Blogging · Writing

Blogger Prompt Chain

Blogger Prompt Chain

Thank you to the awesome Rachel Poli who tagged me. Here’s to creating a “chain” of stories written by writers and bloggers.

Rules:

  1. Pick one of the five given writing prompts.
  2. Set up the Blogger Prompt Chain banner and publish your story under the banner.
  3. After your story, continue the chain by forwarding an invitation to five bloggers or writers. (In case a writer doesn’t have a blog, guest posts can be offered.)
  4. Don’t forget to link the writers to your blog and back to the one who invited you.
  5. Publish the five writing prompts and rules.

Prompts:

a) The End of The Bucket List

Write a story about a character who finds out that he or she is dying and has been knocking things off his/her bucket list and has finally reached the last item.

b) Get Out of the Car With Your Hands Up

You’re driving to your favourite city when you’re stopped by a police officer. Sure, you were going a few miles over the speed limit, so you’re not overly surprised. But you are surprised when the police officer gets to your car and screams, “Get out of your car with your hands up!” This leads to an unexpected night for you. Write this scene.

c) Hiring a New Villain

Your old villain quit over creative differences, so you’ve put yourself in charge of hiring a new villain for your novel. What questions do you ask? What does the new villain’s resume say? Write this scene as if it were a job interview.

d) At The End of The Rainbow

You and a friend have decided to try and follow a rainbow to see if the end holds a pot of gold. But when you finally reach the end, you find something much more valuable than a pot of gold—and it changes your life. Write this scene.

e) The Letter All Writers Should Write

Write a letter to a person who supported your writing career, whether that be a friend, a family member, a teacher (even one that supported you at a very young age before you knew that it would blossom into a writing career), an author you’ve never met but have been inspired by his or her writing. Do you thank them? Do you blame them? Take the letter in any direction you want.

The Letter All Writers Should Write:

Dear Ms. Davis,

Thank you for everything.

I will never forget all you did for me when I was young and dumb.

Thanks for taking interest, for asking questions. More than anything, I’m thankful you believed in me…even when I didn’t.

I’ll always remember you pulled me aside not once but twice. You cared enough to talk to me and see if I was okay before sending me home. You were also the first person who got the chance to tell me someone else wanted to publish my work.

I don’t know if I would’ve taken writing as seriously if not for the start I had. The beginning of every writer’s career matters a lot. I had a good one thanks to you.

I can’t remember everything but I remember some things. I’m sure the memories will come back. Slowly but surely. I’ll treasure all of them.

Your lessons have gone a long way. I owe a lot of my current successes and failures to you. I have no regrets.

You taught me how to be a student. More importantly, you educated me on how to be a writer.

I wonder where you are right now. I hope you’re doing well.

Thank you so much for everything.

I like to believe you’re proud of how much yet also how little I’ve changed. I’m still just as concise and vague at twenty years old like I was at fourteen.

Sincerely,

Herminia

My Invitations:

I’m going to be that blogger who tags everybody and essentially nobody to participate.

Thanks again to Rachel Poli for the invite. I hope you’re all following her amazing blog.

Personal Reflection

A Letter To My 30 Year Old Self

Dear 30 year old Herminia,

How are you?

I hope you’re happy. Doing what you love, loving what you do.

Are you well? Healthy?

I like to think you’re still dancing. Maybe not to the extent you used to. But maybe you’re even better.

What book are you reading? You’re reading something, aren’t you? You won’t abandon your first love or neglect reading, right?

I wonder how you feel about dating and relationships. I’m sure 10 years will change your perspective, especially if you’re with someone you love. If you aren’t with someone you love, remember you deserve better. Don’t settle. Don’t ever settle. If you aren’t with someone, in which case I’m not surprised, again don’t settle for just anyone.

How’s the blog, huh? 20 year old you hardly went a day without blogging.

I want to believe with every fibre of my being that writing is still a big part of your life. At least it has some role. Perhaps you’re writing more, maybe getting paid to.

That’s the dream. A recurring one for years.

If you’re stressed or sad, breathe. You’re going to be okay. Whatever you happen to be going through, it will pass. And come on, you’re Herminia Chow.

Also, have you gotten better at dealing with ink stains? Or do pens still get the best of you?

Is there any chance you wish you could go back to being 20 years old when things were simple? I so badly wish you love life with all your heart. That you’re happy where you are.

Here’s to living with no regrets. Don’t panic. Do you. You’re not anyone else.

Keep going. Your hard work will pay off. A lot of your work has probably already paid off.

I don’t know what else to say except good luck. Remember why you started when you want to give up. The only person holding you back is yourself. Go after your goals. Say yes. Roll the dice. You may be surprised, Herminia.

Sincerely,

A not nearly as wise 20 year old

Writing

What Writing Advice Would You Give To Your Older Self?

Dear older, hopefully wiser Herminia,

I know you can be your biggest critic. But I hope you will also be your biggest cheerleader.

When you’re having a bad day, don’t forget to look back and remember the good ones.

Celebrate your victories, however small they may be. Every acceptance. Every congratulations. Every publication.

You’ll hear no all the time. Don’t get discouraged. Continue with all the energy and enthusiasm you had when you first started.

Stay hungry figuratively.

Never settle. Never rest on your laurels. Never make excuses for anything within your control.

Change what you can. Let go of what you can’t. 

You can’t perfect every aspect of writing. So don’t aim for perfection. 

As good as you get, you can always get better. So keep improving and learning. 

Learn from the best. Use what does work. Learn from the worst. Discard what doesn’t work.

Cherish the moment. You may never have another one like it.

Have fun. You’ll probably work hard. Too hard sometimes. You don’t want to be on your deathbed wishing you worked less and partied more.

But you might still hate parties even when you’re older. If that’s the case, work less and read more. Or write more. Dance more. Or whatever it is you love then.

It doesn’t matter what people think. What they say or don’t say. This is your life. At the end of the day, you have to be able to live with your own thoughts. With all you’ve said and done.

Look in the mirror and smile at the girl in the reflection more.

Smile. Be happy. Laugh. Stay positive.

Remember in this industry, 99.9 percent of the time, nothing is personal. It’s business.

People are busy. You may not hear back from an agent or editor. They have a life. They weren’t meant to be in yours.

You’ll find a home for your story. Somewhere. Someday. When you’re ready and when your story is too.

On the topic of readiness, you can’t be ready for everything that life throws at you. That’s okay. Roll with the punches. And punch right back. Not literally. Violence, as you well know, isn’t the answer. It doesn’t solve the problem. Violence makes things worse. Creates more problems.

Keep going. Keep grinding. Rome wasn’t built in a day. A novel isn’t written in one either.

The road to publication is fraught with obstacles and setbacks. But when you reach the end, you’ll realize all your hard work was worth it.

And where one road ends, another begins. When one door closes, another opens.

How does that saying go again? You need to practice for 10,000 hours before you master a skill. Before you’re any good. You’ll never master the skill of writing. You can’t perfect writing. No matter how long you work or how much you write. As for how long it takes before you’re any good, as long as you need.

It might be five years. Two decades. Half a century.

Go at your own pace. Take your time. There’s no need to rush.

The journey is long. Whoever you are right now, wherever you stand, make the most of it. You might not be who you want to be or where you want to be. But you’ll get there.

Sincerely,

Younger, awfully dumber Herminia

Blogging

An Open Letter To Bloggers

Dear Bloggers,

No one expects you to reply to comments right away, so don’t feel guilty about taking a long time to respond. You need to sleep. You have a life outside of blogging. Other bloggers understand. They’re in the same boat as you. 

Also, you do not need to post every day. You don’t have to be plugged in and connected all the time. In fact, sometimes it helps your sanity to shut off the screen and breathe. To be in the present with no distractions.

You’ll have good days and bad days, just like everyone else. Enjoy the good. You’ll get trough the bad.

Blogging is hard. It’s challenging and difficult. But maintaining a blog can be rewarding. It’s worthwhile. 

Focus on what matters and forget about what doesn’t.

Have fun and enjoy yourself. It’s hard to sustain something if you aren’t having a good time. Write what you want, when you want, how you want. 

Adapt. Realize there’s so much you can’t change. Focus on the things you can.

It won’t always go your way. That’s okay. Take life in stride.

Keep learning, keep growing. Never stop.

Be your own blogger.

Wishing your blog the very best,

Herminia

School

An Open Letter To Students

Dear Students,

I know school isn’t always enjoyable, but I hope you never take learning for granted.

The school system isn’t perfect, but neither are you. So stop trying to be perfect. Don’t be that hard on yourself. You’re supposed to make mistakes and learn from them. If you aren’t, then you should be worried. 

While we’re on the topic of worrying, just remember there’s only so much you can control and so much more that you can’t. Control what you can. 

You can do something right now to close the gap between where you are at this very moment and where you want to be in a week, a month, a year. Do it. Don’t wait. Don’t procrastinate. 

Even when you’re busy, especially when you’re busy, take some time for yourself. Do something you enjoy doing. Read. Write. Sing. Dance.

It’s okay. It’s going to be okay. Breathe. Eat. Sleep. Allow yourself to live. Let yourself have a life. 

School isn’t forever. What you’re going through isn’t either. Take it day by day. If one entire day gets to be too much, take it hour by hour. Minute by minute.

I don’t personally know you, but I wish you the very best. You have what it takes to tackle any and every challenge coming your way. Also just about everyone I know who isn’t in school anymore wishes they could be. So enjoy your school years.

Please don’t ever stop learning.

From one life long learner to another,

Herminia

Writing

An Open Letter To Writers

An Open Letter To Writers


Dear Writers,

You’re human. You will always be human. You’ll make your share of mistakes. You’ll fail and fall repeatedly. That’s if you try. If you take chances and risks. But if you want something badly enough, you’ll go for it. And every failure and fall will be worth it.

You’ll do well to remember that you’re a writer, not a machine. And you’re a character, not a computer.

You’re an individual with a voice, with a story to tell. You have every right to speak up and use your voice. You have every right in the world to tell that story. Your story.

Love your art, your craft. Love what you do and do what you love. But ultimately love yourself while you’re doing. While you’re living.

Never let anyone make you feel ashamed for who you are. Don’t feel bad for liking who you like and loving what you love.

No. You’ll hear that word a lot more than you’ll hear yes. Rejection is not personal, so be professional. Don’t take anything personally.

Take writing seriously but don’t take yourself too seriously.

Sincerely,

An Aspiring Writer
Editing · Reading · Writing

A Letter To Teenagers

To many teenagers,

You need to learn how to read, how to write, and how to edit.

It would be greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,

An avid reader, an aspiring writer, and an amazing editor.

Is it pretentious to make such a request even though I am a teen myself?

Writing

About Letter Writing

Writing letters to family members or friends is one of the most classy and sophisticated things an individual can do. But I swear humans don’t do this enough.

Getting an email is nothing like receiving an envelope in the mail.

Posting a comment on somebody’s Facebook wall is the not the same as writing a letter with a pen and paper.

Don’t you dare compare a text message to a hand-written message.

That is all. Have a wonderful, non-letter writing day!