Monday, January 24, 2011

Short story contests and Blogging challenges

Over the weekend I participated in the 24 hour short story contest at I received the prompt at 1:00 Eastern time on Saturday, and had to have the story e-mailed to the editor by 1:00 on Sunday.

I was watching an Ohio State basketball game (Go Bucks!!) that started at noon on Saturday, and it was fun to keep checking the clock and waiting for 1:00 to get here, as I was really anxious to see the prompt. It did arrive in my e-mail at 1:00 on the dot, and I was almost nervous opening it. I'm not sure why I was nervous, as the worst that could happen was I wouldn't be able to think of anything to write, but since I've never done anything like this before I felt a bit on edge.

I was excited as soon as I read the e-mail though, as I thought it was a really interesting prompt for a story. The prompt was about a pajama-clad woman crying and trudging through deep snow, and hearing a train whistle. The story had to touch on this topic in some way, and couldn't be more than 875 words.

I finished watching the basketball game and started thinking of ideas, then sat down with my laptop to write. The prompt seemed very dark to me, and I wanted to write a dark tale to go along with it. It was fun to try and imagine who this woman was and why she was out in the snow wearing only pajamas, and to determine the significance of the train whistle.

For better or worse, I finished the story later that night and e-mailed it back to the editor on Sunday morning. I was happy with my finished product, and regardless of whether I win anything, it was a great experience to participate in the contest. I'm looking forward to signing up for the next contest in the spring.

On a different note, I also signed up for a blogging challenge last Friday. I learned of the 2011 S.H.I.N.E Blogging Challenge at the WritingSpirit blog, and was excited to sign up for it. I was a bit late as the challenge started on New Year's Day, but I figured I could still participate for the remainder of the challenge's 111 day time period.

One fun thing about this challenge to me is participants are encouraged to use the #SHINEonline hashtag on Twitter, so I thought this could be a great way to interact with other bloggers. I'm still getting acclimated to Twitter, so this seemed like a great opportunity to get more comfortable with it.

I signed up for 3 blog posts a week with the challenge, so I'm looking forward to working towards that, starting with this week. Of course, I didn't do too well with NaBloPoMo, but 3 posts a week seems a lot more manageable.

Anyway, it was a great weekend for writing, (and for my sports teams!) and I'm looking forward to continuing that momentum through the week ahead.


  1. Sure sounds like you're involved in some great challenges! The prompt this past weekend is very intriguing. I'm glad it was a postive experience for you. Hats off to you in your continued pursuit of challenges and other writing opportunities!

  2. Love the challenges that you are doing. I've over extended myself and need to get back on track. Good Luck!

  3. Hi Kim! Thanks! I know it's very easy to get over extended, best of luck to you getting back on track. I really enjoy your blog! :)

  4. Hi, I'm dropping in from Java's blog. Nice to meet you *waves*. I really enjoyed your blog and am your newest follower.

  5. Wow that sure fun! That must be fun to share your creativity!

    I am also on the list of 400 mile fitness challenge 2011 and follow you with GFC would appreciatge a follow back if you don't mind

  6. Hi Kittie and Denise! Thanks for stopping by! I am looking forward to following your blogs. Great to meet you both!


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