Monday, March 31, 2014

Slice of Life: Writing is a Habit (31 of 31)

It's the 31st day of the March Slice of Life Challenge.  The final day.   Thanks to the amazing Two Writing Teachers team for all of their support in this event.

Today ends the third year I have participated in the Slice of Life Challenge.  I remember the first year;  it was really all I could do to sit down to write each day.  There were days I just didn't think I'd be able to get anything down to publish.  Year two was a little better, but still sometimes just thinking of what I would write was a challenge.

When I joined in year one it was because I wanted to get back into the habit of writing.  Like getting back into exercise, I struggled.  After the challenge that year my ability to stay in the habit ebbed and flowed.  There were times I was writing and times I was not.  There were times ideas came easily and times they did not.

The First Challenge:  Crafting an Interesting Piece
Now in year three I have a better writing habit than I did those years ago.  This year, for me, the challenge wasn't in actually sitting down.  I've learned you can write about anything, the challenge is in making it interesting.  This time, the challenge was in crafting a piece of writing.  These three pieces were the ones I found most interesting to craft:

Respect the Dawg:  I had the most fun writing this piece.  I wanted to bring respect to the poor hot dog.

Making Gravy:  I've been trying to improve my writing of, what I will call, the personal essay.  My hope is to learn to write a piece that uses a story to illustrate a more universal message, to write about a truth we all understand.

Spring Symphony:  This was an attempt to continue the story I wrote last year, Did You Seen Her.  In these stories I played with personification a bit to tell the story of the push and pull between spring and winter this time of year.  In this year's story, Spring takes over the conducting of the symphony from Winter's long stay.

The Second Challenge:  Time to Polish
The hardest thing about the challenge is the lack of time to really polish a piece.  Because each day a new post is required, there really isn't time to leave the piece for a bit and come back to revise it.  This is always a little hard for me.

The Third Challenge:  Time to Read
Time to read is a big piece of being able to write.  There's something about studying the crafting techniques of others, discovering great lines, and considering interesting topics that helps make writing a little easier.  During the challenge I found it hard to get around to all of the blogs to read and comment the way I would like to have read.  Additionally, keeping up with my personal reading was a bit difficult.

The Gift
This community.  I'm so appreciative to everyone who has stopped by to comment.  The way you commented about the message, your connections to pieces, the parts of writing that caught your attention, really helped think more deeply about my writing.  The posts you wrote and shared on  your blogs taught me so much as I wandered enjoying the little slices of life.  Funny how all of the little pieces weave together into a beautiful bigger story.

What's Next?
For me, today ends the Slice of Life Challenge and begins my poem-a-day challenge for April.  I'm looking forward to a new writing adventure in the new month.  Thanks again to all of you who have stopped to comment, to all who have shared their writing, and to Two Writing Teachers for helping to support this amazing community.


  1. Great reflection on your three years. This was my first year and it will be interesting to see the growth from this year to next. I love the gravy post. I have several food memories of my in-laws. Special food - special times.

  2. Cathy, This is such a great reflection. I always enjoy reading your writing. Good luck on the poetry writing. I'm impressed!!

  3. Loved reading your reflections. Thanks for pulling me into all this with you.

  4. From one challenge to the next - good for you! Gearing up for March takes work and letting some things go (like reading), but it;s so worth it.

  5. I really admire your dedication by going from one challenge to the next! I need a little breather! I've enjoyed all your posts, Cathy, and now can't wait to read your poems!

  6. Cathy, I loved reading your reflection. This is my third year too. Maybe I'll try to reflect on my top three posts. I aspire to write personal essays too. And now I'm off to read two of your favorite posts that I missed. I read the Gravy one. I'll be looking forward to your poetry in April.

  7. Lovely to hear your reflection, Cathy. I'll be sure to look for your poems too. I'm mixing it up this month, mostly poetry, but some other things too. Time to relax a little! Cheers!


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