The Better Writer Challenge

I blog because I’m a writer. Or do I?

It’s so easy to get sucked into the trap of blogging for acceptance, rather than excellence. I’ve spent plenty of time in that uncomfortable cage myself. Thankfully, my friend, Kristina, is stepping up to the challenge to call out us closet writers, distracted writers, and insecure writers, to actually do the work to become a better writer. Over at the Allume Blog (Remember Relevant? Same thing, new name!) she’s doing a month-long series that’s both challenging and fun. The cool part is, after you complete your challenge for the day, you can post it in the private facebook group(just ask to join) and you can actually get critiques and encouragement from all the other writers!

Here’s mine for the day…(Proof that this challenge is actually working – I wrote a Tipi Tales for the first time in months…maybe years?) Enjoy and join the fun!

Day Two Challenge:
The best part was the woods. Acres and acres of woods, and all our own! It took weeks to venture outside of the few-acre yard we’d been accustomed to in suburbia. But then, oh the adventures! The freedom to blaze a trail and call it our own. To name any corner of our 200 acre homestead whatever silly or significant title we could come up with. Mom put a sign up on a stake right over the rock wall that bound the trees: “The Hundred Acre Wood”. For a little while, slate stepping stones dictated the path, but after that you were on your own. Veer left and down through the steep, tangled hillside toward the Picnic Spot on the creek. Cut straight down through the ancient apple trees to the fun and slightly spooky, frog-infested Marsh. Or pad along through damp leaves to the opposite Treeline where all the shy woodland flowers grew. Dragon-Toothed Violet and – we were so proud – all THREE shades of wild Trillium.

As we took hours-long tramps to the far reaches of our property lines, I still could not believe it all belonged to us. That we owned something so huge. Instead of making my 13 year-old-self feel small, though, I felt enlarged. After all, I must fill the shoes of Adventurer, Trailblazer, Treasure Hunter. The first treasure was a one pine tree (affectionately dubbed, The Lone Pine), the only deciduous tree besides the creek-side hemlocks. The next was a massive group of trunks, nine in all, of a giant bass trees all grown together. That one we called “Nueve”. Then the ancient, dug well protected by large flag stones. I loved the graveyard the best. Deliciously spooky with a giant hemlock quietly draping its branches to the tops of the surrounding stone wall.

I grew up in the nine years we lived off the land on a hill in Upstate New York. So much of who I am was defined by that time. Is that why I feel like I won’t be truly home until I once again own a wood to trample through? Or truly content until my children can experience the same adventure?

P.S. I have no idea why the fonts are doing this today. I’d fix it for ya’ll viewing pleasure,ย  but I’m not a techy! ๐Ÿ™‚

3 responses to “The Better Writer Challenge”

  1. Gretchen Avatar

    This group and challenge sounds fabulous!

    (And the weird font was due to some of the font being set at Heading 6. I fixed it. ;))

  2. Erin Avatar

    I’ve enjoyed all of your Tipi Tales, Trina, and this one is no exception They’re part of what got me hooked on your blog to begin with. They stir a mixture of feelings in me – – happy remembrances of my own childhood experiences in the countryside of upstate NY, plus a longing to be that young girl living out her own personal version of “Little House on the Prairie”. Just lovely. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. kateri Avatar

    You are making me home sick! There are many days that I wish we we had bought 100 acres of woods for our forever property,instead of just 13 acres (even though the 13 acres we ended up with reminds me a lot of the land I grew up on–just that everything is in minature. :). When I wrote the call of the woodcock poem last week, I was thinking in part of those old apple trees near the marsh on your property–there would almost always be a woodcock nest under those apple trees each spring.

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