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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Cyber Communication (email, IM’s, etc) (11/04/10)

By Sara Harricharan


Kelsy threw herself across the narrow dorm-sized bed with a happy shriek.

She bounced, lightly.

It felt good.

Quiet trickled in and she felt the first inklings of relaxation creeping in past her frazzled student brain.

It also felt good.

Mac time!

Kelsy reached under her bed to retrieve her Macbook out from the knapsack stowed beneath. Lying on her stomach, grabbed the laptop and the notebook under it, rolling over and sitting up. Opening the laptop, she waited impatiently to log into her digital world.

The silence of the tiny dorm was welcome in a thousand ways.

Her roommate had for the holiday and gifted a bag of holiday chocolate before reluctantly joining the departure crowd of students in the hallway.

Kelsy had cheerfully waved her off.

Now, she flexed her fingers in anticipation.

The Macbook chimed, alerting her to new emails and friends on her messenger list. With a pillow for a padded backrest, Kelsy positioned the laptop carefully on her lap, and the gifted chocolates to the left of her knee as she settled in. Unwrapping a green-foiled specimen, she popped the shape in her mouth and chewed slowly, enjoying the taste of milk chocolate sliding down her throat.

Updates day 1, updates day 2, updates day 3...penpal reply, coupons for the mall, oh joys, credit card confirmation for—oh, nice, update day 23?

Having skimmed the subject lines in her priority inbox, Kelsy clicked on the top and began to read, one hand already reaching into the chocolate bag for another treat. She nibbled on this next chunk as a smile came to her face.

It’s the first day, Kels! The FIRST! Can you believe it??? I’m very excited!!! I can’t wait to get started. I think I’ll start right at midnight, maybe. I have to work tomorrow, don’t think the ol’ boss would like my sleepyheaded self. Cheers, kiddo!

Kelsy grinned, clicking on the next one.

Well, I’d say it was the second day, but you know that already, don’t ya Kels? I didn’t stay up after all. I wanted to, boy did I want to. Work was lousy, but you know that already too. Got started, a nicer opening than last year, I think it’s a solid five-hundred words. I’m doing myself right proud. Cheers, kiddo!

A giggle threatened to escape.

Kelsy, Kelsy, Kelsy. I think I’m about t’ die. This is only day three. ONLY DAY THREE!!!!! I wouldn’t be screaming like u say, but I cant believe this!!! I really can’t. I’m behind on my word count and it’s only the first week!!! This happened last year, remember? It happened last YEAR!? I can’t let it happen again. No way, no say. Cheers, kiddo.

Kelsy winced. The sheer number of exclamation marks had her editor’s fingers twitching in anticipation. She hurriedly clicked to the next update email.

It’s day nine, Kels. I’m doing fine. Just fine. Really fine. Better than fine, I think. I was busy for a couple of days, but busy is good, right? Guess what? My word count with up, uppity up! I feel so proud. I hope your grades are doing the same. Cheers, kiddo.

Another chunk of chocolate went in her mouth.

DAY TWENTY-THREEEEE!!!! I’m flying, Kel-bels! I really am! Lookit my word count, just take a look at it! I did all of that. All by myself. :) (btw—sure gonna miss u for thanksgiving. Hugs n’ kisses!)

It was too good to leave untouched.

Snatching her Iphone off the nightstand, Kelsy sent a quick text before she hit the speed-dial. The text was warning enough, because the phone didn’t ring more than twice before a warm voice came through from the other end.


“Happy thanksgiving! How’s *NaNo going?”

“You called to ask that?”

“Word count’s lookin’ good!”

“It is, isn’t it?”

“Yep. I’m cheerin’ for ya. Can’t wait to get my hands on it.”

“Your hands or your red pen?”


The laughter was shared and the conversation danced along several other topics before the clock on the nightstand blinked at them, announcing a bedtime hour.

“Yeah. It’s late. No, it was fun. I’m good. I’ll do some homework or something. You—write! Get those words in, okay?” Kelsy smiled. “And Mom? Stop writing in character. I miss your regular emails—and yeah, I’ll be home for Christmas. Hugs n’ kisses!”

*NaNo=National Novel Writing Month—writing 50k words in 30 days

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Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/11/10
I so enjoyed this. It was a fun read. If you are doing NaNo too and writing a challenge then Kudos to you! I really enjoyed your ending; it took me by surprise. Great job, lovable characters.
Rachel Phelps11/16/10
Such fun! I loved this story.
DK Landers11/17/10
A realistic MC and a fun read. Good luck in NaNo!