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Writers, Do You Challenge Your #AmWriting Through Your Blog?

I woke up today with my writing on my mind, with a perfect ending to my story, and a perfect way to reach it.
I sat down and wrote it in three hours, and sent it off to my favorite beta reader. Wish there were more days like this—but most days come and pass me by with no good words written, nothing I would like to keep. Some days it is a struggle to write, so I just revise.

Which is why, I need practice, more ‘active’, ‘conscious’ practice. And to give myself exactly that, I’m writing fiction everyday for the whole month of April for the A to Z Challenge. If you haven’t heard about it yet—it had 1300 participants last year, this year the figures would be higher.

This challenge basically requires 26 posts in 26 days based on 26 letters of the alphabet, one post beginning with each letter.
I completed the A to Z Blogging challenge last year and not only did I make a host of blog friends, I also saw my blog visits shoot through the roof. I wrote one story a day, and at the end of it, published it as a book of short fiction, A to Z Stories of Life and Death, which got a lot of love from all its readers.
If the prospect of a month-long blogging challenge excites you, read the founding host Arlee Bird’s explanation of the nitty-gritties of the challenge.
 And like I said in my last post, I need your help to complete the challenge, so drop me a few leads in that post! (Thanks to Stuart Nager, Rae Weaver and Arlee Bird for your prompts via e-mail!)

I’m helping host the challenge this year with some great bloggers. We’re also running a video challenge for A to Z with videos like this one. Go the blog for the announcement–some cool prizes are waiting for you!

Another, shorter, but no less challenging creative writing event I’ve decided to participate in is the I’m Hearing Voices Blogfest. It is an awesome event hosted by Cassie Mae at Reading, Writing, and Lovin’ it! and Angie at Live to Write…Edit when Necessary
This blogfest encourages us writers to delve deeper into our characters and here’s how we do it:

February 6th – MondayCharacters on the couch: Have one of your characters answer the following questions (to make this work to your benefit, choose a character who is the hardest for you to write 🙂 Max 250 words (Not including the questions—only the answers).

1.      What is your biggest vulnerability? Do others know this or is it a secret?

2.      What do people believe about you that is false?

3.      What would your best friend say is your fatal flaw? Why?

4.      What would the same friend say is your one redeeming quality? Why?

5.      What do you want most? What will you do to get it?

February 8th – Wednesday – Dialogue Introduction: Have two characters introduce each other using only dialogue—no backstory, no internalization, just dialogue between the two. Max 250 words.

February 10th – Friday – Emotion Flash Fiction: Emotion is the engine of a story. Pick an emotion and in a flash fiction piece of 250 words MAKE us feel it! We want to connect with your character. This will be a challenge in 250 words.
So, if you have the time to spare, go gear up for these challenges. As a writer I think I need challenge and  discipline, and I’m doing what I can to get it through my blog. 
What about you? Do you ever challenge yourself through your blog?
Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her next literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and was published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • Clare says:

    Sounds like two interesting challenges. I might give at least one of them ago for my WIP novel.

  • Good luck with the A-Z fiction special challenge.
    I haven't yet decided whether to go in for it this year or not. I enjoyed it last year, though.
    I've written my first Voices post as well already.

  • I am definitely going to try the A-Z challenge. Writing everyday for a month will be a challenge in itself but then add on the alphabet challenge to it :/

  • Ready for the A to Z, but otherwise I still have two more blogfests and a book release before that time, so I think I've hit my limit.

  • I've been thinking about trying A to Z this year. In fact, I've almost got myself talked into it. 🙂 Congrats on your writing. That's great!

  • Arlee Bird says:

    Facing challenges makes us better at what we do and better at who we are. The A to Z is one of the best. Hoping we get some great videos to entertain us before the challenge begins.

    You're kicking things off well, Damyanti.

    Have you heard about the A to Z Video Challenge?
    Blogging from A to Z

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