First Place: “Spoken Word Virgin”

Posted on: September 6, 2015
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By Claire Wilson
 
[Fiction, Based on a True Story]
 
 
 
 
 
My palms were damp as approached the podium. I couldn’t stop my knees from knocking together.
 
 
My sweaty hands made the ink run on the paper I clutched so hard it was at risk of tearing. I looked out at the audience and tried to ignore the snide looks I got. With my dyed hair and tattoos, I didn’t fit in with these people.
 
 
I opened my mouth to speak but only a squeak emerged.
 
 
I cleared my throat and tried again, raising my voice slightly to be heard at the back of the room.
 
 
The more words I uttered, the more my confidence grew.
 
 
And then I heard it.
 
 
Applause.
 
 
I found my way to my seat quicker than I exited it. Had it only been ten minutes ago?
 
 
I sat down and listened to another person speaking, and wondered how long I had to wait before I could go back up again.
 
 
 

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