Monday, May 5, 2014

Monday's Minute Challenge: Writing Prompt Contest for Teens & Up

A quick writing challenge (and contest) to help get your creative juices flowing for the new week.

  1. The entry must be between 150 - 300 words. Otherwise, your entry will not be accepted. (In order to see how many words your entry is, write it in Microsoft Word, or you can copy and paste it here.)
  2. The deadline for the contest will be the following Friday. 
  3. You do not have to be a teen to enter the contest.
  4. The same person cannot win first place two weeks in a row. (Some exceptions may apply.)
  5. If there is at least 5 entries, the panel of judges will select a 2nd and 1st place. If there is at least 10 entries, the judges will select a 3rd, 2nd, and 1st place. However, if there is under 5 entries, the panel of judges will only select one winner.
  6. If there are at least 10 entries, there will be a few Honorable Recognitions, which are the next highest winners. They will receive a badge, as well as 3 points.
  7. The winners will receive a badge for their blog, as well as extra points (see the point system below).
  8. The winner will be chosen based on the judges's preferences, as well as the following questions: Does this entry capture my attention immediately? Does it make me want to continue reading? Is the writing clear? They will also take into consideration the writer's voice and style--not necessarily technical issues, such as grammar, punctuation, etc. 
  9. If you have entered at least 3 contests and have yet to place, send me an email and I will be happy to give you a critique of your last entry, which will include tips and suggestions.
  10. This is only for fun and to stretch your writing muscles--not necessarily to be taken too seriously. =)


More prizes to come!
  • 30 points: You will be able to create your own prompt that will be used in Monday's Minute Challenge!
  • 40 points: You will receive a critique based on your current week's entry.
  • 50 points: You will receive a free blog critique and helpful suggestions.
  • 70 points: You will receive an 700 word critique on your novel, short story, article, etc.
  • 80 points: You can help judge one of the contests!
  • 90 points: You will receive two weeks free in my Write Now Mentoring Program!
  • 100 points: You will receive a free ebook of PURPLE MOON. =)
  • 150 points: You will receive a personalized handmade notepad. 
Earning Points:
  • 20 points: If you sign up for a month of my Write Now Mentoring Program!
  • 5 points: If you post a review of Purple Moon on Amazon and/or Goodreads. (Let me know in the comments if you do!)
  • 5 points: If you join the Purple Moon Publicity Group on Facebook. (You will have the chance to participate in monthly giveaways!)
  • 3 points: If you cast your vote! (See the end of this post.)
  • 3 points: If you post your entry on your blog, linking back to this post
  • 2 points: If you post a tweet about Monday's Minute Challenge, with hashtag #MondaysMinute (You may tweet more than once in a week, however the points will only count for one tweet.)
  • 2 points: If you follow this blog via Google Friend Connect. (Let me know in the comments if you do!)
  • 2 points: If you "like" my Facebook page. (Let me know in the comments if you do!)
  • 2 points: If you follow my Twitter account(Let me know in the comments if you do!)
  • 2 points: Become a "fan" of me on Goodreads. (Let me know in the comments if you do!)
  • 2 points: Follow me on Pinterest. (Let me know in the comments if you do!)
  • 10 points: If you win 1st place in the writing prompt contest.
  • 7 points: If you win 2nd place in the writing prompt contest.
  • 5 points: If you win 3rd place in the writing prompt contest.
  • 3 points: You receive an Honorable Recognition. 
Points Tracker:
  • TW Wright: 98
  • Mary B: 68
  • Elisabeth: 56
  • Angela: 10
  • Funto: 9
  • Benj. Evans: 30
  • S. Brightly: 12
  • Jacqueline: 59
  • Rebekah B: 38
  • Anna: 27
  • His Princess: 55
  • Tara T: 58
  • Evan: 10
  • Rcubed: 60
  • Sarah: 76
  • Jillian: 10
  • Brooke: 12
  • Kaley: 2
  • Karina: 23
  • Kaira Anne: 42
  • Katheline: 16
  • Kendra: 6
  • Lottie Le: 6
  • CeCe: 10
  • Katie: 5
  • Marsh: 20
*Points are updated every Monday.
*When you request to use your points for a prize, the points you use will be taken away from your total. In other words, when you reach 30 points, you can claim the prize for 30 points--but it will cost you all of your points. Or you can continue to try and earn points so you can claim a bigger prize.


If you have entered at least 3 contests and have yet to win, please send me an email and I will be happy to give you a critique of your last entry and offer suggestions.

The judge panel chooses these winners based on a point system (not to be confused with the point system mentioned above!) 

Thanks so much to everyone who voted! It helped the judge panel tremendously.

Also, please don't get discouraged if you have yet to place (or haven't in a few weeks)! The competition is very tough, but the judges still think every one of your entries are impressive. So keep it up! =)

(Keep in mind that the judges are not aware of which entry belongs to which participant until after the judging is complete.)

The entries that the judges thought was the most intriguing (based on rule #4) is ... 

Third place winner: 

My balance wavered as a young girl bumped into me, face turned upward with a worried expression.
“I’m sorry, are you okay?” The girl bit her lip and pulled her dark cloak around her. A flash of blue protruded near her feet, but she hid it before I could ask any questions. 
“It’s fine.” I shook my head. “I’m Derrik, and you are?”
She didn’t answer me. The girl’s attention was caught by something else as she stood on her toes, peering out into the massive crowd that was milling around the town square. Something was different about her. She seemed anxious and jittery. A terrified expression became painted on her face; she gave me one last glance before darting into an alleyway. Her cloak became unpinned with this action; it cascaded to the ground revealing an extravagant, bright blue ball dress. 
I stood frozen in place, watching her streak across alley with thudding footsteps on the stone pavement. My body finally obeying, I sprinted after her, but stopped short after I saw a strange sight. The girl had paused by a square opening in the brick alley wall. I hid in the shadows, hoping they would cover my presence. She took a step towards the tunnel, glancing behind her every so often. Her shoulder’s rose and fell with a forced breath. Shouts called out from the street before turning sharply into the alleyway. The girl turned frantically towards the direction of the yelling. Her footing slipped, sending her flying onto the stone pavement beneath her. A jagged scrape appeared on her leg, a small trickle of blood flowing from it. The girl let out a whimper before fleeing into the tunnel. Who was this girl? What was her story? Where was she going?
Congratulations, Katie! Click here for your badge. =)

Second place winner: 

They were coming. And I had to run; I had to run far, far, away. “Go Catherine. Quickly!” Mother shoved me away from the ballroom, into the flood of people desperately trying to leave alive. Without hesitating, I merged into the frantic bodies of our guests. Stay with the crowd until you get to the second to last painting of the Gallery. Mother’s instructions, drilled into my memory since I was a toddler, played in my head. Turn into the dark hallway. Feel your way to the door. I heard a scream and a crash as the raiders tore through the front doors. The painting I needed to get to was on my right. I pushed against the crush and leapt into the hidden corridor. Running the palms of both my hands on the wall, I slid down the corridor. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the bright pastel colors of the ladies’ dresses and the ruffled cravats of the gentlemen. Their extravagant outfits would be ruined with blood tonight. Finally, I felt the knob of a door dig into my thigh. Pressed against the wall, I turned the knob with my hand, willing it not to make a sound. The door opened outward, towards the courtyard. Once you are through the door, run to the third brick nook on your left and hurry through until you get to the Underground. Then, follow the trolls. Whatever you do, don’t look back. I arched my back through the small doorway and emerged outside. Third nook on the left, I chanted in my head. There. Remembering Mother’s instructions, I ran through the hollow. Don’t look back, Catherine. Don’t look back. You can't ever go back. 
Congratulations, Angela! Click here for your badge. =)

First place winner: 

I'd always been weirdly obsessed with keys. The mystery, the promise: but the one I held in my hands was like no other before. It was heavy in my hand, ancient--holding tales of worlds and lands and time.

The old grandfather clock chimed three; a harmony to the church bells. No one would be awake. I had to go.

Gripping the key, I tiptoed down the street, the brisk air dancing over darkened cobblestone streets. I inched my way, hugging the wall, I had to be close. The castle loomed above me, but I tried to ignore it's foreboding presence.

I felt my way to the gate, wincing at the squeaking of the rusty iron. I ran across the courtyard, and put my key into the cell door lock.

"Anna?" I whispered through the door.

She ran to the door, which I unlocked, "You came!"

"I told you I'd come." I took her hand and ran with her back to the gate.
That was when the knife sailed over my head. I pulled Anna down, then pushed her towards the door, and stood to face my foe.

"I knew you'd come," the laugh made the night air colder. "Your rescue mission, it's pie in the sky." Then the speaker saw the open cell door, and turned on me with a cry of rage. I ducked the knife, but didn't see the third one coming.

Pain exploded through my chest and body, I felt myself crumpling to the ground. Then everything faded, the laugh, the terror, my own screams.
Congratulations, Kaira! Click here for your badge. =)

Honorable Recognitions

These winners will receive a badge, as well as 3 extra points:
  1. Mary B.
  2. Kendra
  3. Sarah
Congratulations! Click here for your badge. =)

Thanks so much to everyone who participated!

  • Submit your response in the comments below. 
  • Your response should range between 150 - 300 words. 
  • The deadline for the contest will be this Friday. 
  • Let me know which prompt you have chosen.
  • If you'd rather not submit your post in the comments, you may email it to me instead.


1) Your response should range between 150 - 300 words, otherwise it will not be accepted. (Copy and paste your entry here to count the words, or you could write it on Microsoft Word.)
2) The deadline for the contest is this Friday.

Choose at least one:

Note: You can always combine the prompts into one entry.
  • Write a passage continuing your entry from last week week (or whichever week you'd prefer). If you can, try to continue it using one of the following prompts.
  • Write a passage using these items: basket, skateboard, and hammer. 
  • Write a passage based on this picture
  • Write a passage using this phrase: I'd told myself I would never come back here again ... yet here I am. 
Cast Your Vote!

We're going to try something new at Monday's Minute Challenge.

Since choosing the winners is such a time-consuming process for the judges, and since you already read each others responses, we have decided to give you the opportunity to take part in the judging process. =)

Here's how it works:
  • You can vote for 3 entries per week, but you may not vote for yourself.
  • You can only click "submit" once per week, so be sure to wait until you have selected your top 3 entries before casting your vote.
  • Please do not vote until at least 7 entries have been submitted. (If you do before then, your vote will not count.)
  • Only the participants of Monday's Minute Challenge may vote.
  • Voting will only take place from Monday - Thursday.
  • We will choose the 3 people with the highest amount of votes, then select another 3 or 4 that we think deserve to win as well.
  • From those 6 or 7 entries, we will then select the winners (including the Honorable Recognitions.)

You will also receive 3 points for voting. So when you are done, please post a comment below saying that you have casted your vote.  

To vote, please enter the names of the 1 - 3 writers you are voting for below (or click here instead):

Current Judge Panel:

♡ ♡ ♡

Would you like to start a Purple Moon party?!

If you get together with at least four of your friends to read my book, let me know and we can put together a Purple Moon party! 

Pin It!
For this party, I will . . .
  • Send you a free autographed book for you or your friend
  • Email you a free PDF which will instruct you on how to throw a Purple Moon party by providing certain snacks, coffee, and chocolate. It will also include fun activities you can do with your friends at the party, such as creating a prediction of how you think the rest of the series will go, creating your own dream school or coffee shop, instructions on how to make a Luna Bonita Latte and a sleeping mask, etc.!
  • ​I will also be willing to chat with you girls via Skype! In this session, we will discuss the Reader's Group Guide which can be found in the back of the book. You will then have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have.
Interested? Email me at christiswrite (at) gmail (dot) com. =)

post signature


  1. Congrats winners!! =D

    Here's my entry:

    Thanks for doing this Tessa!! =D

    TW Wright

    1. I really like this, TW Wright!

    2. Oh. My. Goodness. I love it TW! So utterly thrilling. :)


    3. What a sad and beautiful story!

  2. Here's mine, it's 295 words and using the sentence and the picture prompt.
    Thank you for the honorable recognition. Good job to all the winners!

    I'd told myself I would never come back here again ... yet here I am. This place holds my heart. I'd told myself that I wouldn't come here because the guilt and the grief would be to much to bear. Then I saw it, the glow of a lantern. A small boat comes into view, I can see only one passenger, a girl of about 7. She stands and I can see her more clearly. She wears a long white dress and her hair is long and brown. She looks like my sister did. A gentle, yet grief filled voice echoes across the water. I can't see her face, but I know my own is glistening with tears. And then the truth comes to me, this is my sister's daughter, my niece. I call to her, but she does not hear. And now I realize that my sister is dead, and my niece is an orphan-I don't even know her name. Or do I? Soon after I'd left my sister in a fit of anger, she'd sent me a letter. I'd never opened it. Now I did, with trembling fingers,

    Dearest sister,
    I am sorry, you are probably angry at me with good reason, but please, I am begging you, if something happens to us, please care for our daughter, search the world if you must. Her name is Aylea.
    Your sister,

    It doesn't seem right, my last words to her words of anger, her last words to me words of love. I call her name, Ellian. Seconds, minutes, maybe hours pass and when I look up the boat is gone. "Aylea!" I call, broken hearted. Once again I have failed my sister. Now I must search the world for one little girl. Aylea.

  3. I'd told myself I would never come back here again ... yet here I am. I kneel by my sister's grave, the tears don't come. It would be a relief if they could—if this wrenching ache could subside.


    All that remains of my best friend is buried beneath those terrible words.

    I wish I could rewrite the tombstone, to tell the story—to tell the things that really mattered. But then, there are no words that could describe the vibrance, the life, the kindness.

    But all that remains is the cold stone. 1997-2013

    A dandelion pokes its shining head through the soil around the tombstone. Somehow this seems more fitting than the brilliant roses I hold. Cheerful and understated, and, according to the man who killed her, a weed.

    I suppose I've forgiven him—over and over again. Every time I let go of the anger, it comes back to haunt me again.

    They say 'forgive and forget,' but I can't forget, only forgive.

    A tear breaks loose of the invisible binding, trickling down my cheek and onto the stone.

    She was so much more than the words on the tombstone.


    1. I love it! Very nice job! :)

    2. Thank you everyone. I think I've been liking to write sad things lately.

    3. Beautiful! My heart is feeling all wrung now, from these entries! :)

    4. Ooh, Kaira, you did a really good job. :)

  4. I love all the entries! Here's mine:
    In Christ,

    1. Ugh, now I want to know more. Great job, Sarah!

    2. This is so exciting and vivid! I have no idea how I'm going to vote this week.

    3. Thank you! You guys' entries were great too!
      In Christ,

  5. I'm using the picture prompt and the sentence prompt. And TW, I promise I wrote mine before I read yours! I didn't copy yours. :)

    1. Great job! I love your description of the empty boat.

  6. It was cold here, on the lake. The temperature matched the frigid feeling of anxiety that coursed through my veins and clouded by chest. I didn’t know how many days it was since I had emerged from the Underground. The trolls had been very kind to me after everything that happened. They supplied me with this small boat, the lantern, and a child’s dress. “It may help ease the memory and disguise.” They told me. But the memory of having to leave in a panic on my sixteenth birthday was seared into my mind, whether I wore the blue ball gown or not. And this dress was made for a younger girl, one who enjoyed dancing, and singing, and riding ponies; one who didn’t have to worry about which day may be her last. I held the lantern up to my face, enough to cast a bit of light over the boat’s edge. There was nothing else on the lake, mainly because it wasn’t supposed to exist. A lot of things in my kingdom weren’t supposed to exist; the raiders, the legend, the…
    “Hey! Little girl! What are you doing out here?” Little girl? Who is th- it’s me…..They’ve found me.

    This is my entry. I used the picture prompt and continued from last week's MMC.

    1. Great! This protagonist is promising to be interesting.

  7. Okay, here's my entry! Congrats to all the other winners :) I used the picture prompt and the sentence.

    I lifted my lantern up to my face, peering into the forest that had overgrown onto the shoreline. I told myself that this was risky business. I’d told myself that I would never come back here again…yet here I was. I scoffed, sitting down on the boat’s small wooden seats. The water nudged the boat’s side gently, creating an everlasting rocking motion. I clenched my fists, standing up. The boat tottered unsteadily, but I caught my balance. How could I be such a fool? Did I actually believe that they would come? I closed my eyes, taking a deep breath. The cool night’s mist spread across my face, relieving my angry notions. Once again I grabbed the lantern, hoping that my suspicions were wrong. Maybe they would come. Maybe they would prove me wrong, and show that they could be trustworthy and worthwhile people to be with. I looked at the water beneath me, staring at my reflection in the midst of the eerie light casting down from my lantern. Peering past my face, I gazed down at the fish that had gathered together in a tight group. A slight breeze picked up; my lantern’s flame flickered as all the fish scattered abruptly. A howling sound came from the shore. My eyes darted around; everything was becoming more terrifying as the seconds ticked by. I looked back towards the fish again, or where they used to be. A dark shape formed in the depths of the water. My boat was met with a hard shove; I fell with a shriek to the ground, watering seeping through the cracks in the side. My lantern fell overboard, everything was black. Giving in to the presence from the water, my boat splintered. Water was everywhere. It engulfed me completely.

    1. That is so good, I think I'm scared. :)

    2. Good job Katie! Everyone seems to be doing scary and sad prompts.

    3. SO AWESOME!!!!!

  8. Congrats to all the winners! Here's my entry, 300 words and using the picture prompt.

    Ellie stared back at her reflection, wondering, watching, and waiting for Bethany to return. After waiting for three minutes as was agreed, Ellie did the secret code they’d worked on. Nothing happened. She looked around, baffled that nothing happened, considering how many times she and Bethany had snuck out to see each other. After eight minutes of waiting and watching, she got tired of waiting and started rowing herself back to the shore. As soon as she was half way there, she saw a boat heading towards her. "Oh finally, I was starting to think you forgot it was tonight.” Ellie said with a small reassured laugh. The laugh was abruptly caught in her throat when she saw who was rowing the boat. She caught her breath upon seeing that long lost face once again. Benjamin. Suddenly, unbidden images of the fire and ash her parents went into to save everyone else, including Benjamin, who had started the fire that had killed her family. She’d told herself she would never go back again ... yet there she was, missing, wanting, crying for the lost loved ones that had once been hers, but were now taken, all because of that cruel, heartless monster. “No, never again!” Ellie shouted her thoughts with such passion and enmity that with a rush of adrenaline that she rowed faster than ever before to get to that miserable wretch who had once been her beloved brother. He was so surprised when the small rowboat crashed into his that he toppled out backwards. Ellie was so mad she hardly even realized it, until she was pulled out herself. Ellie, not knowing how to swim, clung to the boat for dear life. Something grasped her leg and yanked it downwards until her whole body was underneath the surface.

    Hope you enjoyed!

  9. Here is my entry:


  11. My entry:

    I might not be commenting much this week as my phone tends to act up when it comes to comments. I'm hoping this will go through.

  12. Here's my very first story! Hope you like it!

    I slipped through the darkness with my dark green cloak covering my face. I tried my best to blend in with the shadows. I’d told myself I would never come back here again… yet here I am. My heart pounded and I was sure that he could hear it. If he saw me my whole plan would be ruined, but I had to know the truth. Then suddenly I saw him, my breath came out in ragged gasps of fear, but I had to get closer. Slowly I crept closer and I felt sure that he would see me. Before I knew it I could see what he was doing. I gasped. I had to warn the others. He turned his head having heard my gasp. His eyes glimmered and he stood up and began to gaze around. I held as still as I possibly could thinking his gaze would miss me. Without warning he began to run toward me. Shaking with fear I jumped to my feet. I ran blinding into the trees and tripped over a tree root. He caught up to me and grabbed me by my arm.
    “Did you really think you would escape me a second time Samantha?” he whispered in my ear.
    “Please!” I whimpered and began to cry.
    He paid no attention to my pleas and led me toward a building I thought I would never enter again.
    Thoughts began to race through my head as he shoved me into a small room. How will I get out again? How will the other girls know what happened to me? How will they know what he is doing?
    He stood above me with a sharp object above his head. I closed my eyes and prepared myself for the pain.

    1. This is really good, Emily!

    2. Very good Emily!

    3. Thanks you guys! I really like doing this! Now I look forward to Monday!

  13. I voted! Thanks for holding these, Tessa :)

  14. I voted!! =) Everyone's entries are awesome!! Good job, everyone!! =)
    Ditto to Katie, thanks for holding these, Tessa!! =D


  15. I voted! These challenges are always so much fun and my sister and I look forward to them every week!! God Bless!

  16. I voted but it was tough! I have to take a break now from these challenges for several weeks to catch up on schoolwork but I hope to be back. Thanks so much for having MMC every week, Tessa, and thanks for all your comments, guys! It's been awesome writing and reading along with you.

  17. Here's mine for the week using the picture prompt, 286 words. :)

    If I'd have stopped to let myself think about it, I would have realized that my running through the dark woods on this balmy summer night was absolutely crazy. We were heading towards the old swimming lake- a place that no one around our piece of earth had visited for over twenty-odd years. The tragic story surrounding that body of water had grown and changed over the years, but the moral remained the same: Stay away from that lake. Always.

    But my son had burst into the kitchen insisting that someone over that way needed our help. I wasn't at all inclined to believe him at first, knowing as I did the way his vivid imagination worked. But his gulping breaths, wide eyes and panicked tone quickly convinced me that even if there really was no one there, he definitely believed there was. So against my better judgment, I followed him.

    "Almost there, Mama." His boyish voice sounded strangely protective, as if he somehow sensed the nausea that was creeping up on me as we neared our destination. It was the only thing keeping me from demanding he tell me how he knew the way here so well. Surely he hadn't been sneaking-

    The bobbing light over the waters snapped my thought in two, and my breath caught sharply as I came to a stop on the shore. The small silhouette of a young girl was illuminated by the lantern she held, and she looked up calmly as we approached.

    "See, there she is!" Josiah was still breathless.

    My mouth went dry. The girl... she looked just like... like...

    "Rachel?" I whispered weakly. Josiah caught my hand as I stumbled backwards.

    It couldn't be her.

    1. Love it!!!!!!

    2. Really good, S. Brightly!

    3. How intriguing and gripping! :)


    4. This is awesome! I want to see what happens next!!! Gah!!

  18. Hey, HP, where is your story??

    1. Its coming, S. Brightly! :) Thank you for wondering.


  19. I voted! It was really hard to vote. Good job everyone!

  20. Sorry this is so late, ya'll, but my whole family is sick and I have also come down with a cold. But nonetheless here is my story. It is 298 words and I used the sentence prompt.

    I'd told myself I would never come back here again ... yet here I am. My eyes take in the building looming before me and my vision blurs with unshed tears. I reach out a shaking hand to the old brass doorknob and give it a good turn. The door squeaks open just enough for me to step inside. The floor boards creak as I step on them and the whole house seems to groan in unison.
    I know don’t why but the place terrifies me. It makes no sense. I’m not superstitious so I’m not afraid of ghosts, the house is terribly run down but not ready to collapse. So why am I so scared? Maybe because of the stark resemblance the house holds to myself. Broken windows; broken heart. Empty rooms; empty soul. If I were to yell into the great expanse it would likely come back to my ears as an echo. Just like the echo bouncing around in my heart. I knew what that reverberation was saying but I had ignored it for so long it had become second nature to overlook its words.
    “Come home.”
    I had told myself for years that I didn’t need to ‘come home’. I was perfectly fine where I was at. I had a good job, a nice apartment, a new car; what more did I need? I had practically survived off of that reasoning. It was the bread and butter I fed myself, poisoned as it may be. But deep in the recesses of my soul I still knew what was wrong with my picture-perfect life. I needed more than just material things. I needed more than just misled reasoning. Again I heard those familiar words echo in my heart.
    “Come home.”
    It was time.


    1. Good job, HP. I hope you and your family get well soon.

    2. Oh, HP, really, really good!

    3. I love this SO much. I wish I hadn't already voted! Very well done!

    4. Thank you all so very, very much! :)


  21. I tried to vote, but it said I already responded, so I don't know if I voted or not.

  22. I voted!! Can't wait to see who wins; everyone's entries were absolutely wonderful. :)

  23. I voted! Ya'll are such good writers! :)



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