Thank you to everyone who participated! Great stories and to those who stretched their imaginations, Congratulations. ❤ Below is the round-up of all the February poems, flashes, short stories, and some artwork too! If I missed yours for some reason, please add a link in the comments and I’ll happily reblog. I invite everyone to enjoy some unique stories and meet some wonderful writers. I’ll post March’s prompt on the 1st!
He lost interest at that point, but maybe you want to know more.
What is a Mini-WriMo?
I first heard the term Mini-WriMo years ago after nearly collapsing from exhaustion after a full-fledged NaNoWriMo. And since that mention, I do various versions of mini writing bursts throughout the year.
It’s basically a time-limited, personal challenge to focus on writing. The best part? You set your own goals based on what’s achievable for you and what you want to accomplish.
Why does it work?
1. Because it’s supremely flexible. What we write, how we write, and the needs of our projects are all different and constantly evolving. A mini-WriMo can be whatever you wish based on your goals.
2. You pick the time period – a week, two weeks, a month.
3. You decide on the measure – a certain number of words, a finished outline, completed character bios, or an hour of writing 3 times a week. Perhaps daily journaling to brainstorm ideas. You can write a paragraph a day, or give yourself editing or blogging goals. How about developing a marketing plan (something I’ve been meaning to do for 10 years!).
4. You can under-promise and overachieve. If you think you can consistently write 1K words a day, make your goal 500. If you go over, that’s just fine. You want to make your goal easy to accomplish.
5. No one needs to validate your efforts – you’re only accountable to yourself, your muse, and the writing gods.
6. It can loosen a block. If you’re feeling blocked, it forces you to write at least a little bit, and sometimes, that’s all it takes to get the keyboard clacking.
7. It’s “official!” You get to explain to your family your “official” and “very important” challenge that you committed to as well as your “critical” time requirements. This is extremely helpful in my family. If I simply want to write, I don’t get the same kind of time and space as when I sigh and inform them that I’ve made an “official commitment.”
8. You get a badge – even for an attempt to meet your goals. Here it is for your downloading pleasure (pixabay images):
Why am I telling you this?
Because I’m tending to a Ninny Rhino for the month of March. Want to join in? At the end of the month, I’ll set up a post so we can all share our successes in the comments. 🙂
For all you speculative-fiction-prompt writers, Jason runs a micro-fiction (99-word or less) weekly prompt. He graciously gave me the win on two of them, that I wanted to share here. Stop by his site to read his stories and check out the weekly prompts. 🙂 Thanks, Jason!
The ever awesome D. Wallace Peach of Myths of the Mirror has won the January 23rd Aether Prompt with a haunting little passage about going home…
I couldn’t remember most of the day or when the blizzard started. But I knew my plane home from the war was leaving soon, and I’d be mighty sorry to miss it. My keys weren’t in my pocket, but my papers were—name, address, serial number—tucked there by my children. “Just show them to the officer,” they said.
Still in slippers, my feet ached with cold. I needed my boots, but there wasn’t time now. The airfield lights glowed through the snow, my plane’s props whirling. The old boys greeted me beneath the white wings and flew me home.
Congratulations! Now you’re in the running for the 2019 AETHEREAL ENGINEER WRITER SUPPORT PRIZE PACKAGE! How might she, or possibly you, perchance win such fabled treasure…
I’ve been procrastinating regarding my writing for the first time in 10 years. Why? Partly because of this dang speculative fiction prompt challenge I started. It’s not the busy-ness that’s holding me up. It’s that the responses are so creative and fun, and I’m all over the blogosphere reading and visiting old and new friends.
In terms of writing, my most productive time of day is first thing in the morning when I can indulge in big chunks of creative time. And here I sit at 5:00 AM writing this post… procrastinating!
I did finish the first draft of Book 2 in my current WIP trilogy, but it took me a month to write the last three chapters – instead of a week – ugh. It was more fun to play with cover ideas. I can do that for days on end.
I don’t know the titles yet – these are place-holders – and I’ll probably have covers done professionally, so this very likely is just more procrastination!
(I haven’t purchased these images, (thus the watermark). I certainly will if I decide to use them).
Okay, enough procrastinating, Diana. Time to start on Book 3. Knuckle under and get cracking! Or maybe I’ll quickly check on the blog first… See what I mean? Arrgh! Lol.
How do you procrastinate, and however do you get back on track?
gifts for mommy
scribbled words of love
fly from children’s fingers
to rest in attic boxes
while affections stray to others
and in the dawn of a winter’s day
she unfolds her faded hearts, loved anew
Agatha inherited her grandmother’s home, a small thing as houses went, with creaky floors and spidery cracks, a kitchen with two hundred years of updates and none of them modern. The place smelled of beeswax and herbs, lemon polish, patchouli, and memories.
She loved the quaint place that would become her home, but it was the formal garden that she roamed first. The Garden of Good Intentions, a little hand-painted sign said at the start of the nearest path. Neatly edged walkways, lined with bright fireworks of lavender, divided the round garden into quarters like slices of pie. All well-tended. But it was the myriad roses that had soaked up her grandmother’s devotion—old garden heirlooms and hybrid teas, exotics and wild species, miniatures and clusters of grandifloras.
The garden had once filled Agatha’s childhood with magic, but now as she strolled the pathways, her eyes widened with dread. She was born with a withering, wilting, aphid-prone, black-spotted thumb. In a year, the cherished garden would be dead.
Despite its impending doom, the place was worth an effort at least. Lips pressed between her teeth, Agatha rummaged in the shed for clippers and gloves and donned her grandmother’s straw hat with plastic daisies wired to the brim.
She watered too much when she wasn’t watering too little, cut away dying canes and broke a few living ones, deadheaded, and made her own fertilizers and bug sprays that scarcely worked. In the autumn, she trimmed the bushes back so far that she figured a few would never see spring. And yet somehow, they always recovered after a year… or two, heavy with blooms, vibrant, and smelling like heaven.
Jocelyn inherited her grandmother’s home with its creaky floors and spidery cracks, and though the kitchen had been updated, the place still smelled of honey and herbs, lemon polish and memories. She loved the quaint place that would become her home, but it was the beautiful garden that she roamed first. The Garden of Good Intentions, a hand-painted sign said at the start of the nearest path.
For visually challenged writers, this is an image of an elephant in a snowstorm next to a little house that’s resting crookedly in a tree. A handful of white mice are on the roof of the house.
Thank you to everyone who responded to January’s prompt. There are marvelous imaginations out there, and I loved reading and sharing your stories, poems, and artwork. Now, for something a little different! Above is February’s image. If interested, you have until February 21st to submit a response. Happy Writing!
Here’s how it works:
On the first of every month, I’ll post a speculative fiction prompt from Pixabay. These images are attribution free so you can use them on your blog without worrying about copyright restrictions.
Throughout the month, in order of receipt, I’ll reblog as many of your prompt-inspired creations as I can. And on the last day of each month, I’ll share a complete round-up of all contributions with links to the original posts. Visiting the blogs of participants is a great way to meet other speculative fiction writers.
Post your response on your own blog and link back to this post with a pingback, so I can reblog your post as well as include you in the month-end round-up. There are no word limits or style restrictions, but please keep it somewhat family friendly.
If you’re unsure of how to create a pingback, Hugh has an excellent tutorial here. If you prefer, you can copy and paste your link into the comments of this post.