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deletedJul 18, 2022Liked by Maegan Heil
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😄

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I mean, it’s kind of in the title 🤷🏻‍♀️ 😁🤣

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I love how you used the parenthetical asides to added another dimension to the voice in your story!

And thanks for linking to that George Saunders post, I’m saving it for later.

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Thanks, Matt! Yes check out that link and I hope you will give it a shot!

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Never heard of the 200-word/50-unique word challenge. Interesting and well done. I like those odd precision writing/editing challenges. This is a good one.

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Thanks, Robb! Yes, being confined by word limits or other rules does something weird/fun to my brain. If you find any similar exercises, please send my way!

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Did one several years ago called a Facebook Fictionette, or novelette. The challenge was to write a miniature novel in 14 days. You had to write one chapter a day for two weeks. Each chapter had to fit within 420 characters/spaces, which at that time was the maximum length of a Facebook post (told you it was a few years ago).

You couldn't just write a story then break it up into 420 character chunks. Each chapter had to act like a real chapter -- narrative, dialogue, setting, drive the plot forward, end on a forward thrust to make the reader want to come back the next day.

I decided, just because I'm such a nerd this way, to write each chapter not to just fit in 420 char/spaces, but to be exactly 420. I also wrote it not knowing where the story was going. Just wrote the first chapter on day one then didn't think about it again until I sat down the next day to write chapter 2, etc. I think I was around chapter 10 or 11 before I allowed myself to start thinking about how the novel should end.

In any case, I won the contest and later on that story was published in an anthology, and a couple months ago my publisher included it in a collection of my short stories they published. So it just keeps coming around again. Probably wrote it 10 or 12 years ago. I don't even remember exactly.

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Nice! I’d love to read it. Send me the link to your anthology/collection that it’s in.

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The story is 'Ellie's Head.' It's the final story in the collection June Bug Gothic: Tales from the South. Here's a link to the launch announcement on Substack (with links to retailers if you're interested):

https://robbgrindstaff.substack.com/p/short-story-collection-released

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Oh, and I just remembered -- I'd posted the whole story to my website a few years ago and it's still there. I think I was supposed to take it down since it was being published. But apparently I forgot. So you can read just that story here:

https://www.robbgrindstaff.com/post/ellies-head

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Finally got around to reading this. Loved it! Excellent! Fun! I see why you won!!!

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Glad you enjoyed it. It was a load of fun to write.

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Little Tommy sounds like pure comedy gold. I legit lol'ed at that footnote. Looking forward to your next full piece!

Related to your submissions pain, I just found out about and subscribed to this newsletter called The Practicing Writer: https://erikadreifus.substack.com/.

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Thanks, Amran! I need to start writing down more of his little Tommyisms. Pushing to get my edits done on the full short this week. Fingers crossed my fruit loops will (as Mercer Mayer would say) Just Go To Bed! Thanks for the link, I'll check it out.

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Love the last line. I didn’t even remember you’d already used those words before! Great final combination!

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Thanks, Wil. Full disclosure, I totally goofed on my 50 unique words and had to swap out to abide by the rules!!!

P.S. I'm getting you that entree this week, dammit!

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I like the voice of the narrator. I could read more from this character. Novella? Thanks for sharing.

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Thank you, Rob!

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You're so good at this challenge, Maegan. Love this one even more than the last. Had me all hot and bothered haha!

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Thank you, Kris!!! 😁

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Love. These.

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Thank you, Steve 🥰

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I bet this is such a difficult challenge! It works so well though, and I think what elevates it further is the use of punctuation. The exclamation marks getting used with more frequency and the capitals and italics, all work really well in providing an escalating pace within the whole thing.

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Thank you!

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I was this many years old when I found out my elbow skin feels exactly like my penis does in my hand. From the bottom of my heart I thank you!

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Yes!!! Best. Comment. Ever. Haha!! Made my day.

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Thanks! Welcome! Glad I could make your day as you've now made my life with this information!

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Sep 8, 2022Liked by Maegan Heil

Unrelated: had to finally subscribe! Noticed overtime that were are both George Saunders / Chuck Palahnuik Substack superfans. Looking forward to future posts ✌🏼

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Thank you, Matt!! Write on!

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Feeling... traumatized.... o_0

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