Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Writing Challenge

Classes officially start tomorrow. 15 credits (5 classes) + working + xc practice 2 hours a day + meets on the weekends = my crazy life. However! I thrive under pressure. Really, I do. My body might not appreciate me, but my mind loves it. I'll be honest, I love to learn.

That being said, I met with one of my English professors today. It was...educational. He gave me a challenge. I hated him a little for saying it, but I have decided to accept.

Essentially, he told me if I am serious about writing, I need to learn self-discipline.
What does that mean? It means carving out an hour of my day strictly devoted to writing. He said that writing isn't about talent, it's about discipline. Yikes. He also said if I'm serious about grad school (being a student even longer. Ahh), I need to try to get stuff published (unfortunately, blogs don't count). I've recently discovered some sweet magazines that few people know about (Hipster? Possibly. Aha). They're interested in creativity with no boundaries. That's my kind of thing. So I'll write things for them, send it in, and NOT be disappointed when it isn't published. I've also found a whole magazine filled with upcoming writing contests and deadlines, most of the due dates are in October. I have some time. I'll write stuff for a few of those too. Granted, English Ph. Ds and MFAs will also be submitting, but who's comparing? At least I'm writing. That's all that matters.

So. I really do have to blog every day (well, he said 5 days a week). I have to prove to myself I can do it. NO EXCUSES!

1 hour. 5 days a week. Goal set.

So this is where you, my lovely readers, come into serious consideration. You are the lucky ones who get to enjoy the growing pains of this undertaking. I will definitely keep you all in mind.

The number one rule in writing: Know your audience.

So let's think about this:

Q: Who is my audience?
A: Mostly my friends and family, because they're the one's who actually care about me, and are interested in me as a person, even if my writing is...well...only so-so (for now).

However, I do have a few followers that I have never met personally. This excites me because you lovely readers don't know me. Therefore, you will judge me based only on my writing (that is, if you actually do read what I write). I hope you do judge me. Better yet, give me feed back. Be mean, I can handle it. I will reply to every single comment. Opinions matter to me. Every. Single. One.

Q: What will I write about?
A: Now, before I answer this, I know most people are super visual, and reading can get monotonous. Honestly, I don't know how many pictures I'll be able to add. Still, I'll do my best to keep you all interested, invigorated, and at the edge of your seats. Ah, well, something like that anyway. Whatever you do, just DON'T GIVE UP ON ME!

I'm going to write about a lot of things. Basically, things that interest me. Namely, myself. Haha. But not just me, more importantly, how I see life. I think this is the easiest way to find a clear voice. I will characterize myself. I will also be writing short stories for the contests/magazines. However, those will probably pop up under the "my work" tab, not on the main feed.

Q: What will happen if this doesn't happen?
A: I don't know. It's not an option.

I mean, really? Come on, this will happen. I'm a runner, I know how this kind of thing works. It's called endurance. 

Also note, I may not publish everything I write on my blog. So if it looks like I'm slacking, I'm probably not. I'll just post a bigger document on the "my work" tab when I'm done with the final product. Or, I might just not publish it here at all.


Additionally, I like to write memoirs. In the past they have been light, humorous (i.e.: What it Takes and Paneradise). Maybe in the future I'll get a little more serious. Also, if you know me, you could possibly show up in my writing. I hope you don't mind. I just wanted to give a heads up.

You may be thinking this is really cute. Aw, she wants to write every day. She wants be published in magazines. Like that will actually happen. 

Good. I hope you are. I am here to prove you all wrong. The lower your expectation is for me, the more I can impress you. And let's be honest, obviously, you don't know me. If I know there is a greater purpose for this, and if I say I'm going to do this, I sure as hell will. Starting tomorrow and ending sometime in December. I'll be studying in China next semester so I don't want to commit to something if I'm not sure I'll have access to a computer the whole time.   

I'll post what I've written on Facebook and Twitter every now and then; probably when I'm exceptionally impressed with what I've written. I won't let you down, this will be fun. And even when it's not fun, even when I hate myself for getting up an hour earlier, and writing for you, I'll do it. I'll do it because I love you all, because this benefits all of us, and because I have this sneaking suspicion you, Professor Cline, and the rest of the world see me as some kind of funny little joke and I need to prove that this is serious business! Haha. I'm a nutcase.

I'll be posting bright and early.

Most sincerely your dedicated writer,


“The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who’ll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up & get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part & a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you." ~ Chuck Close


  1. I love writing too, I love Jesus and someday I also hope to love to I'm very eager to follow you. I will be rooting for you, encouraging you and following you (but not in a stalkerish way). God bless you on your journey!

    1. Thank you! Thank you!! Thank you!!! This excites me very much. I'm not just saying that, it really does. Running is great, it's really hard sometimes, like writing, but you just gotta get yourself out there and do it!

  2. Love that quote lady! chuck Close is a great photographer! :) I'm excited to journey with you.

    1. Thank you Carissa!! I like that quote too. :) :)

  3. Danae! I'd like to join in on your challenge. Last week of school in May, Brent gave me the same challenge or at least, instructed me to make sure I write every day. The first month and a half I did so good, but then I got caught up in the circumstances around me and forgot to discipline myself. However, as Fall has come round again, I've decided I need to get back into writing daily. Maybe we can keep each other accountable. Or at least encourage one another? Even critic each other's work? Let me know what you think!
    Also - what magazines are you aiming to send your work into?

    1. Yes!!! I would love that!! Seriously, that would help so much. I am following your blog via email. I've been reading everything you post. I'll be sure to leave comments and give you my thoughts! And I will also post about the magazines I'm going to write for too. Thanks Christiana :)

    2. Yay, awesome:) I will do the same. I'm excited to see where your pieces will go and what stories you'll share/tell!

  4. Brownie points for the Chuck Close quote! I like writing - I'll pop in every once in a while :)