July 2019 Writing Challenge Reflection and (Minor) Blog Update

For the month of July I engaged in a writing challenge in which I wrote something everyday in response to these daily prompts. Though the real challenge was using the prompts to write a single, cohesive narrative with each of the daily prompts guiding where the story went.

When I started writing the first installment, I wasn’t sure what the story was going to be. I ended-up writing about someone dealing with weird dreams and insomnia and, as a result, the story went-off from there. When I was thinking about doing this challenge, the expectation was that I was going to write something that was more comedic and “random” given the nature of the challenge. And, also, I thought I would have more fun writing. But, of course, things turned-out differently and I ended-up writing something more dramatic and grounded in reality. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the process of writing became more of a slog as I worried more about the quality of each post as I was writing something more “serious.” As a result, I ended-up procrastinating most days which negatively impacted the story.

Some days were pretty difficult, especially in the last week in which I was working near 12-hour workdays. So when I got home from work, I wasn’t exactly in the best headspace to write something “decent.”

However, overall, I’m glad I did it. It helped me really sit down and write something everyday. And, sometimes, it was fun to write. However, I’m not sure if the final product is something people would want to read. There are some installments that I think came out well. Not great writing, but hints of something that, perhaps, I could expand upon in future projects. One thing I probably should have done better (on top of a bunch of other things) was the way I handled some of the other characters. The story ended-up being insular to the main character, which makes sense given what the story is about, but I wished I fleshed-out the rest of the cast more such as his parents and Burt Romero. The latter is the main character of a web fiction series I’m planning, but his character ended-up being really one-dimensional. The only time he became alive was in one of the dream sequences.

So, I might do a more in-depth retrospective later, or not. But I might end-up revisiting some of the ideas I explored here. So, I guess, overall, doing this whole challenge was more beneficial to me, as a writer, then to the reader.

But, if you’re still interested in reading feel free to click on the link here. I was thinking about doing another one for this month, but by the time I finished I was like “fuuuuck no, I need some rest.” But, I might do something like this again in the future.

I’m either going to start on The Great Romero (the web fiction series I’ve been planning) or another project I have in mind. I’ve also been thinking about uploading posts on non-writing topics such as philosophy, politics, and art. So continue reading or not bye.

The Insomniac Dreams | Small Structures – Ep. 01

This month I will be attempting something different. Using these writing prompts, I will try to write something every day for the month of July. However, instead of writing a story each day, I’m instead going to be trying to write a single, cohesive narrative in 31 parts using each of the daily prompts. Will this work? Probably not. But it might be fun. Or not. Anyway, below is the first installment, inspired by today’s prompt “day seven.” I kind of struggled with this (always a good sign) and I have no idea where this story is going to go (an even better sign.) Also, Small Structures is currently the working title. 


 

It hovered above the bough, eyes crawling along my skin. A small, unblinking face of some sort of marsupial, its gaze large and yellow. We were both frozen, and afraid, watching each other for a time that couldn’t be named. But then, something changed. A twitch, and the creature’s glance disappeared into shadow. All that I had left was the old, yellow tree that the creature had once resided. The tree stood before me, branches twisted and intertwined. I approached and gently pressed my fingers against its trunk, feeling crevices and contortions that held centuries of time. And with this touch I was brought back.

The room was still dark. Underneath the covers, my body coated with sweat. I turned to my side and pinched my eyes shut, but my mind still swayed. Dreams had often come at me, especially at times of anxiety, enveloping each hour with their strange demands. I knew they posed no meaning; yet, their images were thrust upon me, calling for my attention, as if they broken animals desperate for something I only had.

But I had little time for such things. Tomorrow was going to be busy, and I needed the sleep. God, I wasn’t looking forward to it. Sitting in traffic, pressed tightly against the other cars as warm air hissed through my A/C. Tomorrow was going to be day seven of what the local news called a “blistering heat-wave.” I squeezed and softened the pillow, and tried resting my head against it. There was also the fact that I could be fired tomorrow. I sighed, tried to swipe the thought away. I was being too melodramatic, I hoped. Soon, the minutes dissolved and my mind fell back into its own hidden world, one whose shadow would linger until the morning light pierced through the window.