10 Reasons You Should Totally Try a Writing Challenge

writing challenge why 10Ah, writing challenges. They’re about a lot nowadays, and some people (like me!) even invent their own. You might have heard of them before, but not thought much about them.

Some writing challenges involve you writing a short story or poem everyday. Some, like NaNoWriMo, encourage you to write a novel. Some are just word prompts for every day and some are perhaps weekly or monthly.

Remember not to get writing challenges confused with goals: goals are personal things you set (like finishing your novel at the end of the month). A challenge often involves telling other people about it and sometimes joining in a group project. Anyway. Let’s get on with the list, shall we?

  1. It gets you writing! Obviously, this is a great reason.
  2. You can sometimes be a part of a great community, like the NaNoWriMo community! This generally means making great online friends. Whoop!
  3. It’s good if you’re just coming back into writing or have suffered a knock of confidence. It’ll get you going again and hopefully you can get some encouraging feedback.
  4. You can try out different genres! Perhaps set yourself a writing challenge of writing a short story with a different genre every week?
  5. You have something to show for it at the end of it. Whoop, whoop! Oh, and bragging rights. Obviously.
  6. You might improve on your writing skills by the end of the whole thing. Wouldn’t that be super? Look at your first and last piece of work once you’re done, and see how far you’ve come!
  7. It’s fairly easy to get your friends involved, especially if you guys can sit in a café together and talk about your writing woes. (However, if they don’t have the same mind-set as you to keep going through the challenge, don’t be put off and carry on! The likelihood is they’ll still listen to you, even if they don’t quite understand what you’re going through.)
  8. If you’re struggling with getting some writing done, you can set yourself a little challenge and get to it, hopefully getting you into a routine which means you can write every day after the challenge is over. So, writing challenges can often help you in the future.
  9. If you’re applying for a job or need a portfolio, you have loads of material, and if you do a short story writing challenge, you often have loads of different and diverse material to show off what you can do, which is exactly what they’re looking for!
  10. Finally? It’s fun. Just plain fun. If you choose a short story challenge too, it’s often not that much out of you’re day that you’re taking and hey, if one sucks, hopefully the next will be better!

Keep trying with writing guys! One word in front of the other.

PS If you want to have a go at a writing challenge, you can try my 23 Day Writing Challenge right here!

23 Day Writing Challenge!

23 day writing challengeToday, I invented a 23 day writing challenge, and I’m going to strive to complete it! (Why 23 days, you ask? Well, that means I’ll finish on the 18th December, when I leave college for the holidays, so I might be able to pump out a Christmas short before the big day, and also I probably won’t get much done in the holidays because I’ll be super busy!)

Continue reading “23 Day Writing Challenge!”

Three Days, Three Quotes: Tag Challenge [Day 1]

So the great and glorious Ellen from eveningreads tagged me to do this challenge, thank you! Ok so these are the rules:

Rules
1. Thank the person who nominated you.
2. Post a quote for 3 consecutive days (1 quote for each day). (I’m assuming these are from books!)
3. Nominate three new bloggers each day (oh this should be fun, if I can remember anyone XD)

My first quote comes from a book I finished last week (I think?) called The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani:

If you truly love someone, when he is cut, you bleed.

I’m sorry, being a not-very-good-reader-person I lost the page number this was on…. but it’s a lovely quote anyway, isn’t it?

For my first three bloggers, I am tagging…

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s installment! ;D

Drabbles

Okay, so let me begin by saying the title is actually a thing. And it’s a thing you can do easily!

A drabble is a 100 word story. Some people say it has to be exactly 100 words, and some people say it’s just anything exactly or below 100. The former group of people say that anything below 100 words is a ficlet or a snippet (as well as other words). But to be honest, in my opinion, it doesn’t really matter.

Anyway. Drabbles were started as short stories but many fanfiction writers have taken them on. Challenges have been created that you can find quickly online, that you can easily take part in.

Why should you write drabbles? Well, whilst they can take a long time if you do them ‘right’, you can do them pretty quickly as well. Why not knock one up right now, during the ad break of the TV show you’re watching, or once you finish that chapter of your book ? Even jot one down when you’re boiling the kettle for a nice cuppa.

And they can be super fun! 😀 Try a fanfiction, or just a snippet of one of the moments your character lives through.

So I propose a challenge. Write a drabble and post it in the comments!

Good luck & have fun! 

The First One {Short Story}

The First One

TW: Drugs, murder.
Word count: 994

~

The tea was steadily getting colder, but still remained untouched. The marshmallow had been mutilated to the point that it probably wasn’t a marshmallow any more, and parts of it lay scattered on the saucer.

Fingertips tapped on the table top. Hard, blue eyes stared, watching various people go about their daily business outside.

Inside the coffee shop, there was a general buzz of content as the first flakes of snow fell.

A young man passed her by and sat opposite a pretty woman. He laughed and reached over to hold her hand. The woman’s eyes flitted to hers, and the girl stared, almost unseeingly, back at her. Shifting uncomfortably, the woman dropped her gaze.

The bell above the door rang as it was opened by a boy, no older than 16. He kicked grit from his boots whilst his friends passed him. They were jostling and laughing, but that wasn’t what made the girl smile.

Pushing tousled, brown hair away from his face, the boy’s gaze met hers. It dropped a split second later, and a hint of red appeared over his cheeks. Brown, intelligent eyes were enhanced by bright, white teeth, and he followed his friends to get drinks. With a skip in her heart as the handsome one looked at her again, the girl watched as the group sat opposite her table.

The book that had been used as a prop was ignored, and the girl put her full attention on the boy opposite. He sat, slouching but still managing to look interested in what the others were saying. He took small sips from his hot chocolate, pushing the hair from his face every so often.

Now and then, he would glance up at her, and she would pretend to be watching someone else, or would stare down at her book, feeling when he looked away.

Eventually, the three boys stood. The brown haired one turned her way one more time and smiled, before following his friends out of the door, which clanged shut behind them.

The girl stood. Leaving her untouched tea behind, she picked up a heavy duffel bag and opened the door, silent save for a light ringing of the bell.

For once, her tiny frame worked to her advantage. She followed the boys in a practised manner, waiting outside whilst they went into shops, always pretending to be engrossed in something else, making sure they didn’t notice her too much.

Long, loose hair flowed down her back like a white waterfall. Rubber soled boots made no sound on the concrete. Her leather jacket kept the rain off when a few drops decided to fall.

Finally, the boys split up. The girl followed the handsome one as he went this way and that, down the small alleys that no one else went down in the city. She watched carefully as he bought something from a dodgy looking guy, and, once again, waited outside as he disappeared into a club for an hour.

It was nearly 2AM by the time she caught him alone. He seemed sober and his eyes were clear, although she suspected he was under the influence of something or other.

What’s a pretty girl like you doing out so early?” he asked, stumbling upon her leaning against the wall just outside. She shrugged and batted her eyelids daintily.

Waiting for a handsome guy like you to come along, I suppose,” she twittered falsely. The boy smiled, almost warily, and she thought she saw a hint of recognition in his eyes.

Didn’t I see you earlier? In Mrs J’s?” he asked. The girl uttered a high, fake laugh.

Oh, perhaps. Weren’t you the handsome one that came through the door?” She stroked his arm, and the boy looked more at ease.

Perhaps,” he smiled. “Can I walk you home, then?”

The girl felt a rush through her veins. “Oh, yes please. It’s a little scary out here at night, what with all those strange men around.”

The boy nodded, and she reached down to pick up her duffel bag. “Oh here,” he said, “let me carry that for you.” She shrugged, and passed it to him; he bent momentarily over the unexpected weight, before straightening, and passing it to his right hand, so he could walk with his left to her. “Blimey, what have you got in here?”

Oh, just some…books,” she said, saying the first thing that came to her mind. “Shall we go, then?”

Casually, the girl walked off, and the boy hesitated for a moment before following her sashaying hips.

Street after street passed them by as the boy tried to make small talk. The girl answered in short sentences, still trying to keep the pretty tone to her voice. A small alley came up on her right, and she halted.

Oh, I know this place! This is a short cut,” she lied, holding out her hand for his. He took it without thinking, and she tugged him down the gloomy passage.

They met no one. Heard nothing. It seemed as if they were in their own little bubble. Perfect, the girl thought, a sly smile on her face.

So, where does this lead to?” the boy asked, peering back over his shoulders as the darkness engulfed them, taking them away from the comforting, orange street lights.

Somewhere special,” she replied vaguely.

When she felt sure that no one would see nor hear them, she pulled the boy towards her before pushing him against the wall. He dropped the duffel bag in shock, and they both heard the clanging of metal.

Frozen, the boy stayed tight against the wall. She reached down and slowly unzipped the bag. Drawing a knife from its depths, she held it up, so it glinted in the slither of moonlight that came from between the buildings.

This was it.

The first one.

The first boy she would ever kill. 

~

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