Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Monday, November 2, 2009
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
This is the third to last week! You can do it!
If any of you are like me, there was most likely a prompt during these past 18 weeks that you thought looked interesting, but didn't do for one reason or another. This week's prompt is to do that prompt you didn't do.
For those of you who have done all the prompts, call me and I will buy you an ice cream cone.
Thanks to whirligigdaisy for this idea!
Monday, October 12, 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
Monday, September 28, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Monday, September 14, 2009
I believe we have hit the 100-day writing slump. Therefore, this week's prompt is not so much a writing prompt as an assignment:
Post a comment to this blog telling what motivates or energizes you to write when you are in a slump. What gets you going again? What inspires you? What makes you actually sit down and pick up the pen?
Complete this prompt and you earn the title of Bluesbuster.
Monday, September 7, 2009
Whew! It's amazing how time flies, isn't it? Speaking of time, it's time for this week's prompt. This week's prompt is meant to explore the relationship between setting and character. I know you are all just quivering in anticipation, so here it is:
Choose a setting with which you are familiar, preferably someplace you lived or grew up, and create a character from that setting. Explore the setting to draw your character out of it: what sorts of people exist in that setting? What might some of their challenges be? How would someone from that setting speak, talk, or think?
Then, post your character sketch or a brief scene.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Monday, August 17, 2009
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Monday, August 10 - Sunday, August 16, 2009 * Days #36-#40
Monday, August 3, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
Revise one paragraph of your novel or story so that each sentence does the following:
1. relies on strong, specific nouns and verbs
2. varies in structure
(Read the first page of Louise Erdrich's novel for a good example of this.)
Successfully complete this week's challenge and you earn the rank of Shrinking Adverb. (Add this to your previous titles of: 1. Copycat, 2. Wordsmith, 3. Adaptor of Film, 4. Mad Fish.)
Remember to post your points at the end of each week.
And keep writing! Even one day is better than none!
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Pick a scene from a book that has a particularly high amount of emotion or passion. It can be your current project, but I suggest not using your end climax. Then rewrite the most intense part, but switch the mood. example: Romantic=Horrific, Sad=Happy, Anger=Joy, vice versa, etc. You may change words around, or tweak what is said, as long as it is done so in the same style of said book. And then, somewhere, include a fish as a prop.
Successfully complete this week's challenge and you earn the rank of Mad Fish. (Add this to your previous titles of: 1. Copycat, 2. Wordsmith, 3. Adaptor of Film.)
Remember to post your points at the end of each week.
Saturday, July 4, 2009
Here's how it works. Each week, all of us write and all of us earn points (even MMS Society officers can participate):
1 pt. for each day that you write for a minimum of 15 minutes (you can earn a maximum of 5 pts. since our goal is to write 5 days a week))
1 pt. for completing the week's writing prompt
1 pt. for exceeding our expectations in some way (writing for an extra15 minutes one day; writing for 6 days instead of 5; writing for 20 hours; etc.)
Then, post your total points (out of the 7 pts. possible) by the following Monday at noon, and MMS Society will turn each point into a ticket. That's right, we will hand-write your online name on a ticket, which we'll deposit in a container. Every once in a while, we'll draw a lucky writer's name and award a prize. And we'll certainly award prizes at the end of week #20, so you'll want to earn as many tickets as possible before then. (Tickets will accumulate from week to week. The only time one will be removed is if that person wins a prize.)
To kick things off, we are going to draw a ticket on Tuesday, 14 July. The prize will be an Amazon.com gift certificate, so that the hard-working writer can purchase a film or novel (in honor of this week's prompt) for a bit of R&R. The gift certificate will be emailed to you; you can provide us with your email address if you win.
So, what are you doing reading this blog? Get writing! (We have a rather large roll of tickets to use up.)
But first, it might be a good idea to read the instructions for week #3.
Monday, July 6 – Sunday July 12, 2009 * Days #11 - #15
This week's prompt: Take a short sequence from one of your favorite movies, and re-write it as a novel. Pay special attention to the camera shots and where it cuts, as though the movie would be made shot-by-shot from what you had written. So if the sequence begins as a wide-shot of a suburb street, be sure to describe what the camera takes in--the trees and houses in rows, etc.
Successfully complete this week's challenge and you earn the rank of Adaptor of Film.
This week's goal: Complete the prompt (1 point possible) and continue to write for at least 15-minutes a day on 5 separate days of the week (5 points possible). (If you exceed our goal in some way, you can earn 1 additional point.) Remember to post your total at the end of the week, along with any of your writing, thoughts, ideas.
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Monday, June 29 – Sunday July 5, 2009 Days #6 - #10
Fifteen minutes a day helps your writing progress in amazing ways. :-)
Find a dictionary or encyclopedia--it MUST be paper, not online. Open it at random and, without looking at the words on the page, put a finger down on the page. Then, pick any word within a one-inch radius of your finger. Use that word as your writing prompt to create a scene for your current writing project. (If you can't find a print encyclopedia or dictionary (sad), then open up any book, magazine, or newspaper and follow the same instructions.)
For example, I got the word "expectations." Now I will create a scene that uses expectations in some way.
Successfully complete this week's challenge and you earn the rank of Wordsmith.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Monday, June 22 – Sunday June 28, 2009 § Days #1 - #5
Welcome to the first week of the 100 Days . . . Challenge, where we can write it, one minute at a time!
How to get started:
- Download and print the tracker for weeks #1 – 5 (the link is on the right hand side of the blog)
- Post the tracker on your fridge or wherever you will see it daily (consider giving yourself rewards for meeting weekly goals)
- Start writing. All you need to do to meet this week's challenge is write on 5 separate days of the week for a minimum of 15 minutes each day and complete the weekly exercise (you can complete this during one of your 15-minute writing sessions, if you like)
- Feel free to post a small section of your writing, tell us what you achieved during the week, or simply let us know that you met the weekly goal (this will help keep us inspired and moving forward)
This week's exercise: Select a novel or story that you love. Read a favorite paragraph several times. Then write for a minimum of fifteen minutes in that same style. This means you can copy tone, sentence structure, style, pacing, topic, or whatever you like most about the passage.
Successfully complete this week's challenge and you earn the rank of Copycat.
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Invitation to Participate in 100 Days to More Brilliant Writing
Want to get going on your writing again? Join us for 100 weekdays of writing-related exercises. If you complete all 100 days, you'll earn a prize.
We're officially starting on Monday, June 22, 2009, but we're kicking it off a week early, for those of you who religiously check this blog, on Monday, June 15, 2009.
Express your interest in joining the challenge by replying to this posting.
What We Hope to Achieve
After attending the BYU Writing and Illustrating for Young Readers workshop, we decided we wanted to improve our craft through one hundred weekdays of:
1. Seeing ourselves as writers:
- develop/improve our general mindset and persona as a writer
- go to conventions and workshops, meet with other writers, network
- writing regularly
2. Constant vigilance in completing a project:
- dedicate time each day to writing
- submit polished work; advance in the writing industry
3. Regular reading and study of contemporary writing
- read non-fiction on writing
- read fiction and non-fiction with a critical eye and for pleasure
4. Daily writing to hone technical skills and develop artistry
- perfect the technical aspects of writing such as narrative structure, character development, setting
- develop virtuosity in our use of imagery, repetitions, voice, style, etc.
- workshop and help others to hone their craft
- successfully convey our artistic vision
- have passion and soul
And, we wanted to invite you (and everyone you would like to invite) to join us in the journey toward more brilliant writing.
Here's How It Works
The 100 days will be broken up into 20 weeks. We're only counting weekdays, so the weekends can be used to catch up if necessary. Each week the My Manuscript Stinks Society* will post an exercise emphasizing one or more of the above points. The goal is to complete the weekly exercise, as well as a specific number of minutes of writing each day. You will set your own goal for how many minutes you will write each day; in order to qualify for a prize, your goal must be 15 or more minutes a day.
Throughout the 100 days, feel free to post your completed weekly exercise or updates of your progress. This will encourage each of us to keep going.
Keep track of your progress during the 100 days. If you successfully reach your daily minute goal as well as the weekly exercise, you will receive a prize of such greatness that you will be ecstatic for years to come (or something).
Remember, the 100 days will officially start on Monday, June 22, 2009.
Pre-Week Writing Exercise for Monday, June 15 – Sunday, June 21: Character Week
This week, collect, study, and describe objects your character would own or use; jot down phrases your character would speak; visit and describe places that might be important to your character; try on clothes that your character would wear; eat or make foods that your character would enjoy/hate; find a photograph (online or elsewhere) of what your character looks like; research what your character's name means; research your character's job, school system, courses, lessons, extracurricular activities, etc.; research habits and qualities of animals they own; research your character's culture and locale; interview your character; observe real children/teens that are the age of your character; or invent your own character-related prompt. This week's goal is to get to know any of your characters better.
Pick something from the list to work on each day, or work on one item over several days. Remember to write descriptions, scenes, or notes on your findings. You should spend a minimum of 15 minutes writing each day. (In other words, you can't count surfing the internet looking for a picture of your character as writing.) Clarification: As long as you complete one character-related prompt during the week AND write for 15 minutes each day, you will meet this week's goal.
*Attention My Manuscript Stinks Society board: Be thinking of great prompts to post.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Challenge: complete the list and post the results:
1. What is one of your favorite books and why?
2. What is your best advice on writing?
3. What do you value the very most in a story?
4. What writing have you been working on lately (you don't have to give too much away)?
5. Who is one of your favorite authors?
6. Anything else?