Let’s Talk About the Writer’s Games- Group challenge!

As Round 1 of the Writer’s Games- the Individual Portion, simmers to a close tonight, the flames of friendly competition are already being fanned for Round 2- the Group Portion!

In case you blinked and missed it, over the past 7 weeks, hundreds of individual participants have written 7 short stories in 72 hrs as part of the Writer’s Games! If you can believe it, they each received personalized feedback from multiple judges, on each of their 7 short stories! Winning entries will be featured in the Writer’s Games anthology, to be published and sold later this year!

In this round, however, participants will work in Groups to conceive an idea for the weekly prompt, then plan, write, and edit their entry. An elected Team Leader will submit the entry on behalf of the team, and then the judging begins. Just as with the Individual portion, each Group will get personalized feedback on each entry from multiple judges, and the winning Team’s entry will be published in the Writer’s Workout Anthology later this year!

I know what you’re thinking, “I really want to join but I don’t have a group of my own!”. No Team? No problem! Here are three ways you can get on board:

  • Join an open team
  • Create your own team (of 7-12 members)
  • Leave it up to chance by selecting the “I NEED a team!” option. Balanced groups are carefully curated by the Writer’s Workout team based on participants’ strengths/weaknesses.  (Insider scoop: the two-time reigning Group champs, The Red Herrings, were one of these chance teams!)
Although Groups can have as many as 12 members, there is absolutely no room for spectators! Each team member is expected to pull his/her weight to produce consistent, on-theme submissions which read with one voice!
Here’s some important information to keep in mind:

The Who: The Writer’s Workout

The What: The Writer’s Games 2017- Team Portion

The When: Group Games Registration begins: July 1

Group Games begin: August 4

Anthology published: exact date tbd Fall/Winter 2017!

The How: Visit the Website or Follow the Writer’s Workout and the Writer’s Games on Twitter. Their Facebook page is very active, and the admin are incredibly responsive!

Watch this space to register from July 1! Who’s in?!

Pacemaker goes to the Bank!

A few months ago Pacemaker went to the Gym! This week, we’re going to the Bank!

If you can use Pacemaker to track how much you write or read, or even run or train, why not how much you can save or even spend as well?!

Here are 3 ways to save, let’s say, $1000 in 3 months:

With the Rising to the Challenge strategy, I’ll save anywhere between $1 on the low end, and $21 on the high end, each day for 3 months, while Oscillating will have me saving between $6 and $17 daily. With Steadily though, I’ll tuck away about $11 each day.

You can play around with it yourself, here.

But then, of course, I’m me and not someone else who’s particularly diligent at saving! So it may not be realistic for me to accept a schedule which asks me to put something aside every single day for 3 months. This isn’t impossible, but it is improbable, at least for me because, you know: birthdays, bakeries, general indiscipline… bakeries). SO here’s that plan another 3 ways, this time, more realistically for me:

This Rising to the Challenge plan, starts me off easy with very low daily saving amounts, and allows me to skip my birthday week, and weekends. The most I ever have to save on any day is $35. I think I can manage that for 3 months.


Meanwhile this Oscillating plan will allow me to once again skip saving during my birthday week and on weekends, but I only have to set aside between $9 and $25 on saving days, to reach the same 1K goal in 3 months.


On the other hand, this plan allows me to Steadily work towards my savings goal by setting aside roughly the same amount every day. Even with skipping my birthday week and weekends again, with about $17/saving day, I can still hit that 1K goal in 3 months.


As usual, Pacemaker is showing me that whether little by little, or a lot by a lot, getting to my goal is possible!

So! Do you think Pacemaker can help you create savings plans? Or maybe you’ve thought of other quantitative goals you’d like to see incorporated, or even a write-in option? Just let us know! If there’s enough interest, we just might do it!

Through the Looking Glass- We Are Outsiders

My sister and I have been working on Pacemaker for over 4 years now. What started as a very basic way to manage a Masters thesis word count has become so much more!  Over the years, diverse groups of people have discovered the tool and, through their feedback and support, Pacemaker has metamorphosed into what it is today! We’re seeing authors, translators, students, professors, hobbyists, to name a few, using the Pacemaker tool to track everything from their software coding, Duolingo lessons and school assignments, to NaNoWriMo novels, comic strips and even prayers!

However, as much as we fashioned Pacemaker from our own academic experiences, we recognize that we are outsiders to the literary professional world. We couldn’t tell you how to publish a book or how to edit a magazine article. Learning a new language? We’re no experts! We couldn’t even tell you the best way to get from point A to point B in your process. What we can do though, is show you a couple googol ways to get there!

Sometimes it feels very much like peering through the looking glass, and stepping into a fantastical world of creativity that we would never have access to on our own. Lucky for us, the natives in this world have been exceptionally friendly, and have guided us through the creative terrain to help us create a tool which is both proactive and reactive! And we see tangible possibilities for other developments on the horizon- fitness tracking, money tracking etc. We are so grateful that: Pacemaker is being molded by YOUR experience and desires. Click To Tweet

That doesn’t mean we come to the looking glass empty-handed though! Outside perspectives can be healthy, and help shine some light on certain things to which familiarity may have blinded insiders. So don’t worry, we’ll never journey with you empty-handed. We’ll strive to bring the following to the looking glass with us every time:

  • Fresh Eyes – connections with other issues, fields and domains. Together, we have backgrounds in international law, software development, public administration, communications, international relations and more.
  • Willingness to listen – we know we aren’t experts in your craft. We listen carefully and then ask “What if?” and “Why not?”. We don’t know what’s a stupid question yet 🙂 so we’ll ask it anyway.
  • Willingness to spend hours understanding everything you may take for granted in your industry – sprints, timers, publicizing your book, the importance of NaNoWriMo and camp NaNoWriMo, the translation industry, the life of a freelance literary professional etc. These are all new and fascinating to us, and we’re eager to learn more!
  • Critique! – This may make some folks uncomfortable but we hate waste, and when we see it, we’ll call it out nicely 🙂 but we will listen to learn when we are way off.

Thank you for being our looking glass guides over these years! We hope that at the end of each foray, you can say you’ve helped us help you!

Remember, User suggestions drive Pacemaker updates! So, if you see something you'd like added, say something! Click To Tweet If it’s feasible to do so, we’ll implement it right away, other suggestions take more time, and others need a bit more refining before we can commit. But we take every suggestion seriously! E-mail us, get in touch on Twitter, Facebook or Tumblr (we try as much as possible to be where you are on the internet), or contact us directly using any of the options on our Contact bar at the bottom of each Pacemaker page.