The Tuesday 200s started many many moons ago, when I was in one of the writing classes I’ve taken with the estimable Shaun Levin. If you like writing, or reading for that matter, he’s definitely your go-to guy for either; the antithesis to “those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.”
I write a 200-word piece, prompted by something within the previous story. They started out as a weekly thing within my then-current blog, bobzyeruncle. I originally said I’d do 20, and went beyond that. After a while, they (I?) lost steam and I never really went back to them. Until now.
During one of Shaun’s classes, a lovely (and talented) woman named Lynne Rees read from Messages, a book she co-authored with the equally lovely/talented Sarah Salway.
Messages was written as a collaborative creative writing project. As the preface states:
Using email, 300 pieces of exactly 300 words were exchanged in total, each one returned within a limit of 72 hours. Links were made creatively – words, theme, character, object, form, or even mood. The project took eighteen months to create.
The pieces she read were fascinating. Some short fictions, a set of lists, as well as poems from a separate collection. There were no boundaries in the Messages project, except to make a link, any link, and get them back to each other within 3 days.
As I was sitting and listening, I got inspired.
Why not do Tuesday 200s? A 200-word piece every Tuesday, hopefully each a self-contained contained tale — or at least a reasonable snippet. I’ll make some type of link each week from the previous week’s post. I’ll do it for at least 20 weeks (I guess 200 would be cooler, but I don’t know if I’m ready to commit to a 4-year project).
To celebrate the 2nd printing of Messages, Lynne and Sarah created a mini-messages writing project, and selected several of the pieces written for that to be published in an anthology entitled Your Messages, which I’m honored to be included in.