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on the power of showing up

note: I wrote this post in April of 2019 (pre-COVID). It's been sitting in my drafts for quite a while, but I think it's time for it to see the light of day. It's been helpful for me to reread over the past few months, especially as I continue to try to make an effort to write, and I hope it can be helpful to you, too. i got an invite to a writers' group a few months ago, and i had never felt like more of a fraud in my life. it had been months, if not years, since i'd felt like a writer. the proverbial well of words in my heart had dried up, it seemed, and i wasn't sure if it was ever coming back. i agreed to go out of a sense of helplessness—i'd identified as a writer ever since i could remember. if i'm not a writer, who am i?  i told myself that it was important to show up and act like a writer even when i didn't feel like one, because even though i hadn't been writing, i reassured myself, i still was a writer. but sometimes the words f

A Novel Idea: One More Wish

I'm sliding in just under the wire to participate in this week's ANI prompt, which is as follows!

Write something that begins with a character throwing a coin into a fountain.

When I was little, my mom always insisted on throwing a coin into every fountain we passed. Evyn, we should make a wish!, she'd say. Whether it was superstition or just a habit I never figured out, but as soon as I see the fountain on my college campus, I think of her. I haven't spoken to her in a few months. She's going to counseling, trying to get better.

So am I.

I can hear the water rushing as I get closer, the water sparkling in the sunlight. I stop a few feet away and dig through my purse, looking for spare change. I haven't seen Mom in months, but I feel like she's here, insisting that we throw a coin into this fountain, that we make a wish.

My finger brushes across something cold and metal in the bottle of my purse. A dingy copper penny. I edge my way closer to the fountain, sitting down on the edge. On the bottom of the fountain, distorted by water, are dozens of coins, gleaming like stars. All wishes. I wonder if people got their wishes or if their coins just sank to the bottom. I wonder if I'll get mine.

Rubbing my thumb over the penny, I close my eyes and take a breath, just like Mom and I always used to. I think about what I want to wish for. When I was little, it was for things like a pony or for more books to read. Now, it seems like there are bigger things vying for my attention. Things like passing my midterm, missing my friends back home, and wanting my mom to be okay, even after all the pain we've gone through together. I want both of us to be okay, to be happy, to be whole.

A couple of students walk past me, laughing, which brings me back to the moment. I close my eyes again. Take a deep breath. I drop the penny into the bottom. And I make my wish. 

(I kind of cheated because this ends with someone throwing a coin into a fountain, but oh well.)

Come back tomorrow for another installment of A Novel Idea! It's AUGUST NOW, OH MY GOSH. How's your year going?


  1. This was touching, despite it being such a small piece of writing. It makes me want to know more about what happened, so maybe you didn't "cheat" because maybe this is the beginning of something longer... :)

  2. I love this, your writing is beautiful.


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