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Nothing left to say?

Do you ever just sit and stare out of the window and wonder what to write?

I just did. I sat for a moment and looked out of the window next to me, wondering what to say about Like The Prose and writing challenges in general. How could I come up with something new and witty? What was there to say that I haven’t said before? Was that monkey about to be run over by that delivery driver on a scooter?

For those of you who don’t already know – I live in Penang, Malaysia. Also, I am notoriously easy to distract.

It doesn’t take much to turn my attention away from the laptop screen, and when a group of monkeys is facing off against food delivery bikers, who could resist?

For me, Like The Prose is the perfect writing challenge. It’s all about short stories so there’s less time for my mind to wander, and the brief that arrives every day gives me the jump-start I need to get my imagination working.

I remember being intimidated and nervous the first year I did this challenge. I had really only ever written plays before then and I wasn’t sure how to fit my ideas into a short story format. It’s safe to say that I’m now hooked on the genre and am looking forward to start.

With the world being turned on its head this past year, we could be in danger of running out of things to write about. Many writers, myself included, rely on people-watching to give them new ideas for characters and dialogue, but after more than 12 months of lockdown, quarantine and various Movement Control Orders, my nearest and dearest have ceased to inspire me.

So, it’s high time for another challenge. Time for that ‘ping’ that tells you there’s a new email containing a ticket to who-knows-where. Some of the pieces I have written during a TLC month have been the ones I am proudest of and a few have then morphed and shaped themselves before heading out into the world to show off.

Of course, some of the things I’ve written have been desperate, stilted and downright embarrassing but that’s the way it goes. I hide them away and try to remember that every piece of writing I do is a step forward and a learning experience.

I wonder where June will take us. How many different places will we visit and how many different people will we meet?

But I suppose I can stare out of the window for just a little longer – inspiration is just around the corner now.

And besides, I can see another delivery driver coming…

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