Friday, 28 March 2014

Out of Your Comfort Zone: A Guest Post by Sarah Butland

Talented author, Sarah Butland stops by today, to chat about her recent award-winning short story, and challenging yourself as a writer...

Out of Your Comfort Zone

We all have comfort zones and are simply ok in them but if you want to succeed it's important to get out of them once in a while.

Inspirational speaker and best-selling author Jack Canfield has a simple exercise to teach this. When you put your hands together, intertwining your fingers, you automatically put them the way you're most comfortable, if you purposely put them the other way it feels weird.

Challenge Accepted

I experienced this in a huge way when I was encouraged to submit to a children's category of a local writing contest. Without much time left before deadline and an infant at home, I thought it was an impossible task but decided to just go for it.

Inspired by a message from an amazing author and motivator, it just seemed like the best opportunity for me to see what I could do. Still remembering sitting in the kitchen while my son crawled on the floor at my feet (he was well cared for and learning to entertain himself) I brought up my laptop and wrote.

The maximum word count was 10000 words and I zoned out and wrote close to 4000, exhausting what I could do in that moment of inspiration.

And then I read it...

The situation itself was out of my comfort zone and I succeeded in writing something so unusual for what I would usually that I was shocked. A little nervous because of it being just half the maximum word count I decided to submit it with determination and as an experiment.

The experiment paid off and I won the contest and the interest in many of my writing idols as well as many more in the age group it was targeted to. The only problem – the readers wanted more and I had no idea where to take the story.

Take your challenge

Read a different genre, write about a troubling topic or go for a hike when you feel you're out of shape. Challenges don't have to be feared, they need to be embraced so you can add excitement to your life and change the outcome of your life.

And then come back and tell us all about it.

Thanks for reading,

Sarah Butland

PS: This fantasy story can be downloaded for free today for your Kindle at:

Blood Day : the Short Story

Writers Federation of New Brunswick award winning short story for the children/ young adult category, Blood Day was created out of a looming deadline, a bit of encouragement and dedication to writing a story.

I've always been told we all bleed red, take breaths, and die if poisoned so I often wondered why I wasn't dead yet.
In this glimpse of the life of someone who just isn't what the books say she should be, we try to understand what it means to be human, a person and fit in with the expectations that surround us.

Blood Day contains more science fiction than is to be expected from Sarah Butland, the mystery of a world we don't know is strong enough to make this a brilliant read.


Sarah Butland said...

Thanks so much for hosting! I hope all of your readers enjoy and get something out of this.

Thanks for reading,

Sarah Butland

A. F. Stewart said...

It's always a delight to have you as a guest.

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