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And Now For Something Completely Different

For some of us, blogging is personal. Others are trying to educate or entertain; many more are hybrids. Yet we’re…

  • Ready to write? We’ll give you a new challenge each Monday. Publish a new post on your blog that interprets the challenge. Include a pingback and we’ll list your post below. Learn More

For some of us, blogging is personal. Others are trying to educate or entertain; many more are hybrids. Yet we’re all storytellers. We all want to feel confident in what we’re offering when we hit “publish.” Creative Writing Challenges help you to push your writing boundaries, show off your blogging chops, and, hopefully, spark more post ideas.

To participate, tag your post with DPchallenge or leave a link to it in the comments. (It would also be great if you could link to this post to encourage people to take part–the more the merrier!)  Your post should be specifically written in response to this challenge; obvious attempts to link-bait will be deleted. We’ll keep an eye on the tag and highlight the week’s best posts on Freshly Pressed each Friday.

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Last week, we highlighted Tim of Get Second Lunch, whose latest post had just been Freshly Pressed. One of the things that drew us to his post was his unique style—illustration-heavy posts that give him a great opportunity to put his own spin on familiar topics.

We certainly don’t want to suggest that everyone needs to start illustrating their posts; goodness knows The Daily Post would just end up awash in crudely-drawn stick figures. It did get us thinking, though: what if we occasionally pushed ourselves out of our comfort zones and tried an unexpected post style? It could be interesting to readers, but more importantly, it could help us expand our boundaries, push past writers’ block, and spark ideas for other posts.

So this week, we challenge you to step outside your blogging box and try something totally different:

  • If you normally write non-fiction, try fiction.
  • If you normally write fiction, try poetry.
  • If you normally post photos, try writing.
  • If you normally just write, try including photos.

Need a little more guidance? Check out these post types, and pick one. Don’t opt for something that seems immediately doable; go with something you’ll have to work at a bit:

  • Stream-of-consciousness
  • Short fiction
  • A day in the life
  • Instructions on doing/making something
  • Top ten lists
  • An open letter
  • An explanation of a topic you know a lot about
  • A walk down memory lane
  • A rant
  • News/current event analysis
  • A book, movie, or music review

The goal of this challenge isn’t to turn you into someone you’re not, but simply to see what you can take away from trying something completely new. The better we understand all the creative avenues open to us, the more effective we can be as writers, bloggers, and communicators.

At the end of your post, take a minute to reflect on the experience of creating it. Was it easier than you thought? Harder? Did you learn anything useful? Will you incorporate the new style into your repertoire? Would you try this exercise again with a different style?

We had a blast reading through last week’s Metaphor and Simile entries, and can’t wait to see what you come up with in another wide-open challenge!

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  1. I happend to post something a few hours ago that is almost exactly what this challeng is requesting–trying something new.

    I’ve done a number of memoir posts, but I challenged myself to tell my life story via the Barbie dolls I dragged out of the attic last week. I wondered if the dolls might tell me something new–something I didn’t realize before.

    Not only have I never done anything llike this before, I don’t know anyone who has. However my post called “My Ken Doll’s Decapitated and my Barbie’s Missing Limbs” amounts to a memoir a la Mattel.

    http://reinventingtheeventhorizon.wordpress.com/2012/10/08/my-ken-dolls-decapitated-and-my-barbies-missing-limbs-a-mafia-memoir-manufactured-by-mattel/

    I will add internal links to the DPchallenge. You can decide if it counts.

    Thanks,
    Kathy

  2. Hi there Michelle, when responding to challenges, I like to write the first thing that pops into my head, with little editing. For some reason, this one just had to be done. It’s a little different because I didn’t spend a lot of time finding the perfect pics, didn’t try to make it something funny like I usually do, and just wrote about a lasting memory that seems so dumb, but I didn’t make it silly. I merely wrote it matter of factly, in for the most part stream of consciousness fashion. Thanks for the challenge!

    http://wp.me/p2BTAP-s2

  3. I normally do photo-blogging and try to follow the Weekly Photography Challenges posted here. However I have been writing posts based on my own experiences for a very long time.
    As such “fiction” is completely out of my comfort zone.
    Recently though I have thought about doing a regular series of short stories based on Hindu Myths.
    I just posted my second short story yesterday and since this week’s writing challenge is about doing something different … I guess that post from yesterday does fit the criteria.
    You can read it here http://bachelorslife.blogspot.com/2012/10/twitterati-mark-and-die.html

    1. Good one Rotten Ray!! Sort of had much the same thought while I was reading the challenge…
      I may well be tempted to include 20 links to some of my posts and call the challenge…. you guessed, 20 Links!! ;-)

  4. I write for me, because I cannot not write.
    I write for my sons and grandsons.
    I write so my grandsons’ children will know a bit about me, from me.
    I write so my grandsons’ will know a bit more about the family that brought them into the world.
    I write for me, because I cannot not write.
    I write for others because sharing my hard earned knowledge.
    I write to defeat a little known learning disability called Dysgraphia.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dysgraphia).
    I write despite the ways Dysgraphia often defeats my best efforts.
    I write for me, because I cannot not write.
    I write because I am 75 and rapidly becoming invisible to many.
    I write because I am 75 but visible as me to the friends I have found blogging.
    I write for me, because writing keeps me strong.
    I write for me, because I cannot not write.

    A poem? Maybe.

    Now off to write to post it with this maybe poem and a picture on today’s blog post that I can also send to my Staying Strong Poems Board on Pinterest. Write on all, it is a path to peace within.

  5. Let’s see..I usually write narratives and personal posts so perhaps I’ll write something informative and structured for this week’s challenge. I’ll probably take on a review or an analysis of something. Will add in the post once I’ve published it. Very excited for this one c:

  6. I used to use my blog to write about various things of interest to me, mostly books. But, a few years ago, I took up photography. Now, most often, my posts are photographs. For this week’s challenge, I wrote about photography instead of posting photos. Any feedback appreciated!

    http://wp.me/p1tzBV-1J8 Ten Things I’ve Learned About Photography.

137 Responses Ready to write? To participate, publish a post on your blog that responds to the prompt. Include a pingback and we’ll list your post below. Learn More