Last summer I finally kept my promise & went over to my parents' house to start cleaning out my childhood bedroom. Unlike most of my friends, my parents have not moved, nor have they turned my old bedroom into a gym/office/crafting room. It's pretty much exactly the way I left it when I moved out.
Going through boxes, I came across my 5th grade entry into the Young Author's contest. I LOVE that I found this, and I also love the irony that I am now co-director of the Young Author's contest at my school. Full circle, people, full circle.
"Emerald" is a fantasy story in which the main character falls asleep and enters a magical world in order to find and save her missing father. The number of similarities to my current MG manuscript actually kind of weird me out. In my room-cleaning endeavor I also came across several other stories from as young as 2nd grade with similar themes ("My Trip to Cowzoomy,"and "Bubble Land.") I think it's really cool that the type of story I loved writing as a child--fantasy/sci-fi set in different worlds--is still the type of story I love writing as an adult.
However, my favorite part of this find is my "About the Author" page at the end of the story:
In case you can't read my stellar cursive: "Nicole Benoit was born at Evanston Hospital on August 27, 1980. She has a dad, a mom, and a brother. She has a dog named Rowdy, and two goldfish named Polky and Gumby. She is ten and will be turning eleven this summer. Other stories recently written by Nicole are The Search for the Devil's Head, Christmas Magic, The Selfish Peacock, and Pumpernickle. She attends Hubbard Woods School and is in the 5th grade."
I think when I get published, this should be my "About the Author," no?
Anyway, I think finding my old writing at this time in my life is pretty much the definition of serendipity...it's meant to be. Look for my books "The Search for the Devil's Head" and "The Selfish Peacock" at a bookstore near you.