Writing Challenge: Waiting Under the Tree

The last of the turkey leftovers are finally being finished off, and homeowners across the continent are throwing off the restraint that just barely kept their holiday home decorating in check. That’s right, it’s December and the most wonderful time of the year is just around the corner!

Christmas, for those who celebrate it, is a momentous, heartwarming occasion to spend with friends and family, but it’s also a stressful one. For many of us, one of the primary sources of stress lies in the holiday’s central tradition: gifts.

Gifts that have to be bought…


…and then given, without any guarantee that the recipient will even like it!

The gift that we’ve chosen to give to you is one final writing challenge before 2019 comes to a close. You have three to five paragraphs to describe your hero or heroine bestowing their true love with a token of their affection. Whether or not they’re successful is entirely up to you!

I’ve tried to push your creativity these past few months, so for this challenge I’d like the gift to be something that’s hard to wrap. This may seem quite subjective to the wrapping paper whizzes (as well as the less adept) among you, but try to take it at face value.

This is a chance to think of all the presents you may have wanted to give, and all the ones you wished you were given! Gift giving may not be your love language, but it’s one you’ll have to try writing.

Your deadline is the end of the day, Sunday, December 8th, 2019. The following day we’ll take a look at the submissions and announce our Editors’ Choice Top 3, so be sure to check back and see if you were one of the lucky winners!

UPDATE: Our gift this season was 19 incredible submissions to read through, and we enjoyed every single one. After a short discussion we were able to narrow our Editors’ Choice Top 3 to these wonderful writers:

In 1st Place is Sam, whose submission featured a delightful fakeout, as well as an adorable puppy!

Joice snagged 2nd Place by describing a grand, sweeping gesture, while also providing a little history lesson at the same time.

3rd Place belongs to Wendy, since the mental image of this man lugging a four-foot tall cactus almost made me laugh out loud.

You all really committed to the conceit of having the gift be difficult (or impossible!) to wrap, and from tattoos to pickup trucks, you truly delivered. We also loved the sentiment that some of the best gifts are puppies and babies, someone to love you back as much as you love them.

This marks my last post (and final writing challenge) for 2019. There’s more of both in the next year, and I can’t wait to see you all then!

-Evan Yeong