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Greetings Earthlings!

What’s your writing soundtrack?

No, that’s not this week’s question. It’s just something I am curious about. Years ago I figured out that I cannot, absolutely cannot, write while listening to music with lyrics. It’s too easy to get sucked into someone else’s story. For a long time I wrote against a background of Mozart and Mahler, Glinka and Smetana*, until I stopped to listen to those wordless stories as well. Now I write in silence; the only stories I hear are my own.

Tell us, do you write with music? Do you need a beat to drive your fingertips? Or an auditory wave to lift you up? Leave a comment, let us know.

*Seriously, though, listen to Smetana’s Má vlast. It tells an epic story entirely without words.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Answer the ultimate question in exactly 42 words: what are you singing?

You can sing a song, can sing the blues, can sing joy, can sing your confession to the cops… Just make sure it’s clear to the reader what you are singing–present tense, people–and if you include actual lyrics, remember to include attribution links for any part of your work that isn’t your own. Format them like I did above, as text links. Do not add your attributions separately as they will count toward your 42-word limit.

Don’t get disqualified on a technicality

READ THE SUBMISSION GUIDELINES. Take us seriously so we can take you seriously.

COUNT YOUR WORDS. Use your eyes, not your word processor. Your post may not be eligible for voting if you go over or under 42 words. And remember, any words surrounding your microstory — explanations, references, footnotes, shout-outs, etc. — will be counted against your 42-word limit. (The only exception is photo credits.)

PROOFREAD. Nothing is easier, and nothing will get you bumped from the voting grid faster than typos, spelling or punctuation mistakes, or grammatical errors. You’ve only got 42 words; mistakes stick out.

ANSWER THE QUESTION. We try to give you some basic guidelines with every question; pay attention to what we’re looking for. Keep in mind that your post has to make sense if your reader doesn’t know the question. Don’t use the question as your title or anywhere else in your piece.

Need a second set of eyes? Find yourself a writing partner over in the yeah write coffeehouse.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

The top 42 entries will be open for voting on Thursday

You may enter only one gargleblaster microstory. Submissions are moderated. All entries will show up on our submissions grid, and up to 42 entries will be moved to the voting grid, which opens on Thursday. Everybody: read, comment, vote! Participation is the key to making this community work.

If you don’t make the voting grid, don’t despair – you’ll get a detailed love letter from our wonderful submissions editor, Rowan G., letting you know what needed improvement. Email us or head over to our pages on Facebook and Twitter with any questions.

Winners will be announced on Friday

Look for Friday’s combined winners’ post to see the crowd favorites and editors’ picks from across all of our challenge grids.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Submit to the yeah write microstory challenge

The yeah write weekly writing challenge is now open for microstories. You can check out the submission guidelines and join us with your 42-word microstory using the button below.

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What else is happening around here?

We’ve got the nonfiction challenge opening on Mondays, the fiction and poetry challenge on Tuesdays, the microstory challenge on Wednesdays, and the come-one, come-all moonshine grid for the weekends. We’ve also got a great hangout space over at the coffeehouse. Make sure you subscribe to our weekly e-mail blast so you don’t miss out.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]