Distractions

I’m not going to lie here: I am the Queen of Distractions. I will find any excuse to get distracted by something to the point where I can’t get anything done. Some of it is legit, like people talking or terrible music playing overhead. But other things are just ridiculous. For example, I have been trying to finish a particular piece for weeks now, and I kept coming up with other things to do instead. All of these things needed to get done, but not necessarily at the time I was doing them. Other distractions, like transcribing everything on my whiteboard onto paper so that I could erase the whiteboard and rewrite the items neater, are really just a way to waste time.

At this point, this thing I’ve been working on is past due and really needs to be finished and set free. I’ve been working at it all day, and it’s still not done. I decided to take a break from it to write this week’s post. I’m probably also going to clean my office and then cry that the piece still isn’t done. But hey, in the end, as long as these things eat up all my time, I have plenty of excuses to avoid finishing my memoir and continuing on my fiction project, right?

Hopefully you’re not avoiding writing this week. Tell us quick in the comments what you do to waste time, then go write your grid submission!

Welcome to Week 354

We’re kicking off the week in style at YeahWrite with both our competitive challenge grids in one post, plus prompts, tips, tricks and more. You asked, we answered! Keep scrolling down cause it’s all right here.

Submissions for this week’s challenges open on Monday at 12 midnight and 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.

Having trouble getting started? Hop on over to our quick guide. And don’t forget to doublecheck the full submission guidelines before you hit that button.

Looking For Microprose?

Our tiniest challenge with the biggest bang is open the first Wednesday of every month from midnight to 10 p.m.

Nonfiction Challenge

Moody

I should be happy. The snow is melting, and it’s not even February. But I KNOW how it goes. We aren’t done yet, not by a long-shot. All the snow will finally disappear, and then we will have some polar-bomb-vortex-cyclone or whatever the hell the next mother of all storms is, and then two-plus feet of snow will blanket all the things. Welcome to winter in New England. Calgon take me away! If only it were that simple. But hey we can escape any reality by writing. Let’s do it! Bring me your mostly-true stories this week.

Technique Toolbox

New year, new look: we’ve revamped the old Nonfiction Know-how to include our fictioneers. We’re kicking the year off with a bang, too! We know you’ve sworn to write more this year, and that you’re combing the ‘net for inspiration. But how do you acknowledge those linkups, prompts, and accountability buddies without losing your reader’s interest? Rowan has some ideas for you right here.

Nonfiction challenge grid:

Basic YeahWrite guidelines: 750 word limit; your entry can be dated no earlier than this past Sunday; nonfiction personal or persuasive essay, creative opinion piece or mostly true story based on actual events.

Check the submission guidelines for our full set of rules. If you’re not sure how to link up, hop over to our quick tutorial for getting started at YeahWrite! Otherwise, click that blue button when the challenge is open, and good luck! Come back to vote starting Wednesday at 10pm, and check out our winners on Friday!

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Fiction|Poetry Challenge

The Art and Craft of Writing

The Writer’s Festival is coming up soon in my city, and I’m super excited about it. I also wish I could clone myself because I’d like to go to so many things that overlap. Last year, I went with a friend who was visiting from overseas. This year, I’m hoping to convince one of my kids to come with me. It’s a terrific opportunity to hear from published writers about their journeys, their approaches to the craft of writing, and their thoughts on the art of writing. Have you been to writing related festivals and conferences? Were they helpful? Let us know in the comments, or in the YeahWrite Coffeehouse.

January Poetry Slam: Erasure

Out with the old, in with the new. Or rather, let’s make something old into something new this month, as Rowan teaches us to experiment with erasure poems. These no-meter no-rhyme poems are made by deleting words from an existing text. Rowan’s even got some fun ideas for how to show the difference between the original text and your poem. Won’t you join us?

Prompt Up!

Prompt Up is our weekly writing prompt for the fiction|poetry challenge! Here’s how it works:

For Fiction

  • there will be two prompts each week: a prompt generated by the YeahWrite editors and a prompt generated by a previous winner of the fiction|poetry challenge. That’s right! Winners decide one of the prompts! If you’re a crowd fave winner on the fiction|poetry grid, keep an eye out for an email from us. If we don’t hear back from you by the deadline, we’ll pick our own prompt, and what fun is that? Generally, winners will decide the prompt for the challenge two after the one they won (so 349 picks 351, and so forth).
  • the two prompts are MANDATORY for flash fiction submissions.
  • the two prompt styles will vary month to month; they may include emotions, specific words, a specific sentence, genres, photographs, etc. There is no limit to how we can change it up.
  • the prompts will be posted in the kick-off on Sunday. Submissions will be accepted through Wednesday at 10pm EST (same as before). Everyone will have a little less than 4 days to write and edit a story.
  • YeahWrite editors reserve the right to alter the winner’s prompt. We’ll give you some suggestions for what makes a prompt inspiring and functional, but we’ve noticed that some work better than others, and if we think folks will struggle with yours, we might need to tweak it.

For Poetry

  • You’ll need to incorporate at least one of the three possible prompts. Each fiction prompt counts as a single prompt, and the poetry slam counts as a prompt.
  • This means you can write poetry about one of the two fiction prompts, in any form you like, or about anything you like, using the form given in that month’s poetry slam.
  • Yes, you can use more than one of our prompts in your poem!

We’re very excited about our new challenge, and we hope you are, too!

The first prompt is: a singer.

The second prompt, the sentence that your story must contain, from YeahWrite #352 fiction|poetry winner Laura, is: “She stretched out one hand.”

Poets: write a poem that includes a singer, a poem that includes the prompt sentence (above), or an erasure poem.

Fiction|poetry challenge grid:

Basic YeahWrite guidelines: 750 word limit; your entry can be dated no earlier than this past Sunday; fiction or poetry only.

Check the submission guidelines for our full set of rules. If you’re not sure how to link up, hop over to our quick tutorial for getting started at YeahWrite! Otherwise, click that blue button when the challenge is open, and good luck! Come back to vote starting Wednesday at 10pm, and check out our winners on Friday!

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YeahWrite Super Challenge

Registration for Super Challenge #7 (Nonfiction) is open now! Make sure you sign up for our email blast so you don’t miss out on any announcements for the Super Challenge.

Winners’ Round-Up

In case you missed them, you can find last week’s YeahWrite staff picks and crowd favorites all laid out for you on last Friday’s winners’ post. Leave the winners some love in the comments. They will love you right back, we guarantee it.

Last call: This week’s Weekend Writing Showcase is still open for business until the challenge grids start at midnight! No moderation, no voting. It’s a laid-back relaxed kind of place. Just leave your commercial or sponsored posts at home. Drop by, share your work, and while you’re there, visit your fellow yeah writers.

About the author:

Michelle submitted her first entry to YeahWrite in March 2012 and they haven’t been able to get rid of her since. After nearly 20 years in the insurance/employee benefits industry, she decided to give it all up to pursue writing full time. Her work has been featured on The Huffington Post and xoJane, as well as several local sites near her northern NJ home. She blogs at Michelle Longo.

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