I am a person of MANY words. (Ask my mother. She will tell you that I can’t tell a short story to save my life.)
For this reason when my weekly assignment is due with a requirement to be between 225 and 275 words, I have the hardest time keeping it short. I just can’t seem to do it. How can you possibly make a point in 275 words or less and make it clear? I’m learning to do just that. In doing so, I am learning what details are necessary and which I can probably do without.
So I now have this challenge. Lately I have been bouncing anywhere between writers block, and writers run – where I can’t stop writing and have so many details and things that simply must be expressed. The challenge now put me at a loss of words. And in doing this I find out:
The ability to write well isn’t about how much you can write, but how much you can say without saying so much.
Here is the challenge. Write a story in 6 words or less. Leave yours in the comments and share with friends. Let us see those creative juices get flowing! I can’t wait to see what you come up with.
Here is mine:
“Running hard. Pursuing Jesus. Always enduring.”
How much can you say without saying much?
Nothing really worth it ever came easy.
If you are looking for a career in writing, you have three choices:
- Give up
- Give in
- Give it all you’ve got.
If you choose to give up, then it really isn’t your passion to write, or you write for all the wrong reasons. Giving up because it is hard only shows that this is not something that your heart is really in to. When something is important to you, you will find a way. If it is not all that important to you, then you make excuses.
Secondly, you can give in. You might wonder how this might be different than giving up. The way that I see it, giving up is what happens in the beginning when you realize how hard something really is and you decide it is not worth it. Giving in, however, is when you know the hardships full well and go after your dream. You push through some hard times, but eventually the pain will out-weigh the passion for you, so you give into the pressure and let it go.
Finally, you can choose to give it all you’ve got. Something that I have learned in school is that your passion is measured by your pursuit. If you really want this, then you will go after it with the recognition that yes, there will be days that are hard and there will be days that you really don’t feel like doing it, but because it is your passion and purpose, you endure to the end.
If you want to make it writing, you have to give it all you’ve got. That means even on the hard days you are pushing through. That means that even when you don’t feel like it, you’re still going. Why? Because you remind yourself of the purpose you have in writing.
If your passion is measured by your pursuit, where are you in this race? Will you endure?
Noun: 1. Prose literature, esp. short stories and novels, about imaginary events and people (www.dictionary.com)
I believe that the definition for fiction is not quite as accurate as it could be. This is not to say that it is entirely wrong; on the contrary it is true – but so incomplete.
As previously stated in other posts, the best writing comes from the heart. The best writing is something that is a part of who you are. When you write what you know and what you feel there is a power in it that is otherwise lost. You could be wondering where I am going with this and what fact has to do with fiction, but just stick with me.
The fact on fiction is this: WRITE REAL.
Fiction is almost completely inspired by what is real around us. It could be a sunset, a quote, a news report — anything! We are creative beings. The smallest bit of inspiration can bring on an entire book or foundation for a series of books. Often times I will base my characters in my books on real people who I know. This does several things:
- My characters take on not only a more solid personality, but also have an emotional depth to them that otherwise would be harder to create.
- Allows me to easily flow with the inspiration that comes from being with these people.
- It creates a consistency with how the characters act, react and respond making them seemingly more “real” in the story.
Fact of the matter is, fiction comes out of what is REAL to us as writers. We create something new, out of something we know. Even fantasy comes from somewhere. How creatively can we twist fact to create our fictitious worlds? What other facts on fiction do you have?
Filed under Fiction, Writing
1. Listen to Music: Listening to songs can give you great ideas and inspiration for your next writing! It works best if you listen for deeper meaning and try to analyze the lyrics of the songs!
2. Take A Break: I know when I type for a while, I lose inspiration sometimes. If this happens to you, take a break and get a snack or watch television for a few minutes, then come back and see if you’ve got new inspiration.
3. Be Prepared: Prepare for the battle with a writer’s worst enemy! Take a notebook and write prompts or things of that nature for yourself and then when you have writers block, come back and use your notebook to write something that will give you inspiration.
4. Fill In: Do you already have the end of your writing or a later event or point in your writing planned? Think of a great way to fill in from where you are now to where that event is. It’s like coming up with a perfect route from point A to point B!
5. Base It On YOU: Did something happen in your life that fills you with extreme emotion? Write about it! Fill people with the same emotion! Write something that’s based on that event! It’s all about YOU!
In directing a writing group for middle and high school students, something that I have found to be a motivation and even a cure for writer’s block is a word war. This works especially well if your writers are competitive and for you as well. Countless times I have heard them say they were working on their book and then they stumbled upon a case of writer’s block and haven’t written more than a sentence in 2 or more days.
This is when I would declare what the Writers Unleashed group fondly refers to as “word wars”!
In a word war, there is a set time limit and in that time you have to write as many words in your book (short story, article, written piece) as possible and whoever writes the most words in that time wins. It is as simple as that. What did they win exactly? Well, usually they got over their writers block quickly in order to come out on top and they also would manage to jump 1, 2, 3 and even 8 thousand words in a single session. Our average session is 2 hours long.
Here is the challenge:
Find another writer willing to work with (well, I guess it would be against you) and set the time limit and write for your life! This works well if you are competitive, have writers block, or even if you have trouble finishing. This forces you to turn off your inner editor and finish the project. You can edit later – just get it all written.
Set 30 minutes on the clock and write as fast and as hard as you can. In the comment box leave your word-count for an all-POP word war!