Challenges for us at The African Writers are opportunities to help young African writers write more, challenge previously misconceived limitations and bond with other writers.
The TAW Creative Writing Challenge is designed to help you beat a major problem every writer has faced – The big, bad writers block.
We didn’t want to host just another competition but actually a movement that is intentional.
We researched into the problem and discovered five major causes of Writer’ Block. They are:
1. Perfectionism: Do you read your new works and think they are terrible? You feel embarrassed at them and just find yourself deleting everything you type or tearing up everything you write? Then you just might be battling with perfectionism.
2. Intimidation and the feeling of not being good enough: You read works of other writers and rather than feeling inspired to create yours, you see them as a confirmation of just how bad you are at this. You read your stuff, and theirs and you are overtaken by fear criticism.
3.Pressure to get appraisal: The world we live in today is powered by likes, comments, followers, awards and competitions. As amazing as these are, they have a way of taking the fun out of writing and building an overwhelming feeling of pressure. Pressure and an extreme desire for validation tends to block creativity, so this might be the reason for your block.
4. Lack of motivation: Among the writers who face Writer’s block would be a lot of individuals who have lost faith in their ability to be successful at writing. They think there are so many writers and there is no point in them continuing. If you don’t see a future in writing, it is hard to keep yourself engaged in the work.
5. Stress, anxiety and deadlines: As you grow in writing, you will desire to do more with your gift. You may be working on a book, freelancing for firms or writing content as a day job. These might result in you taking on a lot of work at the same time and setting unrealistic deadlines for yourself. This unfortunately would most times result in frustration and anger that could hinder creativity.
To combat all of this, we created a 15 day creativity challenge which is non competitive. It will serve to protect you from pressuring yourself to be perfect or feeling intimidated by other writers, motivate you to build faith in writing thus making writing more “fun” than “work”.
For 15 days we will write on diverse topics, prompts, pictures and videos in different forms. These aren’t automatic cures but they are designed to get you into the right state of mind to write. To make it fun and spontaneous the daily prompts/activities will be released 9am every morning on our website and much later on social media platforms.
Writers have the entire day to share their works on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter with the hashtags #CreativeWritingChallengebyTAW #BeatWritersBlockbyTAW Do ensure to tag us to your entries to enable us share and engage with you on all three platforms. We have a Facebook group as well which is a perfect avenue to bond, share your works and easily see the works of other writers. So, we encourage all participants to join and share on the group.
Follow us on Instagram: @africanwriters, twitter @writegrowbecome and Facebook @writegrowbecome Also join the Facebook group: The African Writers
We encourage participants to leave POSITIVE feedbacks on the pages of other writers. This is not a competition or a magical solution but just a way to get writers to let out their frustrations through the one thing they love – writing.
Remember, it is not a competition but a movement and a way to lead you back to loving and enjoying writing.
Here are some quotes to get you moving:
So who is charged up?
Well, I am! It will run through Saturday October 13 to October 27. Don’t forget, it is 9am every day on The African Writers website.
We look forward to reading your work.
About The Author
Faith Moyosore Agboola is an inspirational storyteller who uses words and visuals to tell stories that effect change.
She is the founder and creative director of The African Writers, a platform dedicated to showcasing, developing and connecting the new generation of young African Writers. She is also the convener of African Writers Meet, a yearly conference with the same purpose.
You can connect with her on @faithmoyosore on all platforms.