A word from the tortoise


Silk’s post-deadline post  I’m so proud of my writing friends for their accomplishments in this crazy writing challenge, and so grateful for their support through the past five months. Joe, Paula, Helga and Karalee – you’re the best of the best.

According to my calculations (with help from the handy MS Word counter), here’s the collective arithmetic for our writing challenge:

WRITERS:      5

NOVELS:      5

MONTHS:      5

PAGES WRITTEN:      1,214

WORDS WRITTEN:      251,886




Congratulations to Joe and Paula, who have already typed: “The End”, with special kudos to Joe who has already finished his second draft. What an accomplishment, Joe! We all hate you. I’m kidding. We all love you.

Honourable mentions to Karalee, who weighed in with the top word count in the “novels still in progress” category, and to Helga for completely starting over with a new novel halfway through the challenge and still managing to make excellent progress.

Of course, someone always has to be last, and this time the booby prize goes to me. The tortoise.

But don’t lose faith. I haven’t. Sometimes the tortoise does pretty well in the end. I’m still at it and I could still use some cheering on.

The fact is, the 5 writers challenge wasn’t a competition against each other. And it wasn’t merely a race against the clock. It was a gutsy journey of discovery by a fellowship of writers who have not only inspired and supported each other, but have also shared our story – the good, the bad and the ugly – with our friends and the writing community.

The writing was the challenging part. Learning about our personal strengths and weaknesses as writers working under pressure was the discovery part. Sharing with the world was the gutsy part.

But the story isn’t over. There are still pages to be written. And re-written. And hopefully published. The challenge continues.

As we take a breath and plan the next leg of the journey, I want to thank everyone who has followed our blog and encouraged us along the way so far. Writing is perhaps the ultimate solitary profession, but because of our 5 writers challenge, we’ve never been alone. I hope we’ve given our readers here something back.

Hope you’ll stay with us!

9 thoughts on “A word from the tortoise

  1. I really hope you do keep going at the projects, and that you try different time management and creative methods to get the words down, and keep them flowing, tweaking and adjusting those strategies as necessary to let you become career writers, doing what you love and do well, getting better and deeper as writers. Remember, none of those other lessons you learned will be of any benefit if you don’t follow Heinlein’s first two rules of writing: 1. Write. 2. Finish what you write.

  2. Thanks so much Silk for adding up all of our accomplishments in one big writing group effort! I thank all of my group for support and encouragement and our followers for following us!

    And yes, I have gotten over my over-reacting paranoid tendencies that followers means I’m being stalked! In fact, it’s a rallying of the masses interested in the same subjects and sharing their journeys.

    May our journey continue.

  3. I hope this isn’t the end of the blog. I’d like to follow your progress in sending out query letters,editing, and whatever else is involved in ultimately getting published.

  4. Silk: I’m not sure if this is appropriate for a blog comment, so I’m responding to this email. I’ve self published an ebook on Amazon and Smashwords, and would now like to try to get into print. I’d like to first find an editor to help me polish my manuscript, and then start querying agents and publishers. >Editorial services are plastered all over the net. How do I find a good editor? >How do I go about researching which agents to query? My book is like a historical novel, but it tells two parallel stories at once (the Trojan War myth and our invasion of Iraq; the parallels are striking) so I’m not really in any conventional genre or format. >Is it worth getting an agent? I’ve heard that they don’t do much any more.

    I’d be grateful for any advice. If, during your recuperation, you have nothing to do and can’t sleep, check out my book’s companion blog at xenoseye.wordpress.com.

  5. Oh, Silk, booby prize? No way. Shortest page count, but the symbol you have wisely chosen sums it up. You know in the end the tortoise will win. Slow and steady, stay the course, and all that. I am sure whatever you have written so far is awesome (I look forward reading it). It will be a great story, however long it takes. You just spent more time up front to make sure that’s what it will be.

    • You’re not the only tortoise out there. Thankfully, we all travel at our own pace. that’s what makes life interesting. I love the cartoon with the snail riding on the back of a tortoise and the snail is screaming, “slow down! you’re going to kill us.”

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