Day 31 – The Story Of You, Superstar

Here we are: the last day!

Today I’m sharing the final Superstar post with everyone, because I think everyone needs to take a moment to celebrate!!

Audio only

Transcript

I hope that you have found this illuminating, frustrating, exhilarating…

I know there were days when you weren’t thrilled with what you write and that there were days when you surprised yourself or made yourself really happy.

More than that, YOU know that you have 31 days under your belt, of writing whether you felt like it or not.

(Even if you didn’t write every day, I’m willing to be there were days this month when you wrote when you didn’t want to and you finished a story even when you thought it wasn’t worth it and that act of finishing showed you that you can do this.)

You’ve pushed yourself and I want you to take some time today to make some notes about what you’ve learned, about your rhythms of writing; about how things work for you.

I can give you advice, and Stephen King can give you advice, and none of it really matters. It’s great to put yourself in a community of people talking about things that matter to you, and you can learn from other people’s examples, for sure, but the only way to discover how you write, is to write.

At the end of this 31 days, you’ll have learned something about your rhythm, your practice of writing.

The Prompt

Write a story about a creative person who has just completed, or is in the throes of completing a massive creative effort.

(And yes, this can be autobiographical).

Youc ould tak us thorugh the manic process of trying to finish up the work. You can show us their post-event hysteria/collapse. You can have them reflecting on the effort.

Pay attention to the physicality of it.

Go anywhere you want with this.

It doesn’t have to be serious. It can be self-indulgent (you’ve earned it!)

Looking Backwards And Looking Forwards

I hope this has been a great experience for you.

Write your story today and then take a moment to blog or journal or tweet or whatever you do to celebrate and share.

Take some time to really revel in the fact that you have devoted these 31 days, regardless of how much you were able to turn up, or how often you were able to write, or how good your stories were, you devoted this month to paying attention to your inner writer.

You have these materials now, you can come back at any time and dive back into these prompts, the meditations, the forum. You’ve met these people who have gone through this experience with you and you’ve made some connections. I hope you will stay in touch with each other. Having a cohort of people to help each other out is an amazing thing. These people who know and like you will be your biggest boosters, so stay in touch. Take advantage of the fact that you have this group of people how have shared this experience with you.

(And if you weren’t part of the Superstars group this time around, keep watching your inbox for the next opportunity. I’ll be running this again in September and next May, at the very least.)

Make your plans for the rest of the year. As you’re writing your celebratory blog/journal entry and going through the worksheet about what you’ve learned this month, think about your plans are for the rest of the year, the rest of the next five years…

Think about how you can put into practice. everything you’ve learned in this month to honor your urge to write to be creative, to write. If you need to be part of a group of people who commit to writing regularly, then you’re going to need to find a group. It might be the SWAGr group–come along on the first of the month, and make sure you’re on the SWAGr notifications list by signing up at the bottom of this page. Maybe you need a real-life group fo people who meet in a cafe on Saturday mornings and does a write-in. Find one. Look on Meetup.com. Start one!

Whatever you need, figure it out, commit to doing it.

Set yourself some goal. Make most of them attainable, but think about having one big, scary, outrageous goal. Think about the steps you can take to get yourself closer to realizing that goal, or at least working towards it.

Thank you for coming along on this journey. I learn a lot from you, and from producing these materials, so I really appreciate you being here. I love getting to know you and building this tribe of people who are on each other’s side as we strive to be writers everyday, not ‘someday’.

Write your story today. Journal about your experiences this month. Watch your inbox for more information from me in the months ahead, and most of all…

Keep writing!!

And don’t forget to sign up to receive reminders about the Serious Writers’ Accountability Group (SWAGr) below!

What are your plans for the months ahead? What would you like to see here at StoryADay to help you reach your goals? Leave a comment (or a link to your blog post) below.

Day 30 – Change Your Point Of View

Welcome back to the penultimate day of your month of extreme short story writing.

After setting you free yesterday, I’m putting a few more limits on you again today.

The Prompt

Take a story that you wrote earlier this month, and tell it from a different point of view

The point of this prompt is to show you that sometimes a story benefits from being told in a different way. Noir stories work in first person because that’s what we’re used to. Something set in a Victorian era works well in Third Person Omniscient because that’s how Dickens wrote–it’s what we’re used to.

Use this prompt as an excuse to play with a story and make it richer, through voice.

Day 29 – The Story You’ve Been Waiting To Write

Here we are, the final three days of this extreme month of writing.

It’s so impressive that you’re still here, that you’re still writing, that you’re still coming back to this.

I know you have stories you want to tell, that the world needs to hear.

Your experiences, your outlook, your way of expressing yourself, are unique in the history of the world and I’m so glad you’ve come this far, and you’re still writing.

And I know you’re going to continue to write, because you’ve come this far.

Today I’m giving you a prompt that might seem a little lazy from me, but there’s a reason.

The Prompt

Write the story that you’ve been hungering to write.

I’ve been very proscriptive this month, telling you what you write, and you’ve been writing for four weeks. You’ve got stories in your head that are nipping at your brain, whispering “tell me!”, so today I’m setting you free.

Tell one of those stories.

Leave a comment to let us know what you wrote today

Day 28 – Use These Words

This is the kind of writing prompt that puts so many limits on your story that you can’t worry about making the story good. Sometimes you end up with a good story, but the silliness of the prompt removes all pretension and blocks.

The Prompt

Your story must include these words; ink, previously, work, breeze, seven, run, delicious, example, spontaneous, barb.

This is a fun one to share in the comments!

Day 27 – Start At The End

The Prompt

Start a story that begins with the ending, then immediately jumps back in time.

e.g. “It all started 12 hours ago.”

Think of this as the way someone might shoot a heist movie: a character is being led out in handcuffs and a voiceover says, “It all started 12 weeks ago.”

(In a short story you probably need to keep the scale in hours as this means you don’t have too many scenes.)

Don’t worry too much about getting this perfect. Feel free to be cheesy. Just have fun. Leave a comment to let us know how you got on!

Day 26 – The Sale

Today’s prompt lets you practice your dialogue and thinking about communicating your characters’ motivations to the reader.

The Prompt

One character is trying to sell something to another character. .

This could be metaphorical: they are trying to sell them an idea.

It could be literal: they’re trying to sell them a car.

 

Leave a comment letting us know how it went (and what you decided to sell!)

Day 24 – Disappearing Act

This week’s theme is, in part, to encourage you to try out stories that use each of the types of story threads from the MICE quotient.

The Prompt

Tell a story that features a disappearance

This could be an Intrigue/Idea story. At it heart it has a question, or a mystery or a big idea.

It could be the disappearance of a person, a cultural phenomenon, or of the bees, or of Arctic Ice. Or it could be something more nebulous. Your story could be serious or slapstick. What will you come up with?

What did you make disappear? What kind of story did you write? What tone did your story take on, today? Leave a comment and let us know!