something new

So, I am excited.  Really excited.  Not just the sort of excited you get when you find a dollar bill on the curb or when you remember you’ve got an ice cold pop in the fridge.  I’m talking about a deep, butterfly inducing, grin-inspiring excitement (not that I haven’t smiled about finding a cold pop in the fridge).   No, this is for real.

I have been brainstorming for some time about how I could have some good, consistent content on this blog as I’m working on my stories. And today, purely by accident, I came up with an idea.  Well, truth be told, I didn’t.  It wasn’t even close to my idea.  It was someone in my online writing group.  You can check out his writing blog here.  Anyway, he mentioned something about a site that does flash fiction challenges every Friday.

For those of you who don’t know, flash fiction is a term which typically refers to a very short story, typically in the 100-1000 word range.  Each week this guy puts up a flash fiction writing challenge.  For example, two weeks ago he challenged everyone to write a 500 word story with no ending.  Everyone posts their own stories on their blogs and then links to them in the comments of his website (where the challenge originated).  Then, the following week the challenge was to look through the comments, read a few of the stories posted by other people, and then continue with that story (started by someone else) and add a 500 word middle.  This week, the challenge is to take the thousand word story (now written by two different people) and finish it in 500 words or so.  Fun, right?  Each week the challenge is different.

“Self,” I said, “this is perfect.”

I’ve already skimmed several stories and found one that I think I’m going to work on.  I need to have my ending posted by this Friday.

This was exactly what I was looking for.  I’m hoping it will give me a good jump start to getting some content written.  The little flash challenges will be a great way to start writing about various things.  It will also serve a couple purposes.  First, it will force me to post content on this blog, something I’ve been woefully inadequate about of late.  Second, it will allow me to start rubbing shoulders with other writers.  I’ll get to see their different blogs and writing styles.  They’ll get to see mine.  Maybe I’ll even make a friend or two.

But, either way, I’ll be writing.  And that’s what it’s all about.

Also, I set a goal tonight to enter a submission in the current L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future contest.  It’s a quarterly contest in which the winners are selected, paid, and their stories are published in a quarterly anthology.  I entered once before, *cough.  The rules are that if you are selected you can’t enter again.  Let’s just say I can still enter.  🙂

Anyway, this goal is a bit ambitious for me because the submission period ends on 9/30 (10 days from now).  That means I’ve got to get writing, and writing fast.  The stories can’t be longer than 17,000 words or so.  Time is too short to get a story polished enough to stand any legitimate chance of selection.  But, I’m going to submit anyway because it’s time I started writing.  I’m going to do whatever it takes to make that happen.  As I said in my previous post, I’m tired of wanting to be a writer but not writing.  Change is coming…


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