My newly-acquired , zombie-induced status was the product of many a sleepless night , burning the midnight oil .
Sleep had become my opponent , my nemesis , the bane of my existence ; that elusive , unattainable , far-away ideal that I both craved and detested .
I walked around with blood-shot eyes that felt gritty , as if invaded by countless sand granules which could be acutely felt but were non-existent .
Sleep taunted me and beckoned me … tried to entwine me in its warm embrace .
But I had a deadline to meet !
The competition entry had to be submitted .
Only three hours remained to hand in my story .