Channel Your Inner ONJ-(#MWWC7)


Last month I decided to join a group of very talented wine writers in a monthly creative writing challenge centered around…you guessed it…wine.  The competition began six months ago around the idea that it is easy to get bogged down in the facts and figures of wine writing.  The Drunken Cyclist thought it would be both unifying and inspiring to have a themed writing challenge and MWWC was born.

I was blown away to find that I won last month’s competition based on the theme, Mystery.  Apparently my encounter with the host with the most and his “friends” resonated.  What is the prize?  Having the honor of hosting the next month’s challenge.  That means coming up with a theme, broad but not too broad, that will inspire other writers to write, fiction or non-fiction.  So, after much thought…

If you look at the title and you’re a TLA (three-letter acronym) genius, you may have already guessed.

This month’s theme is…Devotion.  Get it?  Olivia Newton-John?  Yes, I went there.

Now before you ban me for gifting that lovely little earworm and visions of poodle skirts and John Travolta, let me explain.

Since February is coming, that means Valentine’s Day isn’t far behind.  I didn’t want to go cliché and ostracize Hallmark cynics with “romance.”  But I wanted to give opportunity for you to turn up the Andrea Bocelli and let the wine and syrup flow if so inclined.

But devotion…that’s a concept we can all get behind, no?  Maybe you are devoted to turning you hobby into a career and spend endless hours of your free time developing that dream.  Perhaps you stay home with your children and give up hours of sleep, pour out every bit of patience (and then some) and give them your last bites.  Maybe you are caring for a loved one, building a start-up, spending your weekends mentoring.  You can take the idea way beyond cupids and smooches.  Or not.

I’ve copied DC’s rules and am using his timeline as a guide.  I may or may not have time to write something original, but when I thought about the idea, I though about an angle I may want to develop.  If you’re new to SAHMmelier, you’ve not likely read the story of how I began writing.  I took the story of a favorite winery, six generations of devotion, and created a poem to tell that story through the life-cycle of the vine.  Sometimes devotion is diamonds and roses and sometimes it is soil and sweat.  I look forward to reading your take on the topic.

And thank you.  Thank you for voting for my piece and for entertaining and inspiring with yours.

The rules

    1. Write a post based on this month’s theme: “Devotion”.
    2. The post should be at least tangentially related to wine (after all, it is the name of the challenge!).
    3. The post should be more or less around 1000 words (I’m not one for hard and fast rules)
    4. Include the Monthly Wine Writing Challenge badge that was designed by the very first winner, The Armchair Sommelier.
    5. Once you post on your blog, link back to this post (or somehow notify me), and I will be sure to include a link here as well as on all subsequent posts about this month’s challenge.
    6. It would be great if you tweet a link using the hashtag #MWWC7.
    7. Remember to vote!

The all important dates:

Deadline for submission:  Monday, February 17th, 2014

Voting Begins: Tuesday, Febraury 18th, 2014

Voting Ends:  Monday, February 24th, 2014

Winner Announced:  Tuesday, February 25th, 2014

Previous winners:

If you’re looking for some inspiration here are the links to the previous winning posts:

MWWC1 – Transportation

The Armchair Sommelier

MWWC2 – Trouble

My Custard Pie

MWWC3 – Possession

The Wine Kat

MWWC4 – Oops

Confessions of a Wine Geek

MWWC5 – Feast

The drunken cyclist

MWWC6 — Mystery


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Being a stay- at-home mom can leave one thirsting for a taste of the outside world, a world in which sentences are composed of more than three words. Being an educator means one is always seeking an opportunity to explore and learn. Being a woman with a need to connect can be a challenge when adult conversations are rare. In wine, I find the marriage of art and science, agriculture and storytelling provides limitless areas to explore. But it is the people that keep me engaged. The tenacity needed to keep the family dream alive, the risk to start anew, the trials and principles. I love the history of the vine, the impact of a season, the sentiment in the bottle. That is why I write. I write to tell their stories, to share a piece of mine. I write to learn as I teach others. I write to connect with new friends, to disconnect from the world. I write to celebrate what makes each of us unique, and that which ties us together.

53 thoughts on “Channel Your Inner ONJ-(#MWWC7)

  1. Reblogged this on SAHMmelier and commented:

    So, one thing is clear in the #MWWC7 Challenge. I am doing a poor job as host. I’ve been remiss in reminders and promotions. I apologize. I’m knee-deep in tile samples and cabinet quotes. I’ve been shaping satin and amking pin-the-nose on Olaf games for my daughter’s Frozen birthday party. My creative juices are running dry, but hopefully things are different for you. Hopefully you’re using the snowdrifts and arctic attacks as fuel for your writing fire.

    You’ve got one week to show us what stirs your devotion. Or someone else’s. Or maybe you can just talk about what you drink when you watch Sandy serenade Danny. For some inspiration, check out Foxress’ love of Madeira on her blog, From Vinho Verde to Barolo with Love.

    Send me your links when you have them and I’ll post below. In the meantime, stay warm and wish me luck on my attempt to sew an Elsa dress.


  2. Ah…this will be a challenging theme for me. The moment I finished scrolling down to here while reading some of the comments, I have two concepts in mind, so it will be challenging for me to choose between them. Wish me luck! Meanwhile, we (here in Asia) will be welcoming and celebrating the Year of the Horse on Friday. HAPPY LUNAR NEW YEAR to all. Huat Ah! (means Prosperity in jubilation)


      1. no, not yet. Outside of the very first MWWC (Transportation), it really takes me time to settle the theme down and find my angle. Somehow, devotion has mostly a religious connotation for me, so it will definitely take me time to find the path to the vine…


      2. Don’t dig it any deeper. It is induced by reading mostly (only) technical, sci-fi and wine books. So it is primarily my vocabulary limitation…


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