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Writing Challenge 1: What Keeps You from Writing?

As a procrastinator, a lot keeps me from writing: checking out webcomics, watching tv, the fact I don’t want to look at a computer screen after 10 hours of doing so at work, lack of inspiration, fear (which is silly, but very real), and probably a million other things I could list if I thought about it long enough.

These first few writing challenges are going to focus on what keeps us from writing. We’re going to start off easy and focus on the physical things that keep us from writing.

Write a scene of the last activity that won out over writing. Maybe it was work, or watching tv, maybe you spent the whole time thinking about how you should be writing. Whatever it was, I recommend you write in the same style you usually write, or aspire to write in.

In yesterday’s post, I talked about the importance of having a goal. That goal will likely have a form. If you want to write a fiction novel, write the scene as fiction, with a character that is you or represents you. You can even fit the challenge to sci-fi, romance, or whatever genre you specialize in. If you write poetry, write a poem. If your goal is to publish a memoir, the post can almost be a diary entry, or in the tone you’d tell a story about yourself.

If you’re still figuring out what your writing goal is, just play with it. Take the prompt in whatever direction you want. I’ll post my response to this challenge tomorrow. Feel free to share your response in the comments below or post it on your own blog and put the link in the comments.

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Kickstarted

So, the anthology group I am a part of is getting everything together, and we’re releasing our collection of Fairy-tale/mythos inspired stories in October! We’re putting together a kickstarter for the project, which will be live on July 1st! I’m not going to nag you all about it too much, but it’d be cool if you checked it out! There will be information about all the authors and their stories on the kickstarter page.

Anyway, that combined with the fact that I’m reading a book called “the tipping point” are what inspired this next little snippet. The tipping point is all about the little things that cause epidemics, whether they be diseases, or social epidemics like fashion trends and tv shows. I realized that the terms “kickstarter” and “tipping point” have similar meanings. So here is what popped into my head on the drive to work this morning.

Janie slid up from home base, rushed back around third, ducked under the short stop and rounded second. She barely made it to first as the pitcher caught the ball from second base and then she sprinted with all her might to home plate, where the bat flew into her hands and she got ready to miss the ball three times like she always had before. but first, something happened.

The catcher called her a pathetic loser.

Janie relived that first home run backward, forward and sideways until she went to sleep that night. Then she dreamed about the game, only this time it happened in a castle surrounded by clouds.

 

Overflow

“Why me!?!” the thin blonde woman lamented to the sky. “WHY?”

“Why not you?”

Jessica jumped and turned to look around. A few paces away, a man with hair the color of coffee stood, walking toward her.

“What?” Jessica sneered defensively. “you don’t even know what I’m talking about. I don’t deserve what is happening to me.”

“And someone else does?” Read the rest of this entry

Turtle in a Box

scritch-scratch.

Whyyyyyyyyyy?!

Why would you put me back in this tiny box? And no, no I absolutely refuse! You are not taking me back to that blue motorous monster. That thing makes me nauseous! It feels like the world is flying by, and I’m not even moving!

Last time I was in this box I ended up in an entirely new home. I just got used to it! The curly haired boy is odd, but very entertaining. I don’t want to leave.

Let me out!

It’s dark in here. I want my mini-sun back.

….

I’ve been in here forever!

Why do you keep peeking at me? Just take me out? Yikes! Why does the world keep stopping and starting so much?

Oh yes. We stopped moving. Finally.

I’ll get to go back to my dirt!

And I sit…. and I sit…

Oh no. She’s going to pick me up.

Think of the dirt, think of the dirt.

Home! Light! Warmth!

I want another worm. I deserve it after that ordeal.

There’s some furry monster by the girl and a new human. They had better not let it near me. It looks… slobbery.

Oh good. they’re all gone.

I don’t mind the girl though. She gets along with the curly-haired boy.

I miss him.

(Don’t worry, Terra will get to go back to Jordan’s after we get back from our trip. Unfortunately, she will have to endure another car ride.)

Late

Yes I’m late; I’m very late. but it’s not important, nor a date. This running behind situation I’m in will have no greater bearing on my life or well-being than if I was early, which is usually the case.

If I had left when I planned, right now I’d be sitting, staring at my phone, trying not to nap, wondering if it was too early to go inside.

But as it is, I will walk in; a few people will ask why I’m late; most won’t notice.

And life will go on. As I look back on this day, I will not remember I was late, just like I would not remember if I was early or on time.

So I’m just going to breathe the stress out and keep driving.

Because really, that’s all I can do.

Experiment

A while ago, due to some outings and random conversations, a group of friends and I started referring to going out, drinking, dancing, and having a good time as “networking”. I decided to write a piece about this, but format it as a classroom worksheet, which the character was using as a diary of sorts rather than completing the assignment. Below are the results. I haven’t looked at it for a while, and think I want to expand on it, either as is, or incorporating it into a larger work. Let me know what you think and if you have any other suggestions for questions/answers that could be on the worksheet. Read the rest of this entry

If I had to Be Caught

fish

A punny fellow English major friend and I almost named this one “stream of conciousness.” But the title as it is is perfect, and though I’ve thought of making many changes after readers misunderstood and just failed to “get” this piece, it says exactly what I want it to, and I can’t really imagine any changes without compromising the piece.

Without further rambling…

It is a gorgeous day. I swim freely in my lovely, fast-paced stream, loving life. For a while, I was afraid that I would regret leaving the cave-pond where I grew up, but I longed to escape. I needed change. So I left, and I am loving my life in this action-packed river. But don’t be fooled. Though I have been sheltered, I am not ignorant of the ways of this world. I know the dangers that lurk around every corner, waiting to catch me unawares.

So of course, your bait does not fool me. Yes, that plump worm is tempting, floating there, just begging to be snatched up, but I know that hiding beneath that fleshy mass is a wiry hook- a hook that has caught many fish already, and will catch many more. I refuse to be one of those fish. Read the rest of this entry

Particles

Floating, flying, dancing through the air as we usually do, we orbit our moon. We shoot out to the limits of gravity’s reach and squeal with excitement as we get pulled back into her cool embrace. We do this constantly, always moving. Moving is how we obtain our knowledge. Sounds and actions, thoughts and colors from all over the universe bounce by at lightning speed. If we move quickly, we can see them.

This is how we learned that the humans are coming. Read the rest of this entry

Lonely Stars

I have an idea for a piece about The Wishing Star for an anthology project I am involved in. Below is some stuff I wrote to get in the mindset to write the piece. It won’t be in the actual story, but it kind of sets the tone for what I want to write, so I thought I’d share it here. Enjoy!

As long as there have been cities where human beings congregate to avoid the loneliness of nature, there have been people who long to escape the lights of those cities – to get away from the loneliness of shared company. The act of observing the stars has brought peace to peoples’ hearts for centuries. When looking at the vastness of the night sky, we realize that this universe is huge; we realize that we are not alone. Then we can go back to the very people whom we were escaping with a sense of gratitude for their presence in our lives.

It may seem odd that the solitary act of stargazing can dissipate loneliness, but it is true. Some speculate that it is because it gives us the opportunity to spend time with ourselves. When we feel lonely in a crowd of people, it is because we have lost touch with ourselves and therefore cannot connect with anyone else. Getting away from our daily routine can help this. The night sky is like a blank canvas for our thoughts. Our worries and concerns become lines connecting the stars and planets together. Once this is done, they are no longer inside us, and we are left with just ourselves, able to rejoin the general population. Read the rest of this entry