Writing challenges – what to do?
There are a ton of writing challenges in the world. It can be hard to figure out which writing challenges to start or what to even do with them. Here I’ve collected a few of them, to introduce you to some of the different formats.
Are you familiar with these writing challenges?
National Novel Writing Month is a global phenomenon within the world of creative writing. In short, everyone can really set their own goals but the standard goal is to write 50,000 words in one month. Most people use the challenge to work on their current novel or idea. Others aim for starting and finishing a whole new piece of work. There are a lot of ways to go about it, but one thing is certain – you wont be alone!
Read more about NaNoWriMo on their official website here>>
Writing prompts are typically smaller writing challenges. It can be one word or a simple sentence that you draw inspiration from and then just write. Some people like to use monthly writing prompt challenges, like the ones I’ve made a few of. (Like my summer writing prompt challenge). Others find a new prompt every day or whenever they feel like it.
If you want to know more about writing prompts, I explain the concept a bit more in detail here>>. You could also just throw yourself into using writing prompts and maybe even start by looking at writing prompts from my writing collection. If that isn’t enough for you, I’ve collected plenty of writing prompts on my Pinterest board.
Write every day for a year
There are some writing challenges, where it’s not about something specific like with writing prompts. You don’t have to write on the same story every day either. If you want to make writing a habit and something you do every day, this type of challenge might be right up your alley.
As an example, my sister Louise chose a writing challenge where she had to write every day for a year. In its essence, you have to write between 1-365 words a day, but never the same amount of numbers. So if you wrote 86 words today, you couldn’t write 86 words another day because you’d used that number already. It’s pretty fun. You could also just aim to write something every day, no matter what it is. Maybe you want to commit to writing 200 words per day for a month? There are so many opportunities here and you can adapt the concept to fit into your daily life and routines. Just get to work! I’m sure you can find variations of this type of writing challenges online. Maybe some that other writers are currently doing. You could find a writing Buddy and support each other in completing a challenge?
BONUS: Writing competitions
As an extra feature, I chose to include writing competitions too. It’s not really writing challenges, but then again it sort of is. There is a goal, a deadline and a concept outline to follow for most writing competitions. Maybe you are the kind of writer who needs a purpose with what you’re working on. If that’s the case, writing competitions could work better for you than e.g. writing prompts. There are pros and cons of all the different types of writing competitions, and remember you don’t have to send anything in if you don’t feel like it. But, if you’re going to write a short story anyway, you might as well consider using the competition guidelines as inspiration. If you choose to apply with your story, the worst that could happen is that you win, right? Not that bad at all.
Just remember that not all competitions aren’t created equal, so please do some research on the guidelines of the competition. Remember to weigh effort versus potential outcome if you win – you should get a good deal too!
There are endless amounts of different kinds of writing challenges. There are so many to choose from, that it can be overwhelming to pick one to start with. My advice to you is to try a few different ones and find out what inspires and works for you. Writing should be fun, for the most part, and a challenge could serve as extra motivation to actually get something down on paper.
It’s just a matter of getting started and trying your best at creating a lot. In a year you’ll be able to look back at what you’ve written and see how much you’ve grown!
Have you tried any writing challenges or used writing prompts to practice your creative writing?
Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below, I can’t wait to hear from you!
If you want to dive into more writing challenges, tips and exercises, find my collection of writers’ resources here>>