Write 15 Minutes a Day Challenge (WFMAD) – Day Five

How did you do? Was it totally impossible to make writing time on a national holiday? Was it harder than you thought to summon the motivation on a day off from work when the lack of structured routine made you just want to lie in a hammock and nap?

Or did you manage the day like pro, skillfully making time for writing and everything else? (I did. Wrote from 6am – noon.)

If you fell off the wagon, all is forgiven.

This Challenge is not about kicking you off the island when you mess up. This Challenge is to help you take your writing dream more seriously. Of course you’re going to mess up. You’re human. The trick is not to avoid failing. The trick is to get back to the work immediately after a bad day, without indulging in self-loathing or negative thoughts about your writing potential.

Little kids fall down all the time, but they get up because they want to walk. This is one time when listening to your Inner Toddler is a good thing.

Today’s goal: Write for 15 minutes (minimum).

Today’s mindset: forgiveness and determination.

Today’s prompt: Describe the aftermath of a Fourth of July party (a neighborhood party, or at a beach or one of the big city celebration, or a village town square). The cleaning crew hasn’t been through yet. Have your character move through the mess. (I don’t know who the character is. Make someone up!) Your character is looking for something. Try not to allow yourself to figure what s/he is looking for when you begin writing the scene. It’s fun to just let things pop up. You can write the scene totally with narrative description and interior monologue if you want, or you can throw another character in for dialog. Try to pick details about the setting that provide us with information about how the celebration went.


20 Replies to “Write 15 Minutes a Day Challenge (WFMAD) – Day Five”

  1. They’re back…

    For the last nineteen years, he has volunteered at the same community festivals. The Father’s Day little one, the July 4th big one, and the Labor Day really big one. He has done it all, but settled into his niche as the “Fastest Beer Seller in the Midwest.” Most beer sellers can handle one customer at a time, he handles three. And because of his expediency and smile, he has a crowd of regulars that through their drunken stupor, always manage to to make a connection to a previous function somewhere in their soggy mind. “Hey, I remember you!” is heard over and over above the thumping bass of the main stage.

    Three year ago, on the last day of the Labor Day, he made some new friends. They were three sisters, any and all of them were around his age. All very blond and attractive, all inebriated, all very funny, and all married to very large Norwegian men. They sought him out every festival, for two reasons, he was fun too, and they knew he wouldn’t cut them off. But July 3rd was different.

    Like in years past, they met on Father’s Day, this year before the Gin Blossom’s concert. Except when they met, his ex-wife was standing there and more than a little jealous of the Bear and the three Goldilocks. The ex had no problem explaining to the Goldilocks her side of the story, which made him look, well, not so good. He stood there and took it like a man. It’s hard to explain things to four women when three out of four are on their way to another fun night that will be forgotten. The youngest Goldilock was the brashest, asking questions that polite people do not ask of their closest friends, let alone relative strangers. His only response was to take a quarter from his apron and show all of them that it had two sides.

    July 3rd, amongst decent heat and Ted Nugent, he was doing his thing, selling beer and making new friends when the three Goldilocks found him at his post. They wanted to talk, well, and drink. So on his break, he met the older two and told his side of the story.

    Writing is fun!

  2. I managed to squeeze in about ten minutes before work yesterday (I work in retail, so no day off), and then I wrote for like an hour starting at about 12:30 this morning. Eventually I started confusing characters’ names, so I figured I should go to sleep.

  3. I wrote over 30 minutes yesterday. I had to take my husband into work at 7AM, and then stay on The Strip, and none of our friends work up until 9AM. I sat in the Flamingo Wildlife Exhibit, listened to Guineafowl, wrote and started As You Like It. It was a good morning.

    Today he had to start work at 6AM and our friend’s wedding is at 3:30PM. I’m tired and I have no idea what to wear.

  4. The best part about the 15 minutes a day challenge is that it forces me to work through the parts I’d normally get stuck on. And you know what? I’ve gotten through every single road-block! *ponders* Apparently, the angst about being uncertain what comes next is completely unnecessary. I just have to write, and it all works out. Imagine!

  5. Today’s prompt was fun- I took a couple characters from a piece I’m working on and put them in the 5th of July situation. I love playing outside the bounds of the book sometimes, it reminds me how much fun it is to just write!

  6. Happy 4th of July! I’ve kept my daily writing. I’ll be harder next week, when we’re off camping. Now that’s a challenge!

  7. I wrote the second draft of my ER(easy reader)WIP, and that took well more than fifteen minutes. I also typed it in and sent it off to my editor. I hope she likes it better.

    This challenge is getting me to actually sit down and WRITE. Amazing, isn’t it, how much we can get done if we actually start. Thanks!

  8. Going strong

    I wrote half an hour of notes yesterday and tackled Chapter 14 of my WIP today. The words are pouring out. Happy here!

  9. I put almost another 800 words on my WIP #1 which brought it to exactly 70k, according to OpenOffice word count. This is painfully long and slow at this point and I’m just trying to find the end. Still, this 15 minutes a day challenge is good for me. I should admittedly be doing more than 15 (today I managed 20, which is still paltry, but an improvement) but I’m still recovering from dreaded classwork.

    Still, I had almost allowed myself not to do any at all because I just purchased season 1 of Criminal Minds on DVD and it’s hot and I’m tired and I have millions of other excuses. So THANK YOU for the challenge. I needed it.

    And I finally thought to put on some music which also helped immensely.

  10. This whole busy weekend would have been one excuse after another, but I’ve gotten my 15 minutes or more in every day. Thanks for showing me instead of just telling me.

  11. A new chapter entered!

    Thanks Laurie,
    The fifteen minute a day plan helped me have the courage to get past where I was stuck on my WIP. I actually made it out of the chapter and one paragraph into the next one. I have a whole new unchartered territory to look forward to playing in tomorrow.


  12. whoa! i didn’t think i’d get anything good when i did this yesterday, but the prompt actually gave me some great ideas that formulated into something i ended up continuing today (hence the late comment). the words just flowed instead of me having to think them all out. don’t you just love when that happens?

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