- Have you signed up for the Slice of Life Story Challenge for the first time?
- Are you thinking about signing up for the Challenge, but just aren’t sure?
- Are you trying to convince some friends or colleagues to join you for our annual March writing marathon?
If you answered YES to any of the above questions, then this post is for you!
The 15th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge begins on Tuesday, March 1st. Through the years, we’ve received many questions from new(er) participants. Here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions we receive:
QUESTION: What are your best tips to help me be successful with the Challenge?
ANSWER: Watch this video for five quick tips.
As you heard, Melanie mentioned ways to come up with ideas if you get stuck looking for something to write about. Come back to TWT next Monday when Betsy Hubbard, one of our other co-authors, will share additional strategies for coming up with things to write about.
QUESTION: Do I have to have a blog to participate in the Slice of Life Story Challenge?
ANSWER: Yes. Your blog should be open to comments so other Slicers (That’s what we call the people who participate in this writing challenge.) can support you on your writing journey.
It doesn’t take long to start a blog. It’s also free! I’m partial to WordPress. Blogger and Edublogs are also good options. (You should note some folks have had ongoing issues leaving comments on Blogger blogs — because of the Captcha images — from their mobile devices.) Click here for a blog post I wrote a few years ago about how to create your blog.
QUESTION: Where will I place the link to my blog?
ANSWER: Every day in March, there will be a call for slice of life stories at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time. You will place the permalink to your blog post in the comment section of that day’s blog post. Here’s an example from last year: https://twowritingteachers.org/2021/03/01/day-1-sol21.
Please do NOT link on this page, https://twowritingteachers.wordpress.com/challenges/, which is our Slice of Life Information Page. Comments left on that page will not be seen by other Slicers.
QUESTION: Do I submit my posts on the Two Writing Teachers Blog? Can I submit my link via Twitter using the #SOL22 hashtag?
ANSWER: You must link up on Two Writing Teachers daily. Twitter is optional. If you wish to Tweet the link to your slice of life post on Twitter, you may use the #SOL22 hashtag so other Slicers will see your post on Twitter as well.
QUESTION: What should I write when I leave the permalink to my slice of life story?
ANSWER: Write a short teaser and leave the link to your blog post. Here’s an example:
Every blog post you publish will have a unique URL, which we refer to as a permalink. Please share daily with your permalink, rather than leaving a link to your blog. To find this link: click on the title of your blog post. The permalink will appear in your browser. Copy that entire link so you can paste it into your comment when you leave a link to your slice of life story on Two Writing Teachers.
QUESTION: Why do I need to share a story?
ANSWER: The word story is in the full name of the Challenge. Stories have been at the heart of this Challenge since it began in 2008. To learn more about the significant ways stories have connected members of this community through the years, watch one or both of these videos:
QUESTION: What should I do if my comment is held for moderation after I leave the teaser and permalink to my slice of life story?
ANSWER: If you’ve never posted a comment on TWT before, or if your comment contains more than one hyperlink, then your comment will be held for moderation. The co-author team monitors blog comments several times a day so we can approve comments that don’t post automatically. Therefore, there is no need to submit your comment multiple times if it doesn’t appear after you click “post comment.”
If you use the same username/email to log in when you leave your comment, your comments should appear instantly in the future.
On occasion, a Slicer’s comment is marked as spam by WordPress. Recently, our site has received thousands of spam comments each week, making it difficult for our team to monitor when real comments are sent to spam.
During March, if you believe your comment inadvertently went to spam, please message the TWT co-author whose responsible for Slicers with the first letter of your last name. (E-mail addresses are at the bottom of this post.) Send the co-author the approximate time you left your comment so she can fish your comment out of spam.
QUESTION: I participate in other online challenges, like Poetry Friday and #IMWAYR. Do I post one slice and one other post or can my post for that meme serve as my slice of life story on that day?
ANSWER: We encourage people to continue taking part in memes they love. However, these challenges are separate posts from the SOLSC. We prefer posts that do not overlap.
QUESTION: Can you explain how commenting on other writers’ blogs works?
ANSWER: We’ve never set rules like “comment on the previous three commenters’ posts” or “comment on the person who posted before you.” We do not want to mandate who people should connect with. Just because you like to post at 8:00 p.m., doesn’t mean the people who posted from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. will have written posts that will resonate with you.
Typically, people write a short teaser about their slice of life story when they leave a comment. Read those teasers. That might help you decide whose blog posts to read.
QUESTION: What if I need tech support?
ANSWER: If you have tech-related questions during the Challenge, you may contact Beth Moore at beth[at]elizabethmoore[dot]work.
Some final notes & our contact information:
- If you haven’t read about how to join our writing community, which is a post that contains an overview of essential information about the Challenge, click here to read it now.
- Should you have questions about getting started with this Challenge, please direct your question to the appropriate coauthor:
- Individual SOLSC:
- If your last name begins with the letters A – F, please email questions to Amy Ellerman at ellermanamy[at]gmail.com.
- If your last name begins with the letters G – L, please email questions to Betsy Hubbard at betsymhubbard[at]gmail.com.
- If your last name begins with the letters M – Q, please email questions to Beth Moore at beth[at]elizabethmoore.work.
- If your last name begins with the letters R – U, please email questions to Melanie Meehan at meehanmelanie[at]gmail.com.
- If your last name begins with the letters V – Z, please email questions to Stacey Shubitz at stacey[at]staceyshubitz.com.
- Classroom SOLSC:
- If you have any questions, please email questions to Kathleen Neagle Sokolowski at mrs.sokolowski[at]gmail.com.
- Individual SOLSC:
See you on Tuesday, March 1st!