I had a teacher who used to say of our messy short stories, “It’s never done until it’s in print.” Blogging wasn’t a thing back then so “in print” meant an editor had to say, “Hey! Let’s print this!” Her message? Keep tinkering, thinking, cutting and rearranging until it’s right.
Good writing habits help make it right. Read your draft aloud. Print it out and read it on paper; you’ll always see something you missed on that glowing screen. Walk away from it for a day or an hour or ten minutes and then read it with a fresh eye. Make yourself say, aloud, in one sentence, what it’s about. Identify the ”so what.” If you can’t identify the so what, maybe what you’ve written is a snippet, a thought, a rant. Maybe it’s not a story. Start over and write a story. And cut ruthlessly. Cut a third of your piece and see if it reads better, if it’s tighter and more exciting and more fun to read. Aim for a 500-word post and you’ll look all slender and cool next to the chunkier, 1,000 word missives. Make it great before it’s done, because we can’t wait to read it.
What you need for the challenge grid: a nonfiction yeah write post that is not linked up anywhere else and the willingness to read up to forty-nine other non-double-linked yeah write posts. (Feel like writing some fiction this week? Head over to the speakeasy.) You need some time to read or re-read our submission guidelines and FAQ. And some more time to come back and vote fairly for a crowd favorite on Thursday. Virgins, welcome! We’re glad to have you.
The best posts with the most compelling so whats will be moved by the yeah write editors onto the invitational grid, from which a jury prize will be selected. Please consult this checklist for hints about what makes, or doesn’t make, an invitational-worthy post. Invitational grid posts also remain on the challenge grid. The invitational won’t be made public until popular voting opens on Thursday.
Happy birthday, Flood G!
Can we take a few minutes out of perfecting our grid submissions to wish yeah write submissions editor Flood G a very happy yeah write birthday?
Happy birthday, Flood!
In honor of your infamous love letters showing everyone to their “so what” and your level-headed support and late-night email exchanges keeping yeah write afloat, we’ve given you your very own yeah write birthday* badge to be proudly displayed on all participating blogs this week.
May this day be filled with quietly obedient children, a loving husband and a vacation from all your problems. We love you and probably owe you an email about something important.
Odds, ends, reminders
- Your post can be dated no earlier than Feb 24th, the day the yeah write #98 badges were officially posted
- The grid is open from Tuesday at 12:01 a.m. to Wednesday at 11:59 p.m.
- It is limited to 50 bloggers
- Voting will take place all day Thursday from midnight to Friday at midnight
- The winners’ post will be published at noon on Friday
- Our new weekend moonshine grid will open Friday at 6 p.m. and close Monday by 12:01 a.m.
- No self-promotional posts are allowed on the yeah write grid, including those containing links to other blog events and Internet contests
- Combining your yeah write post with other blog events meant to maximize your exposure and minimize your effort is a no-no
Your chance to support yeah write
The focus at yeah write should be (and is) its close-knit community and its learning environment. We don’t load advertisements on our pages or distract from our visitors’ experience with sponsored posts. Participating in yeah write has always been free and, for certain subscribers, it always will be.
It takes real money to run this thing, though, and for those of you who would like to donate toward the upkeep of this community, we are introducing the monthly subscription. For five dollars a month, you will help keep yeah write operating each week, ad-free. You can subscribe one month at a time or change the quantity on the subscription form to 2–12 (or 1,000) months at a time and pay for your monthly subscriptions all at once.
Bring us your best stuff. Bring us your best stuff when you know it’s gonna be the best on the grid.
Yeah write #98 is open for submissions. Birthday well-wishes in comments…
*For those who may not be into birthdays for religious reasons, email Erica M for the regular weekly badge.