Getting to the top of the grid

If you’ve been participating in yeah write and still find the top row an elusive place to be in the weekly vote, you might want to look more closely at whether you’re giving readers a reason to care about your nonfiction piece. It’s what we call the “so what” of your story.

Drawing readers into your essay can be hard but it can also be mastered with practice. So, first, don’t give up!

Second, common experiences and our reactions to them can be fuel for building the elusive “so what.” Life is full of experiences that transcend many geographic and cultural boundaries—relationships with parents and friends, raising children, walking in nature or in the concrete landscape of cities, being true to yourself versus being true to your community.

What makes a reader want to read more is a connection to the subject matter, to the lyricism in the narrative, to the structure and inventiveness of the essay. If you’ve been writing about your children or being a parent in each essay, change it up. Try a different topic. Your life is bigger, richer than you thought. Your observations may strike a chord or inspire the reader to think a different way than they did before. You can do this. (For more ideas on how to develop your “so what,” read Rowan’s writing advice here.)

Yeah write super challenge #2

The next super challenge for all you fictioneers out there is now open for early registration until September 30 (this Friday!). All you need to know about the contest and registration can be found here. We are so excited to get this one started and hope you are too!

Who’s on fourth

This month we invite you to learn more about our fearless leader, the wonderful Michelle! The interview will publish Monday at 12pm ET, but in the meantime, head over to her page and catch up on all of her awesomeness.

Nonfiction know-how:

brevity

For this month’s nonfiction know-how we’re going to focus on two conflicting aphorisms. The first is “winners never quit; quitters never win” and the second is “quit while you’re ahead.” We’re not talking about quitting writing entirely, of course, but we’re talking about knowing when to stop, and how much is enough. This month, Rowan offers up some advice on how to know when enough is enough.

Want more info?

Is this your first time here? Check out Sunday’s post which kicked off the week here at yeah write. Our email subscribers can also join us in the yeah write coffeehouse at its home on Facebook. If you’ve never taken the time to read them, please take a moment to familiarize yourself with our submission guidelines. The rules are a little different for each of our challenges and we’d hate to have to send back great writing on a technicality.

Did you happen to end up here because you suddenly saw yeah write in your stats? Sometimes members of our community spot excellent writing and they send those posts on over to us. We hope you don’t mind. Take a look around and get to know our community. We’re sure you’ll be happy here.

Have questions you can’t find the answer to by poking around the site? Email us or find us on Facebook and Twitter and we’ll happily help you out.

How to submit and fully participate in the challenge

Basic yeah write guidelines: 1000 word limit; your entry can be dated no earlier than this past Sunday; nonfiction personal essay, creative opinion piece or mostly true story based on actual events.

1. In the sidebar of this week’s post, please grab the code beneath the nonfiction badge and paste it into the HTML view of your entry
2. Follow the Inlinkz instructions after clicking “add your link” to upload your entry to this week’s challenge grid
3. Your entry should appear immediately on the grid if you don’t receive an error message
4. Please make the rounds to read all the entries in this week’s challenge
5. Consider turning off moderated comments and CAPTCHA on your own blog

Submissions for this week’s challenges will close on Wednesday at 10pm ET. Voting will then open immediately thereafter and close on Thursday at 10pm ET. The winners, as always, will be celebrated on Friday.

Thank you for sharing with us your hard work! Good luck in the challenge…

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