Thursday, December 31, 2009

Fear of the New Year

Just had to share this little comic. If any of you are in need of inspiration or a way to procrastinate on the web, visit Inkygirl 's blog. It's great :D or the comics. If you were part of NaNoWriMo, you might recognize her work.

I identified really well with the comic because sometimes, the world just seems too big. Especially when you're making plans. And what better time to make plans than New Years Eve. So, as you see 2010 unfolding in your imagination, just keep this in mind: if you don't like coffee, there's always hot cocoa via Trish.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Challenge Nineteen: The Gift

Okay, and welcome back from our detour into Nano-Land! I hope everyone did well. Congrats to our own Slinky for winning. And, to any of our new members, welcome and if you partcipated and won, congrats. Your reward: a fanfic challenge, should you choose to accept.

The rules to this lovely, Xmas themed challenge is as follows:

  • Pick one of the fandoms listed below. The characters listed are to be the main focus of the fic you are going to write:

--Harry Potter= Harry Potter and Severus Snape

--Supernatural= Sam Winchester and Dean Winchester

--House, M.D.=House and Thirteen

--Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Angel the Series= Angel and Illyria

--Vampire Hunter D= D and Meier Link

--Castlevania= Alucard and Isaac

--Batman (The Animated Series, the movie franchise, etc.)= Catwoman and Joker

--Stargate: SG-1/Stargate: Atlantis= Sam Carter and Ronon Dex

--Witchblade the TV Series= Sara Pezzini and Ian Nottingham

--Veronica Mars= Logan and Mac

  • Now, after you have made your choice from the list above, you must write a one-shot (a single chaptered work of 500 words or more) in which one of the two assigned characters gives a gift to the other assigned character for Christmas. You must choose one of the following gifts:

--Nutcracker, rose, a cat, handheld blender/mixer, dagger, photograph, stuffed dog, shoes, self help audio book, or a nail file.

  • Deadline for this challenge is December 26, 2009...just to give a little extra time.

Remember, after you have written and posted your story, comment on this post and link us to your story so that we can read it. Have fun!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Challenge Eighteen: Thanksgiving Challenge

Okay, I know that we are all in the midst of NaNo or just finishing up some schoolwork, so this challenge will be simple.

  • Write a poem of any length about Thanksgiving
  • Include at least two of the following prompt words: pilgrims, indians, maize, turkey, Mayflower, sweet potato, hunting, football
  • Due date is Friday, November 27, give you a little more time since I'm posting this so late.

Well, happy writing! We'll be posting more challenges soon enough!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Things to Think About when Writing

Well, I'm taking a few minutes break from NaNoWriMo to talk about a couple of things that have been in my mind while I've beening doing my own mad writing dash through the first five days.

First off, I hope everyone is doing well. And even if you are behind right now, fear not! You can always catch up, regardless of what's going on elsewhere this month. On that note, I've heard one or two out in the NaNo world complain of being stuck in their novel. To them, I offer these suggestions. If you can't think of what's coming next, skip to a part you know. Just leave a little marker or note (notes count as words) to come back after NaNo is done or at the last few days of NaNo when you are still short a couple of thousand words. Also, don't worry about the "whats" of the novel right now. Word count is your primary goal. As it says on the NaNo calendar currently present on my laptop, "Don't have any ninjas? Add some!" Do ANYTHING to get yourself moving again.

I bring this up because I noticed that my output, so far today, has been lower than it has been the last few days. I began to worry that I was stuck...which I thought was impossible, due to my outlines. But, I realized, I was not stuck...I just needed a breather. This could also be the case for those of you who are "stuck." Take a break and come back a little later. Watch some TV, eat something that doesn't have caffeine in it, take a bath/shower, do anything but write. Then, in a couple of hours (or whenever your next section of free time comes that day), try again. That's my plan.

Which brings up another thought I had, even though NaNo is a huge part of our lives in Nov, one must remember to make time to do things that are more relaxing than worrying about word count. Breathers and sleep are important, as well as entertainment activities. And you want to know the upside to this? They'll probably act as inspiration for you novel. In fact, just today in class, I had an idea for something totally minor to mention in my novel, towards the end...but that toally minor mention will still take up word count. Remember, quanity is for Novemeber, quality is for December.

And don't forget to read. It is my personal belief that all authors must be, I don't care what it is that they read, just do it! Books, magazines, news articles, scientific journals, anything! And again, this could act as inspiration.

So, how is everyone feeling about NaNo? Well, one last reminder from me on this subject...just have fun with it! No one is judging you!

Now, on more Guild related matters, I'll be posting up a couple of new challenges...and maybe some informal ones that serve more as recommendations...later this month. Most will have Dec. due dates, with one--a short one!--being due in Nov.! Be on the look out for those!

And, finally, I'd like to thank dear Slinky for keeping us inspired with her daily updates in the upper left corner of our Guild.

Happy NaNoing!

Head of the Department of Backstory
15,917 words

Monday, October 12, 2009

Keyword Density Info for Freelance Writers

Since I'm just now getting involved in the world of freelance writers, and I know a few of my fellow Guild members are interested in online writing as well, I thought I'd post this helpful article on Keyword Density and SEO. How Search Engines actually work is somewhat confusing to the novice. This article breaks down some of the bigger issues facing writers learning about SEO and keywords. I hope a few of you find this helpful.

Keyword Density Not Enough for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

All the social bookmarking in the world will not help you if the search engines can't find your article in the first place. And search engines can't find you unless you speak their language.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

NaNoWriMo: Soon, My Precious, Soon

Smell that, Guild folk? That's the scent of National Novel Writing Month, right around the corner. Sure, it smells a little like jerky, pocky sticks, and spilled soft drinks--but isn't it great? Everyone here should know what NaNoWriMo is. If you don't know, refer to previous posts or go to In fact, one of our active challenges involves NaNoWriMo. And, oh how I plan on tackling that challenge this coming week. I'm hoping this blog serves as a NaNo reminder to Guild members who might like to participate. I know Patricia, Kimmi, and I have already started preparing for our novel writing experience.

I've been trying to get myself inspired. I've written an Associated Content article on the challenge (well, not specifically, but on preparing for NaNo through background stories), and it should be up within a few days.

In the mean time, I thought I might suggest a few activities to keep you motivated while you write your outline for your NaNo novel:
  • You could begin to gather your music playlist for November (thanks, Patrica, for reminding me).
  • Aside from this, the more artistic guild members might want to think about drawing character sketches or gathering celebrity pictures to use as character references.
  • Also, NaNoWriMo has a place to upload your "cover page" under Novel Info, if you'd like to create one for fun.
  • Maps can be your friend. For fantasy writers, draw a map of the areas, blue print the buildings, decide where to place the mudmen in your bog, etc.
  • Make a banner for your novel and put it on your social networking sites or use it in your NaNo signature to advertise your story. Mine is above, obviously :D Here's where you can go to make your own:
  • Make a YouTube trailer. Yeah, I've never made a video before, but this morning at about 2am, I woke up and decided that it would be a good idea. This was the result of that experiment (leave a comment, haha):

or the video below might also work. (Disclaimer: I do not own the music or the photos. Better disclaimer located on YouTube, haha.)

EDIT: Another thing to help prepare and motivate is a calendar. Check out these calendars made by folks in the NaNoWriMo forums:

Friday, October 9, 2009

Fiction Writing: Three Ways to Use the Colors of the Seasons to Describe Setting
How to use color to describe setting and set mood in fiction.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Challenge Seventeen: Trick or Treat!

Okay, it's that time of year again, boys and ghouls! Halloween is upon us. So, in honor of a most fun holiday, here's a challenge!

  • Choose three of the following prompt words: witch, black, howl, ghost, candy, chocolate, zombie, vampire, midnight, blood, gore, fright, screech, scream, tomb, dead, or goblin
  • Write a poem of at least 100 words!
  • The word "Halloween" must appear at least once inside the poem!
  • And finally, the end of the poem must be a "trick" (read: twist or surpise) or "treat" (read: nice; the way everyone would hope for).

Due Date for this challenge is by midnight, Oct. 31...the witching hour! Happy haunting...I mean, writing!!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Challenge Sixteen: The Jeopardy! Challenge

Okay, so this actually has nothing to do with Jeopardy, but it runs something like it's Answer and Question format. This is the Answer Challenge! In the past, we've had several Question challenges, were we would give you selected questions and, through a fandom character, you had to answer that question FOR that character. This time, we're going to flip you on your head.

Because we're all kind of busy this semester, we'll free you up some for this one.

  • Choose any fandom you'd like to write for (for fandom, read: fanfiction)
  • After you've chosen your fandom, choose your main character. This is to whom the answer must apply
  • Then, choose one of the answers below.
  • Using this "answer," in the space of a one-shot (500 word minimum), find the question that applies to this answer for this character.


Because I love him/her.

Because this is my sacrifice.

Because I am evil/good.

Because I live the lie, everyday.

Bonus Points: If you write for a fandom you've never written for before!!

Due: Oct. 28, 2009

Challenge Fifteen: The NaNoWriMo Backstory Challenge

Visit for more information on National Novel Writing Month.

NaNoWriMo. . .What a special time of year! Thousands of writers gathered with one common writing goal--finish a 50,000 word novel in one month's time.

This year, to help all you funky NaNos out there, I propose a challenge before THE Challenge.

As you're plotting, outlining, and forming characters for your NaNo Novel, you can take part in this October challenge. It might help you when you start to write on November 1st.

Pick a character who is going to be present in your NaNoWriMo novel. Every character is full of history. After all, they should have lived a life before the events of your story. So pick an event, a moment in their life, or even a previous adventure they were involved in and write a short story.

  • Character must be present in your future NaNo novel.
  • Story cannot share the same plot as your NaNo novel.
  • 900 wd Minimum, no max
  • Due Oct 31st (In other words, before NaNoWriMo begins.)
  • Post either a link or a short synopsis in the below comments. I realize that, if you're serious about your NaNo Novel, you might not want post your short story on a site like (just in case you need to tweek it after the actual NaNo event has changed your character).
Have fun! I can't wait to see your responses.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Taken down to work on

I took this idea down to work on it.

Reply to Challenge Fourteen

The title of my piece is One Month

My storyline is this: An educational-inspired college camp brings together students from several schools, ranging from grades 9th to recently graduated. For one month, four camp counselers that are summer staff only must, while under the supervision of their five superiors, must help the children with their daytime activities. And at night, after the full-time staff have gone home, they must keep the children under control and under the rules. But with 60 students, all with hormones raging and drama running high, will everyone make it through the summer camp without getting kicked out? Told through the point of view of a camper returning for their second year to a new attendee.

There will be several stories within one large story. The focus will shift as each new story is brought to light. Some stories will be solved quickly, while others might run the length of the main plot.

Okay, my storyline actually gives me a LOT of characters to work with...but here are some of the ones that should be noted:
Jessica Hart- one of the female counselers
Penelope Rayson- one of the female counselers
Michael Madison- one of the male counselers
James Mill--one of the male counselers
Aurora--the camper returning for her second year; has all the "dirt" on the older attendees
Lily-- a first time camper...a bit nervous about going, but makes fast friends with Aurora
Derek-- a fourth year camper, involved in a "love triangle"
Jonathan-- a second year camper, friend of Derek, involved in same "love triangle"
Kate--a first year camper, involved in "love triangle" with Derek and Jonathan
Nala-a second year camper, falling for Edmund
Edmund-- a first year camper, but is his love for Nala true?

Those are some of the examples of the longer running stories throughout the main plot. The artist I chose was the band "3 Doors Down." I will now list the songs I chose from their discography and beside each song, describe the scene in which they will be used.

Train-- The opening number. Play just the music as some of the students are shown loading luggage into their parents' cars and vehicles. Show some parents expressing concern about letting their children go for a month. Start with one of the "lesser used" characters singing the song, cut to several students singing, emphasizing on some of the longer running stories.

The Real Life--Aurora explaining her feelings on wanting to go home her first year, then deciding to stay. She talked about being a bad kid, how the camp has made her better.

Kryptonite--The scene has drifted, after a bit, to Penelope and James. James is talking about how he has missed Penelope. After he begins to express too intimate of feelings--wanting to get back together, having helped her through dark times, etc.--she tells him that she doesn't want anything to do with him like that anymore. James sings Kryptonite.

Loser-- One of the "lesser used" characters sings this. She is being bullied by some of the other campers for being "weird." At the conclusion of her song, she enters the head of the camp's office and tells her that she wants to go home.

Let Me Go-- Kate sings this song. After two, separate, moments with Derek and Jonathan,she sings this song in lament of her "secret" that will inevitably keep her from both of them.

When I'm Gone-- A camper who has recently discovered they have been kicked out sings this, their audience changing from camper to camper. The song bring a much needed worry to the other campers about the things they are up to...this camper has gotten kicked out for all the reasons that they are partaking in.

Behind Those Eyes-- Nala sings this song as she begins to suspect that Edmund's feelings for her are less than true.

She Don't Want the World-- Aurora and Lily take turns singing this song as Nala and Kate go sadly about their daily activities at the camp, after all has been revealed in their stories.

So I Need You-- Edmund sings as he confesses his love, for once and for all, for Nala. At the lyric, "Imitation of my walk" Edmund walks with his shoulders slumped, "sadly." Nala and Edmund take turns singing, Edmund picking back up at the appropriate lyrics.

Your Arms Feel Like Home-- The ending song. Campers say goodbye to one another as they return home to their parents.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Challenge Fourteen: A Practice in Creative Pitching

And we're back with the first of what I'm sure is going to be several challenges to come! Now, this one doesn't require you to post anything anywhere, except here in the comments (or, if it would be easier, in a post all on its own). Now, I personally call this challenge the Musical Challenge, inspired by Mama Mia! Here's the deal:

  • Pick your favorite artist or band. ONLY one artist or band...NOT an artist and a band.
  • Now, use your choice's discography (or discography so far) and choose either 10 songs or a full album.
  • Take those songs, and pitch us a play. Give us the characters (main characters who will have, should you actually want to write it out, several speaking roles...don't worry about minor characters right now). Give us the story (give us the beginning, the high point of the middle, and the end). Give us the setting (just a single setting, like a city or country or something, you don't have to give us every setting that might come into play).
  • And finally, most importantly, tell us about the scenes that will use each of the songs you choose.
  • BONUS: If you detail the choreography, and we're not looking for anything professional here, that would be fun.
  • Due: Oct. 2, 2009

Okay, and just post it here under the comments or make it its own separate Guild post. And remember, just have fun with it!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Sugar Quills: Energy for GFQ Members

These are sold in Gulf Shores souvenir shops. (I have no idea why.) We remembered to get a picture of them this time.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Writing Tip: Use a Bad Situation to Create a Descriptive Scene
Out of writing steam? Perhaps the key to your next writing spill is as close as your last meaty rant about the driver who took your parking space.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

FictionPress.Com Can Be an Amateur Writer's Best Friend is a huge site where writers can post their fiction and poetry for a wide audience. While it has its problems, the pros far outweigh the cons.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Can Writing Fanfiction Improve Your Writing Skills?
Most of today's fanfiction is written by teens and tweens, but can the amateur writer learn anything from this type of pleasure writing? I argue that fanfiction writers can and will learn valuable skills, if they're willing to do the work.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Challenge Thirteen: Underwire Challenge

Ok, Ok, so you've just read the title of this challenge and received a large mental question mark in return. Here's the deal: I watch action and horror movies, most of which are cheesy or simply lack realistic characters. I constantly see girls get into situations where they have "nothing" they can use to fight the bad guy/girl, get out of the trap, save another person. I think that, aside from a brain, the most unused tool at their disposal is just a cup-size away. Think about it (I'm talking to the ladies here--the nondrag guys amongst us will have to use their imagination), the majority of women wear bras, even with formal wear, though many Sci-Fi (excuse me, Syfy) writers would have you think otherwise. And, in turn, the majority of bras have underwire for lift. Now, any woman who's had a cheap bra has felt the stinging end of the underwire and knows its dangers.

Are we forming a picture now?

So, my challenge to you: write a scene, story, script, etc. where a woman or man (be creative, Mr. Kinky Boots) uses their bra in a tight situation for something other than seduction. Specifically, I'd like it to be a very high-action moment, but any creative use will be worth it.

This challenge has no real due date, and, unless it's a piece you're posting online, you won't need to put a link in the comments. Just comment below and tell me a little about the situation you're planning to write about, and how the bra comes into play.

Have fun and, as always, be creative!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Challenge Twelve-- The Murder Challenge

Okay, a new challenge for all! This challenge is original fiction ONLY!!!! The rules are as follows:
  • The idea of this challenge is to help you get a feel for murder in writing and how to implant a murder mystery into other genres.
  • It MUST have "mystery" as a subgenre, but NOT as the main genre! This means that it can be a type of "who dun it?" but that does not need to be the main focus.
  • Has to have a twist at the end, and not necessarily a "who dun it?" twist, remember!
  • Deadline for this challenge is May 6, 2009

Some examples for what the challenge is looking for are books like The Sookie Stackhouse Series, The Harry Potter Series, or the young adult book Never Trust a Dead Man. Happy writing!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Challenge 11--The Song Challenge

Most of us listen to music for inspiration, so it's only fitting that we have a challenge that brings this song inspiration directly into play. Here's the challenge:

  • Shuffle your music player.
  • Use the first song that plays as inspiration for either an original or fanfiction story. The song should influence the atmosphere of your story as well. It's as simple as that! Enjoy!
Now, if that's too simple, here's a little extra challenge to tide you over:


This extra challenge requires you to shuffle your music at least four times.
  • The first song to play should represent your main character's driving motivation or emotional state.
  • The second song should represent your plot.
  • The third song should be your secondary character's driving motivation or emotional state.
  • And the fourth song should represent your setting. (For example, if "Don't Fear the Reaper" was your fourth song, you could set your story in a cemetery, at a school for reapers, at a Blue Oyster's concert, in the seventies, etc.)
The only limit to this challenge is your imagination.

DUE DATE: May 1st, Midnight

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Challenge Ten-- The Question Part III

Okay, this challenge ups the difficulty just a little bit. Here we go!
  • This challenge is fanfiction ONLY!!! (Don't worry, we'll have some original challenges and another fanfiction challenge following this one soon!).
  • Like in the other Questions challenges, you must have your fic answer one of the questions given below.
  • This can be anywhere from a drabble, to a one-shot, to a chapter piece. And, for the added challenge to this one, I'd really recommend a short one-shot. You'll see why in a minute.
  • Now, here's the kicker. Again we have a list of 'verses for you to choose from with an assigned character. But here's where it gets a tad more difficult than the previous Question challenges. You must pick TWO of the 'verses and cross them over. That's right, folks! The Question Part III is a crossover challenge; I guess you could say it is in part a celebration of the new crossover feature at
  • We've upped the number of 'verses to choose from. Here they are with their character assignment:

--Harry Potter= Severus Snape

--Batman: The Animated Series (again, NOT Batman Beyond or Justice League, just the animated series)= Harley Quinn

--Castlevania= Alucard

--Darkwing Duck= Negaduck

--Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood Series= Sookie

--Supernatural= Dean Winchester

--House, M.D.= Cameron

--Vampire Hunter D= Leila

--Star Wars= Obi-Wan Kenobi

--Stargate: SG-1= Daniel Jackson

--Stargate: Atlantis= John Sheppard

--Angel: The Series= Winifred (Fred) Burkle

--Buffy: The Vampire Slayer= Tara Mclay

--Firefly= Kaylee Frye

--Forever Knight= Lucien Lacroix

--Twilight= Alice Cullen

--Legend= Gump

--Labyrinth= Hoggle

--Vampire Knight= Headmaster Cross

--Dark Knight= Rachel

  • As stated above, choose TWO of these 'verses and cross them over. In your fic, you must answer one of the following questions:

--Who are you in bed with?

--Who has tasted your blood?

--What are you doing here?

--What are you thinking right now?

--Aren't you lonely?

--Will they forgive you?

  • Again, the question must apply to your main character. Now, because you have TWO 'verses present, it may apply for one or both.
  • Deadline for this challenge is Tuesday, April 21, 2009 at midnight.

Happy writing!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Which is harder?

Which is harder? Writing a story from scratch where your ideas are new and you know more or less what you want to happen and how you want it to happen. Or. Re-writing an existing story (chapter, part, etc.) where you have things established the way you thought you wanted them only to find out that they didn't work out so now you have to go back and re-do almost everything?
I found myself asking that question last night while I was working on Blue Shadows. I couldn't help but try and discourage myself thinking "well, it was a bit of a flop before, so what's going to be different this time around?" "it was hard to write this part before, why should it be easier now?" "what the hell was I thinking when I wrote this part? how can I fix it?"
I bummed myself out a little bit, I think, but I'm back on the horse and ready to ride.
So, which do you think is harder? Making something from scratch or warming it up in the proverbial microwave in hopes that it was better than the last time?


Friday, April 3, 2009

Challenge Nine-The Question II

This is the sequel to the Question Part I. Same rules, different 'verses/characters and questions. Here goes!

  • This challenge is fanfiction ONLY!!!
  • The character attached to the verse, as before, must be the one to whom the answer of your chosen question applies...preferably, the main character of your piece.
  • This challenge can anywhere from a drabble, to a one-shot. You could even do a chapter piece if you so choose.
  • The verses and characters for this challenge is as follows:

Harry Potter--Voldemort

Batman: The Animated Series (seasons 1-4 NOT Justice League or Batman Beyond)--Catwoman

Sookie Stackhouse books/TrueBlood--Sookie Stackhouse

Supernatural--John Winchester

House, M.D.--Thirteen

Angel, The Series--(Charles) Gunn

Castlevania--Lisa Tepes

Star Wars--Han Solo

Stargate: Atlantis--Major Lorne

Dexter: The Series--Aster

  • The questions to choose from are as follows:

--Why are you such a bitch?

--What the hell was that?

--What do you have to live for?

--Who do you miss the most?

  • As before, other characters may appear, but the listed character must be the main character and, as stated above, the one to whom the answer of the question applies.
  • The deadline for this juicy bit of a challenge is April 11, 2009 by midnight.

Happy writing!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Insperation: Some Babbelings from Kimmi

While working on my Friday the 13th (the 2nd) challenge piece, I came across a weird news article. It seemed like a bit of a god-send that this little six lined article from the Associated Press would show up in my news feed on my Yahoo! account just when I was looking for something to inspire me to write. This little article turned into a 4 page story of misfortune for a poor man who owned a pet store.
Originally, the news story reported the ill fortune of a shop owner who (somehow) wound up with a corpse instead of the fish he had originally ordered. How's that for luck?
When I read the story I at first thought "huh, sucks to be that guy" and clicked off to play on Pet Society. But after a few minutes I went back to my homepage and stared at the article title.
I remembered hearing something clicking into place.
Who was this unfortunate shop owner?
Did he think it was some kind of prank?
Was there anyone there with him when he found the corpse?
What happened to the fish?
Stupid UPS, they screw up everything.
And thus, with those thoughts flying through my head, I copied the article into my beloved OneNote, and set to work.
Thus, "I Blame UPS" was born, and surprisingly, I like it.
It always amazes me how inspiration just kinds of hits you in the face sometimes. Sure, we all have our muses that guide our pens and our thinking. But sometimes, something pushes the muse out of the way and just screams WRITE ABOUT ME!
At least thats how it is for me.
A flickering light, or a shadow that I see out of the corner of my eye: a story about a tortured lover that wants revenge.
An episode of my favorite TV show: a story centered around a guy that is created into some kind of zombi and is forced to protect someone he hates.
I mean, its weird how the smallest thing seems to set off the imagination (especially if you have an over active imagination like I do).
The point of this blog, I think, is to keep your eyes (all three of them) open to inspiration. Take the time to look at something and ask yourself questions, even if they seem silly and pointless. I always find its the pointless questions (such as what happened to the fish?) that gets my creative juices flowing. Inspiration is all around us, we just have to be willing to let it hit us in the face sometimes.
Viva La Quill
The Ink Finger

Monday, March 9, 2009

Guild Weekly Newsletter 3

Greetings, all! We have much to cover in tonight's newsletter! So, let's get right to it!

First of all, challenges. The following is a list of challenges that are currently on going, their deadlines, and the rules of which can be found on previous posts.
  • Challenge 5--The St. Patrick's Day Challenge will end at 12:01 a.m. on March 18, 2009. And kudos to Slinky for the cute kitty pic on the challenge!
  • The Friday the 13th Challenge has been reopened and the rules of which have been reposted under the comments of that post. Deadline: March 13, 2009 at midnight
  • Challenge 6-- The Urban Legend Challenge. Deadline: March 30, 2009 at midnight
  • Challenge 7--The April Fools' Challenge. Deadline: April 1, 2009 at midnight. No foolin'.
  • Challenge 8-- The Sue Slayer Challenge. Deadline: April 16, 2009 at midnight. Kudos to Hillary for contributing this challenge!

Now, I'd like to bring your attention to the upper left hand column of this blog (and if you're reading this on facebook, please visit the blog to find out what the heck I'm talking about). We have a new addition to our little group. The Word Prompt of the Month. This will be present until April 1, at which time the word will change. We encourage all our participants in their challenges to use this word in some way, shape, form, or fashion. It's just a fun way to get your mind flowin'!

Coming up next is a little something us GFQ people are calling The Quillies! It's a little nominate and award thing we're doing seasonally. More information on that when the categories are announced. Be looking for that post on Saturday, March 14. What we have now I can tell you. The nomination dates are from March 13 until March 20. Then, there will be a reading period. Following that, there will be the voting period which will last from March 29 until March 31. The results will be up by April 1.

On a similar note, on our facebook group's discussion board, we'll be posting a little game for all Guildmembers to partcipate in! You can expect it around the same time as the information on The Quillies is released. The game, for a shortened explaination, will consist of a list of quotes from books. The object: in one post, tell what book each quote from...or as many as you can. They won't be obscure quotes, and you definitely won't be expected to get all correct. For each quote correctly identified, you receive one point or Quill Mark. Also, if you're doing the St. Patty's Day Challenge and mention beer will get two Quill Marks. And what will you do with these Quill Marks? Look for the answer for that (and more) in the information on The Quillies!

And, on a final note, I'd just like to say a couple of things about our little group here. First of all, please don't limit yourself to only the challenges. We are a group that is here to read and helpfully respond (and by this I mean, critique) to any bit of writing you want us to look at. All you have to do is ask. The challenges are just to help for extra output and to get the muses flowing. Further on this...we are here to read each others works. If someone does a challenge and posts it. If they email you something they want you to read, read it and email back. Otherwise, this group is pointless. We must work together, or we won't work at all. To this end, I invite all of you to start emailing each other work to be critiqued or to ask for reviews on any posted works.

Now, I hope we all have fun on these new and exciting things to come!

Until next time,


Department of Backstory

Viva la Quill

Challenge 8--The Sue Slayer

MARY SUE!!! Run! For the sake of all that is good and half-way decent, run, fool, run!

The inventor of this particular challenge was Hillary. *bows*

For all those reading, if you don't know what a Mary Sue is, you should really google her. A quick definition of Mary Sue would be a character who is too perfect or too anti-perfect for her/his own good; usually said character captures the affections of all other characters around her/him and becomes the main focus of all things within the story. Have a character who is part elf, part vampire, part angel and has four lovers competing for her love...well, then, you have a Mary Sue. It's an uber Sue if you gave her lavendar eyes, turquoise hair, and a banging body she's not aware of. The Mary Sue is traditionally an original character written by fanfiction writers but the term has recently evolved to include characters in original fiction.

Due Date: April 16th

Writing Type: Fanfiction

Length: No word limitations.

So, for the challenge you can:

  • Write for a Sue without fear. This means that you write for a Mary Sue without fear of being flamed. This doesn't mean that you won't be flamed by reviewers, however. But it could be fun to indulge in the life style of the perfect :)
  • Be on the receiving end of a Sue. Write as a canon character being faced with a Sue or an original character who runs into a Sue.
  • Kill a Sue. Fun, fun, fun.

As usual, post your links in the comments below. Have fun!

Challenge Seven- The April Fools' Challenge!

Here's a Cha, cha, cha...Challenge for you! (And please ignore the 05 on this's not mine, all rights to the creator of it...and it was done in '05).

  • This challenge may be either for original or fan fiction.
  • Must be at least 100 words.
  • Now, write a drabble, one-shot, or even a whole story if you'd like about either an April Fools' Day prank that went horribly wrong or went too right. The prank MUST have either just happened--like the day before or some other such close timing--or is happening as the story progresses.
  • Must use at least TWO of the following prompt words: clown, pie, flower, joke, dirty, monkey, squirt, jester, bells, jingle, dance, or stink.
  • The deadline is of course, April 1 at midnight. And please, no pranks about if you did it or not...we will know...haha.

Have fun!!!

Challenge 6--The Urban Legend Challenge

Inspired by Patricia's class assignment, we bring you Challenge 6, The Urban Legend Challenge.

Writing Type: Original fiction only.

Due Date: Midnight, Monday, March 30th.

Length: 1000+ words.

The Challenge: Take an innocent urban legend and do with it what you will!!! Muhahaha. Anyhow, this challenge focuses on rewriting an urban legend into a fiction story. This means that the urban legend needs to be the FOCUS of the story, not simply mentioned in the context. If you don't understand the assignment, see Patricia's story "A Bridal Affair"

Need Help?: Try wikipedia or (nothing but urban legends).

Have fun with this guys!

Reopening Now: Slinky's Friday the 13th Challenge

That's right, folks! I'm offically reopening Slinky's challenge made back in January for Friday the 13th, in honor of yet another of those wonderful days coming up! That's right, this friday is another 13th, so you have until midnight that night to complete your challenge! See Ariyana's orginal post for rules and guidelines. Post your links to your posted works on this comment!

Happy writing and viva la quill!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Challenge 5--St. Patrick's Day!

With less than two weeks to St. Patrick's day, it's time to lay out your green t-shirts and draw inspiration from the wee folk! Let me present Challenge 5, The St. Patrick's Day challenge. Now this is going to be a very loose challenge. Your options are

  • Fiction or Poetry (including song)
  • Original Fiction or Fanfiction

Here's the challenge. By 12:01 am, March 18th (just so the deadline can fall on Hillary's birthday), you must have a work of at least 100 words written. Your restrictions are as follows:

  • Must involve St. Patrick's Day, if only in setting or mention.

  • Must include one of the following prompts: shamrock, irish music, snake(s), corned beef, leprechaun. Now, these prompts can either be the subject of the story/poem or simply a word used in the poem. These prompts were headings listed under the symbols and traditions of St. Patrick's Day article at Check out the site for inspiration, if you need it. ( )

  • Must include the word GREEN. Or you'll be pinched. The word can be in the title, text, or the letters hidden at the beginning/end of lines (in the case of poetry).

BONUS POINTS: Go to any participant who uses a BEER reference... (I don't know what you'll be doing with these points. Perhaps they'll come in use during the Quillies.)

Have fun! And don't forget to leave a link to your story or an update on your work in the comments section.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Guild (Sometimes) Weekly Newsletter 2

February was Black History Month and March reflects on the female writer. In order to usher out the old and bring in the new, here's a quote by Alice Walker (The Color Purple):

Deliver me from writers who say the way they live doesn't matter. I'm not sure a bad person can write a good book, If art doesn't make us better, then what on earth is it for.

Over the past few weeks, Guild Members have been busy writing their fingers to the bones in order to finish challenges and expand their writing horizons. . .

Saturday Feb. 28th, Challenge Three (The Hate Challenge) closed its vengeful doors. Participants included Patricia, Ariyana, and Droo. Both Patricia and Ariyana posted both original fiction and fanfiction drabbles for this challenge. The floor is most definitely open to any members who would like to post challenges related to repressed feelings.

REMEMBER! Fanfiction writers, and other daringly experimental writers out there, Challenge Four (The Answer Challenge) still has another week left and will be closing for good on March 8th (Patricia's Birthday--be sure to send a card or an anonymous cookie). Keep in mind that this challenge is for short story fanfictions and has a specific list of guide lines. Patricia, Ariyana, and Kimmi have already responded to this challenge, but everyone is welcome to try their hand at a second short story, if the muses allow. Also, those not participating in this challenge may still want to take a look at the question portion of the guidelines for inspiration in their poetry and original fiction works.

Coming Up!

  • The St. Patrick's Day Challenge
  • The Mary Sue Challenge
  • The Reading Challenge
  • The Quillies (Fiction, Poetry, and Fanfiction Awards)
  • A new Guild website address
  • A new forum for the Guild at
More information on upcoming challenges and events to come.

Please keep in mind that the floor is open to any members who would like to set new challenges for the Guild. Also, all members are encouraged to participate in challenges and to review challenge responses, if at all possible.

Happy Writing! And Viva La Quill.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Guild Weekly Newsletter 1

For sake of loading down your inboxes, here's our newsletter! Mainly, just some recaps.

First, about our challenges. Actually, our first challenge was Ariyana's Image Challenge. We're calling this Challenge Zero. Technically, it's still up for grabs. You can ask her for a deadline, if you'd like.

Next, our Challenge One was our Valentine's Day challege, which ended yesterday at Midnight. Congrats to myself, Ariyana, and Kimmi, who all put forth a response. Let's keep it up!

Following that, we had Challenge Two, which was our Friday the 13th Challenge. It ended at midnight Friday, obviously. Congrats to myself and Ariyana for completing it.

Currently, we have two challenges going. We have Challenge Three, which is our Hate Challenge. See the post for specific details. However, note that the deadline is Feb. 28 at midnight. Myself and Ariyana have already completed responsed, both of the fanfiction and original fiction variety. I look forward to seeing more from our memebers!

Our second current challenge is Challenge Four, dubbed the Answer Challenge. Once again, see post for details, but the deadline is March 8, by midnight. Currently, no one has responded.

Now, I'd like to officially open the floor to all our members to set challenges. I only ask that you keep them numbered so we know what challenge we're responding to.

Now, we currently have a facebook group, started by Kimmi. The link is here:
We also have a fictionpress forum, whose link is here:
Soon, we'll also have a forum, started by yours truly, but I haven't been able to get around to it right at the moment.

Well, that's all for this week's newsletter. Welcome to a few new members we have on our facebook group, by the way! Happy Writing!

~Patricia, of the Guild Department of Backstory

Friday, February 13, 2009

Challenge Four

This challenge was a joint effort of myself and Ariyana. This one is getting a bit more complicated. Here goes!

  • This challenge is fanfiction ONLY!!
  • Choose from ONE of the following fanfiction universes (here on referred to as 'verses). You MUST use the character adjoining the 'verse on this list as your main character.

'Verse List with Character:

Harry Potter--Hermione Granger


House M.D.-- Dr. James Wilson

Buffy the Vampire Slayer-- Tara

Angel the Series-- Doyle

Firefly-- Wash

Supernatural-- Sam Winchester

Darkwing Duck-- NegaGosalyn

Stargate SG1-- Cameron Mitchell

Stargate Atlantis-- Dr. Jennifer Keller

  • After you have chosen your 'verse with its character, then choose from one of the following questions.

--What do you have to live for?

--Does it hurt?

--Who do you miss the most?

--What is power?

  • In a drabble (100 words to about 1000) to a one-shot (1000 words and up), answer the question, using that character in any way you want. Just so long as you answer the question, it works.
  • Other characters may, of course, appear in the story, but the one given MUST be the focus of your story and to whom the answer of the question applies.
  • Deadline for getting Challenge Four (aka The Question Challenge) done is March 8, 2009 by midnight. My birthday!!!

Happy writing! Once again, Slink or I will recap all this challenge business in the Newsletter. Oh, and post what you're doing in the comments for this post, including the link once you're done.

Challenge Three

With challenge two coming to a close and challenge one coming to a close at the end of tomorrow, I propose a new challenge. Here it is, Challenge Three or The Hate Challenge!

Since our valentine's challenge implied love, here's a challenge about hate.

  • This challenge can be original fiction or fan fiction.
  • It must be from 100 words to 400 words ONLY! Now, I know at, they count the divider line thingy as words. Don't worry about that. If, at either site, this happens, just mention it when you post here.
  • You must use two prompt words from the following list: Freud, ego, genocide, figgy pudding, class, stupid, fire, passion, red, heat
  • efforts to keep the blog page here clean and nifty, when you decide what you're going to do, post it under the comments her. As well as a posting a link when you're done.
  • The deadline for this challenge is Feb. 28, 2009 by midnight.

Happy writing! We'll do a recap of the challenges past and the upcoming ones in the Guild Newsletter Post Sunday night.

Darkside Daughter

Yes. That's right. That's a working title for my new project. Not going to mention much about it, just in case I fizzle. But I think its an intresting start. Bwahahahahahahahahahah.
Happy Friday the 13th! <3

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Friday the Thirteenth Challenge Response

Well, I had an original fiction one planned...and I'm still going to do's just not going to be done in time. However, here's my fanfiction answer! It's set in Angelverse. Please review! It's called "Goddess Sized Mistake." Prompts used were "Frigg" and "Witch."

A Call to Arms...Quills...

Well, it's officially Friday the Thirteenth. A reminder...the challenge is due in by midnight! I'll do another post here in a moment to post a link to mine!

Now, the real reason for this post is thus: Over the years, the Guild has had varying degrees of success. Sadly, it's had less success than what it should. I call for a revamp. I say, we--and I mean, all Guildmembers--post challenges (with deadlines, rules, and the like) and set goals. For example, Ariyana and I have both set a goal for the end of this semester. She intends to have 50 fanfictions started before she graduates. I plan to have 100 before the end of this semester. I call on my fellow guildmembers to make similiar goals. Kimmi, you have two fanfics...hit a goal for ten by the end of the semester, why don't ya? This will get everyone's creative juices flowing! And Savvy, you don't have any, but...why don't you start an account and aim for like...five? And we can make similiar goals for our fictionpress accounts too.

Also, I'm officially calling back into existance the Guild Weekly Newsletters. Every Sunday night, either Ariyana or myself will post a weekly newsletter for the Guild. Let's get this group moving again! Let's encourage new members (*cough* Hillary *cough* Alisha *cough*). Let's everybody post challenges and actively compete in them! I know we can find a balance between schoolwork, work, and our personal lives if we just try.

So what do you say? The glove's been laid down. Who accepts?

On a final note, great going to those of us who've posted a challenge response. Let's keep it up!

Kimmi's V-Day

Welllllll I've started on the V-Day challenge. A Harry Potter fanfic... link would be
Sooooo let me know. More to come, I just had to upload the intro before Slink and Trish killed me. heheh

Monday, February 9, 2009

Slinky's Response to the V-day Challenge

Well, I completed my Valentine's Day challenge. It came in around 800 words. I was actually planning another story entirely, but this fell out. It's called "His Valentine," and it's after Deathly Hallows. Narcissa visits a grave on Valentine's Day. I know, I'm so depressing. That's what happens when you're single on Valentine's Day. R&R is much appreciated.

Oh, and by the way, the pairing is only slight. It's Narcissa and Remus from the Potterverse.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Friday the 13th Challenge Response

OK, so I have a response to my challenge up. This one is fanfiction for Buffy the Vampire Slayer called "Lucky Charm." It's a little moment between Xander and his ex-demon girlfriend Anya. Word prompts used were “knight,” “witch,” and “flood(ing).” And my luck topic is, well, obvious. Reviews would be great. Here's the link:

I also plan on trying to do an original fiction short story for this challenge, too, if I have time. I'll edit this blog and post that link as well, if I get around to it.

I can't wait to see if anyone else responds to this challenge :) I plan on doing the Valentine's Day Challenge as well. It should be fun.

Monday, January 26, 2009

My Response to the V-Day Challenge

I'll be writing for House, M.D. The pairing will be various, both of the romantic and friendship varieties. I'll link to it when I write it!

Slinky's Friday the 13th Flash Fiction Challenge

I hope everyone participates in the V-day challenge. If I remember correctly, last time we had a Valentine's FanFiction Challenge, several of us were very successful. Well, since the V-day challenge doesn't necessarily have to be very long, I've decided to take advantage of another striking day: Friday the 13th.

Due Date and Time: Midnight, Friday February 13, 2009


  • Your mission, if you choose to accept it (and you better), is to complete by midnight on the 13th a piece of flash fiction. Flash fiction, by my loose definition, is between 101 and 5000 words.
  • The story should involve in some way Friday the 13th lore (check at Wikipedia for more info), bad luck, or the actual date "Friday the 13th".
  • The story can be either original fiction or fanfiction.
  • It must contain at least two of these promp words: witch(es), devil, Norse mythology, Frigga, Judas, knights, black, Babel, flood, accident, or paraskavedekatriaphobia.

This challenge can take as little as twenty minutes to complete, but please be creative!

When you finish, post a comment with a link to the story and tell us what prompt words you decided to use.

I See Your Challenge to Make a Challenge...

And raise you a Valentine's Day Fanfiction challenge! This is for me and all my guildmembers! ALL our guildmembers! Here it is:

Due Date and Time: Midnight, Saturday February 14, 2009

Limits (?): Minimum is a 100 word drabble or poem. If a poem, it MUST be a FANFICTION poem. The Maximum is...well, the sky's the limit!

Actual Challenge: Pick a fandom, any fandom. Harry Potter, Batman, Twilight, Castlevania...if it's on, it's up for grabs. Then, pick a pairing (or, as we call it in fanfictionland, a "ship"). Any pairing you want. And then...write a valentine's story with that pairing and post it on by the deadline. And you MUST either set your plot on or around Valentine's Day or mention, at least once, something to do with Valentine's Day lore. For example, cupid, flowers, candies in a heart-shaped box, etc.

Please post what ship and what fandom you'll be writing for here on the guild, that way if it is a fandom that one of us doesn't know anything about, we can ask before we review it.

I'm asking for maximum turn-out. Please, don't disappoint the Trishy. Every time a Trishy is disappointed, a cute, fluffy kitten dies.

I'll post my challenge response details here within a day or two. Happy fan-ficcing (or ficking...whichever way you think it should be spelled.)

Dude, Where's My Challenge?

OK, this isn't an official Guild post. It's more of a reminder. The Guild will be hosting challenges in the future. I, myself, have a few in mind, but I'd also like to hear some challenge ideas from other people. So, here is your mission. Think of a writing challenge of some sort. Nothing too extreme (this isn't NaNoWriMo, people), but something simple that would be creative.

Perhaps you think it would be cool to get inspiration from a specific song? Or there's a plot idea you want to see explored further? That's what I thought.Got a challenge in mind? Now, think it through and post it. If you want, post another image challenge.

I'm dying for a good challenge. So go do it already. Post.