The August Challenge . . .

Public school in our district starts on TUESDAY, AUGUST 15TH. This is very soon. Before that date, I need to do 1,000,000 things including sit on the shores of Bear Lake and drink lemonade. Also, clean out an office for myself. Also also, get lots of people ready for school etc. It’s a busy time. After August 15th, it will not be so busy (hahahahahahahahaha!!! A girl can dream, right?).

Going on that time assumption, here’s what we propose: On August 15th the challenge begins.

What: Write for one hour a day. The end.

How: Buy this thing. Or buy this. Or maybe just set your kitchen timer. Or let your kids watch one hour long episode of Paw Patrol (please don’t do this). You figure it out but you must make time, ONE HOUR, every single day except Sundays. We will do this until September 15th.

Where: Your writing space. You might say, I don’t have a writing space. I need to prepare a writing space. I say, you have fifteen days to prepare a writing space. You have fifteen days to get your life in order so that you can devote one beautiful hour to deep and true writing. You have fifteen days to buy the white board, to get your sticky notes, to go do research in Alabama or Armenia.

But: No buts.

What about: During the writing hour, you are not allowed to look at any social media. You are not allowed to do any internet research. You are not allowed to read email or talk to friends or eat loads of popcorn. You may suck on a jolly rancher or perhaps a fire ball. You may have a drink but not if it’s going to cause you to go to the bathroom. If you do go to the bathroom, you must add that time to the hour. You are not allowed to clean your space. You are not allowed to look out the window and think about what groceries you are going to get at Smiths Food King. You can’t even think about why Smiths Food King is Called Smiths Food King unless the character in the book is thinking that.

Who: This is you. Only you. You can invite your friends to do it too. You could even have them over for the hour ONLY IF YOU DO NOT TALK for sixty minutes. This is your month of one hour-a-day production.

Perhaps: Yes, if you want, you could stretch it to one hour and sixty minutes. It’s been said that’s a good chunk of time for deep thinking. This will be deep writing. But at the very least, sixty minutes.

Prepare: By writing it on your calendar. By taking time to figure out what you’re going to work on each hour. By ending your chapter in the middle so you know where you’re going to start.  By outlining. By practicing self control and maybe starting early. By telling friends and family and pets that you need one hour.

Reward: If you do the August challenge every single day and I hope hope hope I do, you will receive a certificate that says you did it and a very good feeling. We also might have a dinner where we celebrate, read stuff we wrote, talk to each other, feel a little bit awkward, stop feeling awkward, eat more stuff, maybe write, perhaps go lay on the grass afterwards and for sure feel really happy.

Who would like to do this? Let us know. August 15th, friends. The clock is ticking.


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21 responses to “The August Challenge . . .

  1. LoriAnne Spear

    I’m in!!

  2. Rachel Coleman

    Doing it! Starting tomorrow because I can.

  3. Michelle Stimpson

    I’m in and I’m doing the Paw Patrol thing and I don’t want to be judged for it. P.S. I don’t think you’re actually judging me on the Paw Patrol thing. (Are you?)

  4. I’m in! I’ve been letting my writing go lax since finishing the first draft on my book. I need to get back into it so I can get the darn thing finished.

  5. angelamillsap

    I’m doing this!

  6. Kelsey Mills

    Work starts for me August 15th but I’m in! It’ll force me to start the school year routine off right! 🙂

  7. Meg

    I’m in, too! I’ll have to be a little creative for the first week since school for us starts on the 21st. But, this is exactly what I need to push me!

  8. benschwensch

    Determined to reshuffle the order of some chapters of my YA fantasy, I gave myself two challenges for July: Do some (or ALL) of my words on the site, at a minimum of 750 words per day. Then I also signed up for the July Camp NaNoWriMo. Ended up with my full story at 70,534 words. NOW I need to do some drastic rewrites on some chapters, so YEAH, COUNT ME IN ! ! !

  9. Cheryl Christensen

    I am in! I am buying my new laptop tomorrow so I can be portable and find a place to be alone.

  10. Sarah

    I’m doing this. I need a (figurative) kick in the pants.

  11. Travis Rawlings

    Sounds great! I’m in.

  12. A day late, but I’m in! 🙂

  13. Thank you for this challenge! For three months, I’ve been trying to set this goal for myself, but have only succeeded thrice (had to use that word!)

    I’m in, two days late, if you’ll allow me. I promise to make up the first two days. 🙂

    Best of success to everyone.


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