Chronicles of a Really Bad Day Anthology for Charity Vol: 1

I don’t know about you all, but there are days that I would have rather slept through, yesterday being one of them.  Nothing seemed to be going my way.  Every time I turned around, there was something that went wrong.  Yesterday took any sign of happiness as a threat to its existence.  It was the Monday kill-joy; a perpetual day of nothing but Murphy and his damnable law following me around like a black cloud.   Received bad news, an expensive heirloom keepsake was destroyed by a friend’s evil, sadistic, neurotic cat who spent his time hiding and channeling his inner tornado in the middle of the night.  He is described as the big black furry ball of dumb for good reason.  I was miserable from over-exerting myself while climbing a mountain with my kids (My limbs developed a voice reminiscent of grating icepicks across asphalt as they etched their disdain across my muscles).  I am also suddenly and very sadly reminded of my age and those crippling grey hairs are rearing their ugly heads upon my own!  Ugh!

Then don’t you love it when you get a brand new video game as a present to cheer you up and find out that your friend has already played it?  Then during the first hour and a half of trying to play this game, this friend narrates what you should do instead of actually allowing you to enjoy the game on your own terms.  I’m not sure if that sort of behavior was just nails on a chalkboard to me, or if I was oversensitive because the day had been going so horribly, or this was the dynamite candle on the cake.  Yeah…and that’s not even the half of it.  I think the only thing missing from yesterday were cops and a flaming bag of poo on my doorstep.

Perhaps a warning like this one would have prompted me to stay in bed, which I probably should have.

I can taste the red….

I have had a day when I got into an argument with a friend, didn’t sleep, dragged out of the house for a party I didn’t want to go to, and ended up stranded.  I’ve had a day when I got pulled over, received a shut-off notice, had an argument, found out that a friend ripped me off, and my children chose that day of all days to throw the world’s most impressive tantrum-tap dancing upon my very last nerve. I’ve been late for work during a winter storm because my car went into a ditch.  Waited three hours for help out of said ditch only to get a flat tire three quarters of the way home.  Waited another two hours for help and made it to work just in time to close shop.

We have all had those days.  The ones where we wished that we had stayed in bed with a good book and a glass of wine.  Those days kick our collective behinds.  When we hear of our friends having those sorts of days, we can’t help but consume ourselves with the feeling of schadenfreude mixed with empathy; we’ve all been there (we’re just glad its you and not us at the moment).

Thus, ‘The Chronicles of a Really Bad Day’ was born via the Nanowrimo group on Facebook.  Inspired by my series of crappy days, I decided to write a novella following a man who had about as good of luck as I had.  This novella ended up inspiring another writer to write one of her own.   From there, it inspired an anthology that welcomes all author’s take on the subject.  Murphy’s Law has on more than one occasion, bludgeoned us into submission and it sucks.  It reminds us of others who have it far worse, though, that’s the sad reality of it.

Kelly Nutting, John Murray McKay (author of The N Days series), and myself have begun the first steps in cultivating this anthology series through its Facebook page with other members on the Wrimo group.   We will maintain up-to-date information and guidelines for the anthology.  We welcome all writers, authors, poets, and wrimos to submit.  Proceeds will go toward a charity that will be voted upon by the community, but one that must help others; the individuals hit hard by circumstances or the economy.  Everyone could use some help every so often and sometimes people don’t have just one bad day, but a series of bad days.

Guidelines:

Poetry should be 36 lines max and should maintain the theme.

Short stories must be between 2,500 and 5,000 words.

Email submissions to writerzblock007@gmail.com, subject line should read ‘Chronicles of a Really Bad Day’.

Submission deadline to be announced.

We will hold a contest for the cover art.

If anyone would like to help us out with this anthology, contact one of the admins on the Facebook page.

If accepted, short stories and poetry will be edited via Writerz Block editing services.

Stories should elicit a feeling of schadenfreude, perhaps a good laugh, or maybe even horrify the reader into the reality that sometimes, life knocks you hard.   Any genre is welcome except erotica, but must maintain the theme of Murphy’s Law.  The aim is for this series to be a sort of ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ for adults (without the comics).  Maybe we’ll do a comic version in the future, who knows?

I love how this new adventure has inspired such creativity and support.  The idea of helping others through writing has surely made up for the Monday monstrosity.  Maybe this series of anthologies can make a difference in someone’s life as we help out others through their bad days with a smile and some much needed support.  Some ideas include St. Vincent de Paul and Salvation Army.  We welcome your suggestions!

Thank you all in advance for considering submitting a story.  We all look forward to reading them!  Happy Tuesday, and start writing!  Don’t forget to like ‘The Chronicles of a Really Bad Day’ on Facebook to receive regular updates.

UPDATE 9/7/14
Submission deadline is set to January 1, 2015.  Proceeds will go toward Saint Vincent de Paul and/or Salvation Army to help those facing financial hardship.  Stumped as to what to write about?  Think Murphy’s Law. 

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8 thoughts on “Chronicles of a Really Bad Day Anthology for Charity Vol: 1

  1. I’m sorry, as a journalist I am always very willing to get involved with a good “good cause” … and the intended beneficiaries of this idea are both “good causes”. But in hard-nosed marketing terms, how many people are likely to be ready to buy into an anthology of “really bad day” stories? If the answer will be “very few”, then where will the pay-off be? Maybe I’m out of touch with the moods of the times; perhaps a “New Happiness” I haven’t yet heard of where I am is “Floundering Around in a Pit of Deep Despair”. I really hate me when I turn cynical, but I don’t think this one can be escaped. If I’m going to put in three, four, five, six hours of thinking and writing to create a contribution to an anthology of anything, I’d like it to tick at least two boxes: [1] be reasonably certain to “pay off”; [2] leave readers with something happy-ish or constructively thoughtful to think about.

    I really am truly sorry …

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    • The intent is not to be all sorrowful and a collection of ‘poor me’ stories. The focus of literature is to provide a level of empathy ala ‘getting into the character’s head’. That is what is fantastic about multicultural literature (one of my passions, as a matter of fact, which is also the reason why I’m the Marketing Director for Miracle Ezine as well as a Communications/English major). We’ve all been there; we’ve all had really bad days. The thing is-bad days don’t last forever. Sometimes you can laugh at misfortune-sometimes you can read stories and have it hit you right in the feels-laughing through tears because you can RELATE to the characters and their circumstances. Its the author’s take on their idea of a bad day- I’ve had a number of submissions already with hopeful and entertaining themes. I respect your opinion, but I am guessing you hadn’t really thought of the different variations of the theme and how broad the theme can be. We’re not looking for a complete anthology with nothing but depressing stories. We’re looking for eclectic stories that would appeal to a lot of people.

      As for the monetary ‘pay-off’, I am a little sad by your response. The reason why nothing changes is because no one tries; they concern themselves more with the ‘pay out’ and whether or not throwing spare change in a jar will make a difference. If it doesn’t make a difference-those pennies and tiny balls of lint in our pockets-why do we even bother throwing it in when we pass by Salvation Army guys ringing the bells outside Walmart every year during the holidays? Every little bit counts and even if this anthology sells only one copy-the proceeds go to HELP other people. A few hours of work for the chance to maybe brighten someone’s day-give them hope, and maybe help buy a pound of meat for a starving family. If it isn’t worth it to you, then that’s okay. You may not see any gain from it or ‘profit’, but someone else may, and that is the whole intention of this project. If you’re writing for this anthology expecting to get famous for helping out a charity, you’re writing for this for the wrong reasons. We’d rather have genuine heartfelt writing than something that is forced. If its not worth it to you to contribute, don’t-and that’s okay.

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      • J:V: I very humbly acknowledge the totally generous reasonableness of what you write, except for the string of personal attacks on me But you, in your turn, have turned what I had written on its head.

        “… even if this anthology sells only one copy-the proceeds go to HELP other people.” My point was/is, if you were asking people to commit to an anthology that could be more certain to sell 1,000 copies … with people maybe chipping in more than the cover price because of the ‘good cause’ label (it happens) … wouldn’t that add up to very likely financing MORE HELP to MORE PEOPLE? And wouldn’t that be good? Am I so very wrong for thinking that a project with better marketing / revenue-generating potential would be heading in a better direction if the object is to raise money for a charity?

        I’m so glad you’ve already had submissions that you welcome. I hope you get many more. I’d like to say you’ll get one or two from me. But I don’t think that in all my years I’ve ever had a day that was bad enough to be worth writing about. But I’ll be pleased to buy a copy of the anthology if you’ll let me know how I can do that — that’s at least your one copy sold.

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        • Oh my goodness, there was no intent for sounding like an attack. The joys of written communication sometimes can come off sounding more harsh than intended. Couple that with the perception of the individual and all sorts of misunderstandings can occur. As this is a first-time venture (between myself and two other authors coordinating this), any input or suggestions would be greatly appreciated and we value everyone’s input. I would love to pick your brain if you have a chance. I was also hoping that contributors would help in the marketing. If this is a success and gets rolling, I was hoping that this could be a yearly anthology with the theme varying as we go along.

          As a suggestion, if you wouldn’t mind (that’s if you have a spare moment or are still inclined to participate) You could always maybe write a narrative about how you perceive bad days and perhaps slant it toward something more hopeful and uplifting. It also doesn’t have to be a first- hand account, either-maybe a fictional piece?

          Anyway, I apologize for the misunderstanding. I’m not sure if you have the time (I imagine your job keeps you quite busy) but if you’re interested in helping out with the mechanics of this anthology (marketing, developing, etc) we wouldn’t turn down the help. 🙂 The more people involved in this, the better, honestly. More people can bring in more ideas. Depending upon how many submissions we get for this anthology and how successful it is, we may want to think about a small submission fee which would also go to the charity.

          Writerz Block is more of an editing business with this project just being something on the side to help out the communities and spread the love of literature. Its also interesting to see what people come up with when given a theme to write about. As we all have our other responsibilities (like you said, perhaps lacking the 3-4 hours on a story for this project), the three of us also have our other projects we’re working on-our separate jobs, our lives, etc…

          Thank you for your input and you do make valid points. My phone number is on the blog so if you’re interested in helping out you’re welcome to call. Like I said, communication can be a pain in this format. Seriously though, don’t be shy-give me a holler tomorrow afternoon if you have a moment. I’ll keep a notebook handy in case. Any advice etc is really appreciated 🙂 Thank you again and sorry about that.

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