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.