Constrained Writing Contest #26 + Winners of Constrained Writing Contest #25

in #constrainedwriting2 years ago (edited)

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Most writing contests give you a writing prompt or at least a couple of words to work your idea around, which is why I decided to host a slightly different contest.


A constrained writing contest

Instead of being given an idea or a writing prompt, you are allowed to choose the topic completely by yourself. But, varying from week to week, you will face different challenges that limit your writing.

You will be required to omit certain words, use a specific word in every second sentence, use a given sentence unchanged, write a story with a certain amount of words... or a combination of all.


Winners of constrained writing contest #25

This week we had an increase in the number of participants compared to the last few weeks, and let me tell you, the stories were A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! The constraint itself allowed for a lot of freedom, and I believe a good starting point for what yielded plenty of masterpieces produced by the participants. Picking the top 3 was hard. Picking amongst the top 3 was hard. I just wanted to give them all first place - but that's sadly impossible. The stories were all so very well thought out, full of details and great twists!
There is no denying, however, that some authors have a way to my heart - and I suppose to others' as well - and that we all have much to learn from them.
Here are the top 3 that I picked this week:

Know how when you travel and have fun, you buy yourself a souvenir, then every time you see that souvenir, it brings you right back to that place, and makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside? Know how when you're feeling most stressed or most sad, one single look at the picture of your loved one can give you all the warmth in the world and allows you to slay the blues and smile?
This story by @suzanrs is nothing short of a masterpiece that contains all sorts of hidden gems.
A prediction of the future? Check.
Love and warmth? Check.
A child's innocence? Check.
An amazing plot and twist? Check.
Outstanding attention to detail? Check.
And the list goes on.
I'm still bedazzled by your story, and am in search of a pear-shaped rock myself. Definitely going to keep it around and let it remind me of the feelings I felt reading your story.

Remember how I talked about the attention to detail in @suzanrs' story? And the great plot and twist and, ... .... This story is no different. The details @spalatino managed to put inside, although subtle, allow you to immerse yourself so fully, you even feel wet along with your character. He's definitely got one of the greatest talents to make his characters come to life and for that, @spalatino, I as a reader am thankful and happy to be able to read your stories. I definitely have much to learn from you.

I don't want to spoil too much of the plot twist here, so I'll give you a quick preview and get you interested enough to give this amazing story a read yourself.
Imagine an alternate world in which you would be able to learn everything about a person without ever meeting them in person. Knowing their deepest secrets, their deepest thoughts, ... being allowed a vision into their true self.
And you would find this person so attractive, not because of their visual appearance, but because of their thought patterns and who they actually are, that you would fall in love with them.
Then you realize that there is a possibility for you to meet them.
And spend the rest of your life with them.
Would you have given it a try?

Oh, and, the attention to detail? Check, check, check! Absolutely amazing!


The stories I have mentioned thus far are definitely stories every writer should read. There is so much to learn from them that it would be a sin not to. So, if you haven't yet, I warmly invite you to immerse yourself into a separate world and have your minds blown.
It's worth it! I promise!

I left some more feedback to each story in the comments section! ^^

Honorable mentions in alphabetical order:

If I, by any chance, missed your entry, please do not hesitate to let me know, and I will do my best to redeem myself. I have missed an entry in the past, so I now pay extra attention, but ... It can happen still.
Sorry and thanks!

Proof of payment:



With that out of the way, onto constrained writing contest #26!


Rules:

This week it I'm the judge again!

Here is what I came up for this week:

  • Write a story that reads like (an entry of) a journal. It can be several logs (days) long, or only one.
  • The story must be at least 250 words long and in English

Click here for an example story I wrote.

And as for the usual mumbo jumbo, here's the rest of the rules just about every contest has:

  • Upvote this post
  • Post a link to your entry in the comments below
  • Include tag #constrainedwriting among your other tags
  • Should you wish to help raise awareness of the contest, please consider resteeming this post (it is by no means compulsory)

Prizes

I will pay out this post's payout in full, both SBD and STEEM!


  • 1st place: 45% of post's payout
  • 2nd place: 27% of post's payout
  • 3rd place 18 % of post's payout
  • Judge takes 5 % for his/her efforts
  • I will take 5 % for hosting, writing and editing the contest

*Note: In case I receive any donations for the contest, the payout percentages apply to the donation itself as well.


Judges

This week I am the judge of the Constrained Writing Contest I am responsible for picking the winners on my own discretion, but I promise to try my best and be as objective as possible.

What's that I hear? You wish to be a judge too? Well look no further!
To apply for a judge and make up your own rules, simply send @svashta a hearty hello on Discord (Svashta#5207).

*Disclaimer: I will only allow fellow writers as judges to keep the competition high quality.


Deadline

  • Entries are accepted until this post's payout
  • Your entry post must be newer than this post

Good luck!


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Oooo I really like this next one! The wheels are turning and the ideas are flowing like a river into a sea of endless possibilities. Congrats to the winners and thanks @svashta for hosting this AWESOME contest!

So happy to hear about it! :D Looking forward to read what you come up with! :D

The pleasure is all mine, @foragingquietude <3 ^^

Congrats to everyone and thank you for the kind words @svashta , also thank you for the support @suzanrs. Now lets make some material for the Constrained writing book :)

I am all up for that though, we could have the winning entries of all contests thus far compiled, or just the ones we feel stand out most and are best.
If we really do intend to make this come true, I suggest we meet on Discord some day and discuss this in further detail :P

Love the journal entry theme and congrats to the previous winners. My entry:

https://steemit.com/writing/@foxfiction/the-far-pale-land-an-entry-for-the-svashta-constrained-writing-contest-26

Thanks!
It was mostly inspired by @foragingquietude's entry and I love it very much as well! :D

I will read your story around the contest end, both because I want to have a clear mind when I do, and because I also want to write a story to this constraint myself and don't want to be influenced too much :P
But I'll leave a hearty upvote already :D

Thank you so very much for your entry!

The comment is also shorter! :O
I feel scammed! :P
I'll give it a read sometime around the end of the contest, but most certainly give it an upvote now! :D

Thank you very much for your entry!
And you know I wouldn't mind a little longer story :P

Trust me this didnt warrant being longer but should make you laugh... comedy is often at the expense of misfortune ;)

Oh jolly! I'm looking forward to having a good laugh! :D

Thank you so much. Head very large now :D. Also a big shout out to @spalatino . I loved that one and am standing on the concrete as I write ;) As for the story by @foragingquietude I can imagine - think 21st century, two countries, email... it can happen but this was written so well I was definitely time travelling too. And the rest - all very good. Very very good. I'm proud to be a part of this little contest and I can see it growing as word gets about. Now to next week's - I'm on it ;D

As said, it was tough as nails to pick a winner, because all 3 of you had produced masterpieces that will come to mind every time I hear or think about "time travel". I thank you all, again, for that. <3

I hope to see it grow too! :D And am very happy to hear you're enjoying it! :D

Can't wait to read your next entry! ;D

Hello!

This is my entry for the contest:
A few pages from the journal of a shipwrecked team - My entry for the constrained writing contest #26 by @svashta.

The story contains 437 words. I hope you like fantasy and adventure, because this story is based on these genres.

I resteemed your post and I also mentioned your post in my entry. Hopefully this contest will be successful.

Best regards,
Xplosive.

Hey! Thank you so very much for your submission!
I will read it at the end of the contest along with the other entries, but in case I'd miss the voting period because of that, I'll cast an upvote now :D

Thank you very much for the resteem and the mention! It means a lot! :D

Also, yes! I'm very much into that! :D Hope the week comes round quick so I give it a read soon! :P

Congratulations @suzanrs @spalatino and @foragingquietude
Three stories I enjoyed very much! :) I particularly loved @foragingquietude's - I teared up a little at the end. Thank you for writing :)

I'm sorry I didn't get to enter last week's. Once again, I had half the story written down! I just couldn't work out how to finish it. (that's a big problem with me... I can think of ideas, but it's hard for me to finish them) Looking forward to trying again this week. :)

Thanks @kaelci! Don't give up on it! Finish it when you can and post it! Can't wait to see what you come up with.

Are you telling me you've got a bunch of unfinished stuff on "stand-by"?
I'll tell you what helped me with that :P
For shorter stories - up to about 1500 words, I finish them in one sitting. No matter what, I'll finish them at least within the same day. I'll write down whatever needs be written down, start to finish, and if I need to leave SOMETHING for another day, it's JUST the editing.
As for longer stories - like the Wild West that I have ongoing... Get back to it every single day and just do a little. write 100 words if you're low on time, or you can write 1000 if you wish. But always at least do something.
That's my best advice, though I'm not a certified author of any kind, so take it with a grain of salt. :P

Hope you manage to finish it still, or any of your former ones! :D

~hides~
I have a whole folder full of: "Document1, Document2, Document7219"
and obscurely titled things such as: "Freezey Woman, Timetravelling Bigfoot, Snow Elves"

Freezey Woman was actually somewhat done! A first chapter to a Fallout-esque universe because that was on my mind a lot at the time. :D

What I call my "proper writings" are only slightly better arranged! Haha! I have a folder for each story of my trilogy, and in each folder is: "Book 1, attempt" "attempt 23" "forest chapter" "final edition" "final edition again" ~ LOL

Anyway, my problem is that I'm a thinker. I can think of one sentence, and then I sit there and ponder the directions, I choose a direction and keep going, then I think some more. It's what's stopping me from joining the Freewrites also. I can't just let my mind wander. :(

Sigh.
Like, with this journal entry constraint, I thought of this:

16th Sept. I saw her again last night. Her radiant eyes agleam beneath the shroud of her auburn mane; she beckons, and I ignore, just as they told me to. She is not real.
And then... there was nothing! :o

I always have a sentence pop to mind as well! Then I'm like... well... what more do I need to put around it to make it the most enjoyable? What can lead up to this sentence that popped into my head?
Many of my freewrites begin by using the word in a sentence I want to use it in... then just make everything else fall in place, haha :D
If that makes sense? :P

Now I want to know how it continues!