It does not have to be an original story or a journal entry, but writing can help unravel your mind and find perspective.
It does not have to be an original story or a journal entry, but writing can help unravel your mind and find perspective.
Suzy Hazelwood (Pexels)

Express Yourself…In Written Form

ACIT is “Encouraging Young Writers” to put pen to paper with a Spring Writing Contest.

For many, writing is a form of creative expression, and today, with social media and other internet platforms at our fingertips, many of us are able to enjoy and share this expression with so many audiences. National Encourage a Young Writer Day, celebrated on April 10th, was created with the hope to encourage people to sit down and get creative–whether it’s using random prompts or mining our own imagination and experience for writing ideas.

Not much is known about who founded National Encourage a Young Writer Day or how it came about, but what we do know is writing is everywhere and can be done by anyone. Writing can be well-scripted and produced YouTube videos, a well-crafted social media thread, song lyrics, and or poems. You may even find yourself writing in the margins of your math notebook as you daydream, but most powerfully, journaling. Jotting down thoughts throughout the day, to let go of built-up emotions and clear your mind. It can also help with critical thinking on certain topics that may trouble you, seeing them from a new perspective.

A young writer sits to begin her next story. (Pavel Daniluk (Pexels))

Writing never has to be difficult, but a fun prize at the end can make it worth it! Do you like to write short stories or other short fictional pieces? Maybe you never tried but think it might be fun to give it a go. In the spirit of National Encourage a Young Writer Day, ACIT and The Pursuit are sponsoring the Spring 2024 Creative Writing Contest. Check your email, and around the halls of ACIT for announcements and codes to register. You can also find out more details here. Submissions will be accepted until April 17 at 11:59 pm.

Still on the fence about signing up for the contest? The Pursuit had a chance to talk with 2022’s runner-up Short Story winner, Devynn Steinman, as they talked about different aspects of writing and offered tips to help new contestants who are ready to give their story a live audience.

The art of putting pen to paper is becoming a lost art. Many writers still believe that writing by hand improves memory and minimizes distractions. ( (Stock Photo (Pixabay))

The Pursuit: What did you think of the writing contest? Was it something you see as a benefit to help your writing?
Devynn: I enjoyed it! I thought it was pretty well organized and it was fun to participate in. I think it benefitted my writing just because it was definitely something that people were going to read, so I absolutely tried to make it the best I could. It also helped me make the themes and descriptions of my writing more clear so it could be better understood without being boring.

The Pursuit: Are there any tips that people can use that are helpful for you in terms of writing and your creativity? Any tips that you can give beginners registering for the writing contest?
Devynn: First of all, definitely manage your time. There was time during the end of the contest where I was rushing to get things edited. Another thing is that it’s good to know what your story and inspiration is before you start writing. That way, you can easily format it to fit the word count, but it also keeps you on track so your story makes sense. Also, I suggest finding songs that helps immerse you in your writing. It helps me keep a consistent tone and keep me interested in my own writing. Definitely don’t be afraid of having people help critique your [story] so you can make it the best you can.
Before registering for the contest, definitely read all the instructions and requirements, and then make sure you can commit to the deadline.

The Pursuit: Has writing helped you in any way?
Devynn: Yeah, it’s helped me a lot, actually. I first started writing because it was something that helped me process and explore my emotions. It was also just fun to create story and characters, especially after a long day. It’s just something that’s enjoyable to me.

For more information on the contest and how to register, click here. Have fun writing!

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