I had worked the same summer job since I was sixteen years old. It was an okay job, and it took me from high school to college to career life, though it was not my career. Seven weeks of the summer (not counting the many training dates before hand) I worked with elementary age children, originally as junior counselor but eventually working up to assistant director. I planned crafts, drew pictures for them to color, played gym games with them, drew the summer calendar, and so much more for nine years and got paid enough to just barely scrape by the summer. It wasn’t worth it, so this year I decided that I wasn’t going to be returning. I was going to stay home and finish writing my book.
Ironically, I had started the book the same year I started working that summer job. Two years ago, I submitted it to six agents knowing that it’d would probably take more than six attempts to get a bite. When all six agents sent back the exact same response, “The beginning is too slow,” I realized the book wasn’t ready to be published yet. I printed out the four hundred page manuscript, opened my purple pen, and began working through the story line by line. I decided to scrap the first chapter, a chapter that had survived seven previous drafts, condense its information to a single page at the beginning of the second (now first) chapter, and the rest of the book was essentially rewritten. All that I have left to do is go back, correct any grammatical errors or minor plot holes, and it will be ready to be sent out again.
It doesn’t sound like much work, until I break it down like this: sixty-three chapters, three hundred twenty seven pages, two hundred thirty two thousand nine hundred eighty four words. As if that isn’t overwhelming enough, this is only book one. I have two more books that are still in the rough draft of the writing phase. I will be busy.
To help myself get in the groove and accomplish my goals, I created a writing challenge for June. Since I have several writing friends and am part of a writing group, I decided to share this challenge with the hashtag #WriteAwayJune and I invite all writers, aspiring and published, to join me.
I am going to be following the challenge on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, and I am going to do my best to follow the hashtag as it is used. I’m hoping that this challenge will encourage writers, possibly help break a writing block or two, and help build positive writing goals. I also hope that this challenge will create some sense of community and unity amongst the writers of social media. It might a grand, impossible hope, but I think it’s worth sharing.
If you are a writer, no matter what stage of the writing game you’re on, please feel free to join this challenge. Save the provided image, share it on whatever media you would like, and join the challenge!