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by Shelby Du Plessis about a month ago in success
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Initial Impact; an Introduction

My first published work {Psychosis} is so captivating that its ratings soared to the top 11,000 books out of millions available on Amazon in under a fortnight after being unranked for nearly 7 months; as well as appearing in the top 100 best sellers lists of two separate categories simultaneously, twice. {Erotic Thrillers; Erotic Mysteries}

Am I full of myself?


Let me elaborate. My brother cannot read music, yet has the mark of a musical genius -- perfect pitch. And, although I'm not musically inclined, my literacy skills alone are completely unique and often unparalleled. As a visual artist with a nearly-effortless affinity for writing, it's more than just telling stories and using some sort of spellchecker or hiring an editing team. No. . . for you see, I am the editing team. I meticulously structure my stories into beautiful works of art, and each one is explicitly one-of-a-kind.

Imagine my surprise at discovering that my ability to successfully write and edit in every major category was not just a rarity, but by many, considered non-existent. My rough drafts surpass most manuscripts by themselves. In the third grade, I won a school-wide essay competition by accident.

Realistically, at some point, calling myself anything less than a prodigy was just a blatant lie.

Every keystroke is deliberate and nothing is ever quite as it seems.

I lead an eventful life filled with ironic tragedies and questionable coincidences; all of which continue to guide me down a seemingly fated path to impacting the world's approach to mental healthcare. As an author, editor, artist, mother, w i f e (?), daughter, full-time psychology student, and an all-around jack-of-all-trades – I refuse to rest until I have accomplished what I'm destined to.

The desire to prove myself comes from somewhere that I can't describe. There was no motivational speech or accidentally adopted hobby to lead me to greatness. I always knew, even in my earliest memories of my childhood, that something about me was off. Just as with my brother. . . However, he did not pursue music. Up until recently, neither of us wanted to go after something bigger than ourselves because of this innate unspoken terror that only we could understand between the two of us - and it was that we knew what we had would take us to unimaginable heights.

The feeling of knowing what your future holds, based on a sensation that you have in every molecule of your existence, is crippling. My life has always seemed like an increasingly unconvincing backroom illusion. I took solace in the simplicity of being poor, we both did. I wanted to enjoy the calm, the mundane, the peace, the predictable turmoil, and the familiar struggle of poverty. Because I knew when I would eventually put something out into the world, my simple life would unravel.

I wasn't ready to carry that weight.

I wasn't ready to work nonstop.

To miss my parents.

To miss my kids.

My husband.

My bed.


But we are never truly ready for anything, and the stardust that manifested into the shit show that I am didn't care that I wasn't prepared.

On September 9th, 2021, I sat down to write at my parent's dining room table and I didn't stop. I doubt I could have if I wanted to. With more than 40,000 words, 6 total hours of sleep, 303 pages, 9 hours of editing, and not the first cigarette break – I submitted my manuscript to Amazon's publishing platform just before midnight on September 13th, 2021.

Psychosis only took 4 days to complete.

7 months later, on April 9, 2022 {my h u s b a n d (?)'s birthday}, a set of events occurred that caused my world to collapse and I hit my lowest. 5 days later, on April 14th, another set of life-altering events took place. Just before midnight while on the phone discussing my thesis with an old friend, I spoke to my dad in passing in our kitchen and learned that in essence, he was dying. Disoriented and stunned by the news, I walked outside and found a chair in which to sit and process. Still, on the phone, I looked up at the stars and tears flooded my eyes only to drip down the cheeks of a straight face. A thin strand gleaming in the street lamp caught my eye and I leaped from my chair.

As a joke when I was a child, my dad had thrown a leaf in my mane of hair and he then panicked, yelling "Spider!" And I developed crippling arachnophobia as a result. So by seeing the web above me, I moved so fast I might as well have teleported. My friend insisted sitting beneath a web was a sign of good luck. After saying goodbye a moment later, I hung up, and then my notifications from various apps loaded on my phone. G-Eazy released a new song titled "Angel" just after midnight. He is my favorite musician, and I was too upset and distracted to listen. I made my way to visit a different friend to clear my head and we discussed my book being on sale on Kindle. He went to the site and congratulated me on its rankings, which I had seen were in the multi-millions a week before. Confused, I checked the site.

On Friday, April 15, 2022, at 2:20 AM, my first self–written/edited/published work was ranked 213,094; in the top 2% of all books available through one of the largest companies in the world.

I called my mom. She praised me, which was previously thought to be out of the realm of possibility. An hour later once I'd gotten home, I placed my phone on charge, checked on my kids, and then walked outside. I felt the weight of my entire family's future balance itself upon my shoulders and I remained frozen for just shy of 3 hours while I attempted to comprehend that my fate was sealed and I was at the mercy of quantum physics.

Later that day, my dad and I talked about the web. He informed me that it is "nature's dream catcher". A while after that, I listened to Gerald's song and sobbed, for it was a tribute to his late mother, on her birthday no less.

My dad is dying, and cannot continue working to provide for our family any longer. My mom can't do it on her own, nor should she be expected to. If circumstances weren't completely erratic and unpredictable, if everything worked favorably, it still wouldn't be enough in the end to change the trajectory of our lives.

The torch was forced into my hands and at the fork in the road I had to choose between permanently missing my family, and permanently losing my family. I had to be decisive and accept that the skill set I was born with serves a purpose.

The Universe called me to stand, so here I am.


About the author

Shelby Du Plessis

My name is Shelby Du Plessis. I am a self-made author, born and bred on the Emerald Coast in the not-so-small town of Foley, AL. . . and I have a gift for writing.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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