Well, what were you doing with your life at 18?   Back then, trying not to die during my first year of college pretty sums up that year of my life.  Clearly, becoming a successful author was last on my list.  And, probably, everyone else’s.

Anyways, if you need inspiration to finally start doing the thing you love, let this be it.

Fairfield Daily Voice reports that 18-year-old Mary Quinn just published her first novel.  Yes.  Novel.  Bonafide published author.  Seriously, that’s majorly cool.

Her book?  It’s called “Thorn in My Side” and here’s the gist:

“Senior year is hard enough. Add in demons, a sleeping curse, and an unwanted prince completely determined to marry you and what do you get? Chaos.”

Sounds pretty neat to me!  Just secured my copy on Amazon.

Anyways, with me closing in on 30, I can proudly say I’ve written approximately 6 chapters of a book that I’ve picked at… since I was 16.   So, Quinn and I have this in common: we both started taking writing seriously when we were 16.

Yeah, she participated in National Novel Writing Month during her Sophomore year, too.  Basically, people all over the world strive to hit 50,000 words during the month of November.  If you hit 50k, you win.  That’s basically the entire point of having a successful NaNoWriMo.

If you need some math, you have to write nearly 2,000 words a day to reach that goal.   Or just have a very productive weekend and catch up all in one day.  That works, too.

So, if you need a reason to start writing again, November might be an excellent time to get back on the horse.

Quinn said NaNo turned out to be a win-win for her:

“I loved having an excuse to put everything aside to just write. I also liked the excuse of being able to tell people I was busy writing because I rarely get to write for fun anymore.”

She admits that she spent some nights up at 2am to finish writing down her ideas.  Dedication, man.  She has it.

Obviously, Quinn hit that 50k, as did I back in 2005.  Like, not to brag.  It’s a pretty big deal.

But, while I hemmed and hawed over my book for years on end and, after various rewrites, became distracted by college and my career – Quinn hit the ground running.

She spent the next year editing and polishing her manuscript and started shopping it to publishers.

While agonizing over her midterms, she sent a copy to Fire and Ice on a whim.  And, the rest was history!  The agency accepted her book during her junior year and just published it just in time for her graduation.

So, what’s next?  Well, she’s shipping up to Massachusetts for college next year.   Will more books be in her future?  Probably.  And I can’t wait to read them.

Also, Mary Quinn appeared on First Thing Fairfield County with Ken Tuccio this morning.  Check out her interview and hear her crazy successful story for yourself.


So, what was the greatest thing you accomplished when you were 18? Does it even come close to Mary Quinn’s achievement?

All I know is, I’m heading back to my tiny Acer computer and cracking it open for the first time in a long while tonight.   Cuz I’m pretty inspired to finish a story that’s been nagging me for well-over a decade.

What do you think? Comment below