Freestyle Writing Challenge No4


I was nominated by Karen of the blog ‘In a Small Compass‘ to take part in this writing challenge. This was an interesting one, because there is no fiction writing involved, and so in it, I reveal a little more about me, and my background. Unfortunately, I ran out of time halfway through a sentence… oh well, that’s how it goes, and so here it is…

Karen’s challenge was;


I am lucky enough to live in beautiful rural Ireland. Co Cavan is completely underestimated. It has mountains, lakes – one for each day of the year, so they say, and I well believe it – long rivers, hills and many trees, historic buildings, ancient archaeology and plenty of myths and legends… it’s the perfect place for me.

I haven’t always lived in the country. Before I moved to Ireland, I lived in Guildford, Surrey in England and commuted into the heart of London every day to work. Although some might say that a place like London doesn’t have a heart.

I spent a lot of time with friends in London, and it’s a great city, fun, vibrant, busy, exciting. But it’s not a place I’d choose to live. I remember coming home to Guildford every night, and my nose would be black with all the smog I’d breathed in. That’s not for me.

City life can be great, though, if it’s the right city. I lived in Bristol for a year. I loved Bristol. It was trendy, full of students, and had great bars and restaurants. The streets were lined with beautiful Georgian houses. For a city, it was quite laid back.

Moving from a city to the Irish countryside was certainly a huge culture shock. If you wanted a supermarket, or a cinema, or a new outfit, you had to drive a minimum of half an hour away to the next town, never mind tumbling out your door and strolling down the street. It took some getting used to.

But those things were never that important to me. Here, there is a small friendly community, no traffic jams, and so much space and light. At night, it is so dark because there are no streetlights; you can’t see your hand in front of your face, but you can see the stars. That’s what matters

10 minutes – 315 words

As you know, I have already taken part in a few of these challenges already, so I’m not going to nominate anyone… I think I’ve run out of people to tag, everyone’s tagged everyone else by now, so we’ve probably all taken part lol! But for anyone who hasn’t yet participated, consider yourself nominated, and here are the rules and my challenge to you!

The rules for the challenge:

  1. Open a blank document.
  2. Set a stop watch or your mobile phone timer to 5 or 10 minutes, whichever challenge you prefer.
  3. Your topic is at the foot of this post BUT DO NOT SCROLL DOWN TO SEE IT UNTIL YOU ARE READY WITH YOUR TIMER!!!
  4. Once you start writing do not stop until the alarm sounds!
  5. Do not cheat by going back and correcting spelling and grammar using spell check (it is only meant for you to reflect on your own control of sensible thought flow and for you to reflect on your ability to write with correct spelling and grammar.)
  6. You may or may not pay attention to punctuation or capitals.
  7. At the end of your post write down “# of words = ____” to give an idea of how much you can write within the time frame.
  8. Do not forget to copy paste the entire passage on your blog post with a new topic for your nominees and copy paste these rules with your nomination (at least five (5) bloggers).

So, are you up for it? Your challenge from me is…






Tell us about your favourite outfit… is it your wedding dress? An 80s new romantic confection? A simple pair of jeans that you cannot be parted with? What’s so special about this clothing, and why?

12 Comments on “Freestyle Writing Challenge No4

  1. London indeed, I didn’t know that. What a culture change and it’s not everyone could embrace the rural life. I think I could, given an internet connection and a decent pub within walking distance. Now you mention it I do recall the intense darkness in West Cork on my early trips there after the bright lights of Birmingham.


    • That intense darkness can seem quite suffocating at first, to not be able to see your hand when you can feel it right in front of your nose feels quite scary, like sensory deprivation. Unfortunately, lots of pubs lol but none in walking distance… We’re really rural! And the internet connection is very dodgy, I’ve experienced much better in the back of beyond third world countries! Welcome to the REAL Ireland lol!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well, it takes all sorts. I’ve gone the other way from deep countryside via Bristol to London and I wouldn’t go back. I do admit to a guilty not so secret which is we also have a little place in deepest Suffolk, now the children are old enough to look after themselves, which is like our trip to the theatre or whatever. But for a daily life, give me a city.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The place you live sounds enchanting. Interesting post, Ali. When you’re young, the city holds lots of delights but once you are raising a family, your interests change. Do you still go to the city to theater and such?
    I like going to a cottage once in a while but I’m a small town girl. Bugs love me but I don’t love them.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you very much for accepting my challenge, Ali.
    Reading your lines is like looking through your eyes. Thank you very much for enriching our world by sharing your non-fictional and fictional stories.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Loved the line about not seeing your hand in the dark, but being able to see the stars…what a poetic description. I only experienced that when we used to camp in the Utah desert…away from any town or city lights. It was surreal. ❤️ Lovely challenge response.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! We have no street lights here where I live, so the stars look amazing on a clear night, and I have now got used to the intensity of darkness. Camping under a night sky in Utah must have been fab!

      Liked by 1 person

      • It was so hard to describe…the closest I could get was that it was like really bad dandruff on a solid black shirt !! I’m sure there’s a more aesthetically pleasing one..that’s all I could come up with at the time. ☺

        Liked by 1 person

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