Friday, February 15, 2013

Flash Fiction

Do you want to write a short, short story? Try writing what's known as flash fiction. This is a story generally told in about 500 words. I'm interested in expanding my writing styles by adding flash fiction to my repertoire.

For flash fiction, choose a moment in a character's life that you can tell a lot about them in a short amount of time. This could be telling a story in the amount of time it takes someone to ride the bus to work, sit through a 60 minute class, or sitting in a doctor's office. It shouldn't be the life story of a character. Save that for longer forms of fiction.

Outline your beginning, middle and end. It helps to put it down on paper when you begin to edit out the extraneous parts.

Begin to write. Write a concise beginning that shouldn't be more than a couple of paragraphs, if that long. Long explanations and multiple character development should be saved for longer stories. Your ending should be a resolution for the character and as like the beginning, it should be short and concise. One paragraph.

Edit everything out of the story that isn't essential to understanding the setting, the action, or the feelings of the character. You can also remove modifiers that aren't necessary such as "very," "quite," and "actually." Be intentional about every word in the story. Make each word count.

With these thoughts in mind and some of your own, if you haven't tried flash fiction, now might be the time. I know I will be experimenting with it from now on and I'll be posting my results on this blog. Good luck!

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