
I love the feeling of suspense throughout this, and the open ending.

I'd have liked to see more "show" and less "tell"--perhaps some dialog? More indications of your MC's varying emotions?

Loved the little wordplay with the word "proposal".