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Joseph Steinagel
The Twenty-Third Hour
A few college friends, one of which is himself a novel novelist, met up one evening as per their usual every-other month custom. They talked with each other for a time but all the while there was an elephant in the room. The novelist, Lucas, had just written and published a novella in under a month and all eyes and ears, for the most part, were caught up in his success. The English major of the group, Avery, however, was not at all impressed as she addressed the fact that Agatha Christie, under the pen name of Mary Westmacott, had written an entire romance novel in the span of a single weekend. Suffice to say, enlarged egos quickly took over and a wager was subsequently framed. The young author from the bunch bet that he could in fact write the first draft to a full-length novel in a single day, and this is where the story begins. Pride was on the line, and free food was too.