Weekly Writing Challenge: Ghosts of December 23rds Past
We blog for a million different reasons, but in the end we’re all storytellers. Creative Writing Challenges help you push your writing boundaries and explore new ideas, subjects, and writing styles.
To participate, tag your post with DPchallenge and include a link to this post, to generate a pingback and help others find the challenges — and make sure your post has been specifically published in response to this challenge. We might just highlight some of our favorites on Freshly Pressed on Fridays, or in our monthly newsletter.
It’s time for a year-end retrospective — but bigger. This week, weave a story about yourself told through the lens of your past December 23rds (or 24ths, depending on which side of the International Date Line you’re on as you read this).
Personal stories that make a larger point almost always resonate with readers. As cultural voyeurs, we’re all interested in the details of each others’ lives that we glean from blog posts, but it’s the bigger life lessons, epiphanies, and shared experiences that draw us in. This week, you’ll write that kind of post — but with a very specific focus.
First, we want you to go back through time, to the December 23rd of years past — one year, five years, ten, twenty; it’s up to you. Where were you on those days? Who were you with? What was happening in your life? What were you excited about, or worried about? What was next for you? What were you wearing? (What? Maybe that last one isn’t a deep question, but it’s an interesting one.)
Why December 23rd? Mostly, because that’s today’s date. We also love the idea of focusing on a relatively insignificant day; those days are full of the daily habits, everyday successes and stresses, and small personal moments that are the building blocks of our lives. (If December 23rd is a little too insignificant for you to remember well, feel free to pick another day — January 1st, your birthday, the first day of summer vacation — that jogs your memory a bit more.)
Now, turn that timeline into a story. You’ve got lots of options for how to approach this — try one of our suggestions, or follow whatever inspires you:
- Pick one year that stands out to you, and go into more detail.
- Pick a few years that connect in some way, and tell us about that connection.
- Go through ten years — consecutive or not — and briefly tell us what was going on each year. Then, see if you can pull a out common thread. (If you’ve been blogging for more than a year, try the same thing with your posts from Decembers past.)
- Peer through the mists of time at a future December 23rd — what do you think you’ll be doing then?
- Go through old photos — we know you’ve got shoeboxes of them in the closet — and take us on a photo journey of your Decembers.
- Write some fiction — try a character study of one person, told through snapshots of their December 23rds.
- Create an infographic (or draw your own) taking readers on a visual tour of your Decembers.
Many of us take time at the end of the year to reflect on the past 365 days. The idea here is the same, just on a slightly grander scale. Start with the details of your December 23rds, and build on them to create a post that helps us understand more than what you were wearing.