Anna’s fingers skittered over the keyboard at lightning speed. After staring at he computer screen for over an hour, she still had no clue what her entrance essay was going to be about. No matter how much she wished and willed that her random finger movements would produce a story, the only thing she had typed was the occasional “q” or “z” when her finger hit the key too heavily.
All of Anna’s friends had sent their college applications off already. Even Britney had tossed one in the mail a few days earlier, and her plans after graduation involved going to a lot of movies and modeling not classwork. Anna had been at the computer for days contemplating what she would write. She had always been more comfortable expressing herself through pictures than through words.
It seemed strange to her that she was only applying to art schools, yet she had to write an admissions essay. She had already created a digital portfolio to send along with the applications packets. Anything worth saying in her essay had already been captured in her portfolio.
Anna opened the file and scanned through the images again. She had spent the past year experimenting with every style of art she could come up with. Her entire collection for the year amounted to about one hundred pieces. Five hours of sifting through digital images of each piece had led her to a fairly colorful portfolio.
There was one piece that stood out to Anna each time she looked over the pictures. Unlike the other pieces, it was a monochromatic. The shades and hues of blue conveyed both the temperature and emotions Anna couldn’t shake from her mind.
Too easily the screeching of the tires, the burning smell of rubber, and the impending fear flooded Anna’s brain. The moonlight bouncing off the ice-slicked road flashed between images of white barked trees and swirled into black as the sound of crunching metal filled the air.
Anna touched the wheels on her chair, a constant reminder of that night if she had ever been able to forget. Her sister’s first solo excursion after getting her license had put Anna into the hospital for over six months. Jessica had only suffered a broken arm, but now had to see a therapist to calm the nightmares. Even the medication she was taking didn’t help Jessica sleep well at night.
The accident was over three years ago, but the whole family was still shaken whenever they passed the grove of trees Jessica’s car had skidded into. Anna had painted the picture as a way to cope, but couldn’t bring herself to share it with her family. It was hidden away in the closet.
As Anna’s mind refocused on the computer screen, she was amazed to find she had written nearly a thousand words. With a quick skim of the text, Anna hit print and rolled off to collect her three copies. Sometimes, she decided, the less stress you put on yourself the smoother everything worked.