You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you. ~Ray Bradbury
StoryADay is a creativity challenge: write (and finish) a short story every day during May.
StoryADay exists to promote creativity, not to teach you how to ‘be a published writer’. There are plenty of resources in the world already for that.
StoryADay’s Guiding Principles
- If you want to write, you should.
- If you want to become a better writer, you should write and finish a lot of pieces, so that you can figure out how to do it!
- If you need a community and the threat of public humiliation to spur to you write, you should commit to a writing challenge and publicize your participation in the same.
StoryADay seeks to support you at whatever stage you are in: from “Yeah! I just finished a story for the first time ever!” to “I think this is ready for publication. I need feedback.” But we’re not here to judge quality. We’re here to encourage you to get the “quantity” part under your belt. Only you can judge your level of success and ideal pace of progress.
Why Short Stories?
- Short stories are deceptively simple. But they are short. They are less intimidating, but just as satisfying, as a novel.
- There are fewer characters and plot threads to balance than in a novel and therefore short stories are a wonderful way for a writer to get plenty of practice going from beginning to middle to end.
- Short stories have no room for fluff. They are great practice for any writer.
- Writing short stories allows you try out many different styles and genres and find your way to your authentic writing voice faster than if you were committed to one big project at a time.
- The short story form is coming back into its own. Electronic media and distribution channels are tailor-made for short form fiction. Every writer needs to be brushing out their short story skills.
So here we are, declaring each May to be:
Story A Day May
How To Participate:
- Write (finish) a story every day in May*.
*No, you don’t have to post it here—or anywhere. Just write.
- Stories may be any length (50 words? 5,000?) but they must be stories (they must take us or the characters somewhere).
- Stories may be fiction or non-fiction (but if you’re already blogging in non-fiction or keeping a journal, consider trying fiction)
- You get to decide what “every day” means. If you need to take Sundays off, go for it. You make your own rules, but you are encouraged to set them up early, and stick to them!
- Joining the StoryADay Advance Notice List helps you stay up-to-date with all the news related to the challenges
- To foster creativity
- To come out with 31 first drafts, nuggets, chapterettes, ideas
- To prove that you can craft a story. Lots of stories. To practice that craft.
- Get on the Advance Notice List to get all the news about the challenges (optional).
- Join The StoryADay Community (registrations open each April).
- Download a StoryADay badge or banner and post it at your favourite online hangout.
- Follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Tumblr.
- Tell everyone you’re participating!
- Sign up for optional writing prompts (daily during the challenge, weekly the rest of the year)
- Take a look at the Inspiration and Productivity links on the Resources page.
- You can write your story on paper in secret, or post at your own site, or in the forums here OR you can simply post an update in the The Victory Dance Group saying that you completed that day’s story.
- See how other StoryADay writers have gone on to do great things.
- Most of all, gather your ideas. You’re going to need at least 31 of them.
By signing up for a username and/or blog at StoryADay.org you are agreeing to use them for non-commercial activities relating to creative writing; and to treat other people with civility and respect. You agree not to violate anyone else’s copyright or trademarks (please, no fan-fiction) or do anything else that might get the site shut down for everyone. The administrator reserves the right to remove blogs or users that violate these terms.
StoryADay.org will never give your contact information to anyone except for the purposes of administering the site or as required by US law. Every effort will be made to keep your email address and any personal information you provide, private and safe.
Who’s Responsible For All This?
StoryADay was founded in early 2010 by Julie Duffy, a writer, blogger and entrepreneur.
With a background in creative writing, journalism, business writing and in the print on-demand publishing field, Julie has wide experience in the writing business. She also understands the needs of the creative writer to forget about the business for a while and just write. (See some of Julie’s published works here.)
In StoryADay’s first year about 100 writers joined in, with about 30% still participating at the end of the month. Every year, participation has increased and people remain as excited as ever to discover that yes, they can write—a lot more than they thought they could. Participants have gone on to publish stories, found writers’ groups, write novels and become productive members of the writing community at large.
“Whether you finish one story this May or thirty-one, I promise you’ll share in the excitement and empowerment felt by every writer who has ever participated in StoryADay,” says Julie. “Keep writing!”
Not sure you want to join yet?
Why not join the Advance Notice List and get updates, useful articles and insider tips?