December 2005 Challenges Bulletin
- December Bulletin
[Remember that all links are members' side: you must be logged in to
HASA for them to work.]
Post your request at the Birthday Cards Forum
Also, don't forget to create a story for the birthday card workshop.
This serves the same purpose as the old HAWriters story and lets
others put drabbles they write in an easily accessible location. Enter
this story in the challenge for September drabbles, so we have all of
these in one place. (There are instructions on how to do all this at
the top of each thread in the Birthday Cards Forum; if you need help
just ask the Workshop Manager, Gwynnyd.)
Browse the prospective challenges
and perhaps there is one that inspires you.
Maybe you have an idea for a new challenge. Post it in the prospective
challenges and encourage others to join in the fun. Get five
interested writers and you have a challenge.
The Oldies: 7 for the Rivers of Gondor [Lefnui, Morthond, Ciril,
Ringló, Gilrain, Sernui, Anduin]
All OCs, All the Time [December 21, 2005]
Come on! Write outside your canon-comfort zone and delve into the
lives of the little people. But here are a few (hopefully inspiring)
prompts for you to muse on:
Tolkien has been known to give notoriously short shrift to women
and children. What would women's and children's lives be like in
various Middle-earth cultures and locations? One idea might be to
think about the wives, sisters, mothers, neighbors, and children of
minor characters (e.g. Elfhelm, Beregond, Haldir, etc.)
Is there a story back in "the mists of time" that you have always
wanted to hear or tell, but that involves few or no canon characters?
Think about the people "in the background" in any given scene: hobbits
or men at Bree, an elven attendant or musician in Imladris, or stable
boys in Edoras, a random orc on the march, for example. What are the
details of their lives? What kinds of things do they worry or dream about?
Explore a place or culture that's not given much "screen time" in
the books/films: what is daily life like in Harad or in a dwarven
hall, for example?
Religion in Middle-Earth [December 25, 2005]
Take something from a holy text in our modern world, and move it into
Middle-earth. For inspiration:
Have a Biblical figure meet a Middle-earth figure. Maybe Maglor
helps David write a psalm? Celeborn could teach Abraham a thing or two
about giving kingly gifts. Or Mohammed finds a relic from Harad.
Take a story from a religious text and recast it in Middle-earth.
Maybe you could draw a parallel between the Flood and the Akallabeth,
or Cain's banishment after murdering Abel and Maglor's wandering after
the theft of the two Silmarils.
Use a verse from a holy text to justify a character's action. Or
even just have them think it.
The Steward and the King [December 25, 2005]
Pick any aspect of the relationship between Aragorn and Faramir and
write about it. It could be personal, business, or whatever, but it
has to center on the King and his Steward. Did Faramir remember
Thorongil? Are they friends? Do they play chess?
Do they play mind games with the council members together? Do they
like to escape their duties by being Rangers again? The possibilities
Movieverse Essays [December 31. 2005]
Take a place where the books and the movies differ, and write an essay
comparing and contrasting the book with the movie. The idea isn't to
say one medium is "better" than the other, but to educate others that
there is a difference. If you can show how the difference affected the
movie as a whole, all the better. We all know Peter Jackson had to
make some changes to the book, but those changes did, well, change the
story line. An interesting essay could compare the books and the movies.
Harvest Home [December 31, 2005]
This has been reopened. There was much suffering and privation in
Middle Earth after the War of the Ring. Your challenge is to pick one
of the peoples of Middle Earth who had suffered such losses as a
result of the War of the Ring, and write about their first harvest season.
For our members who live in the southern hemisphere - that means
those of you in the land of Oz ;-) - it is spring that is in the air.
The fields are ready for planting; farmers are looking forward to the
next harvest. If you prefer to keep things seasonal, you may opt to
write about the challenges these people faced in preparing for that
first planting. With so many men gone, how did the women and children
cope? How did the old folks help out?
The word limit is 1500, be it prose or poetry.
What's in a Name [December 31, 2005]
One of the most fascinating aspects of Lord of the Rings are the
languages. From them spring the many beautiful names we all know and
love i.e. Galadriel, Faramir, Finduilas, etc.
Choose a character who has not had their name explained and
write a short story that gives their name a back story.
Quickies, 4th Quarter, 2005 [December 31, 2005]
The story should be at least one typewritten page long, but
not more than 3 typewritten pages.
Definition of page - 1" margin all the way around, Times 12 pt.
font., standard size paper.
There should be one viewpoint or one character as the main focus.
It should be one continuous scene.
A few prompts for inspiration:
Among those kneeling to the hobbits at the coronation is Elrond.
Elrond hasn't knelt to anyone since the First Age, when Gil-Galad --
who perished in battle with Sauron -- was his lord and king. What are
The first meeting of Tarannon and Berúthiel and her cats Somewhere in
Hollin, Gandalf tells Boromir something about Faramir that Boromir
never knew before.
HASA Challenges Team