Anyway, I decided to try some Flash pieces as a way of catching up. Except, with my writing style, it is VERY hard for me to tell a story in 1000 words or less. In fact, the two flash fiction pieces I did do this week ended up at 998 and 1000 words on the nose. I’ll take every bloody word I can :)
The trick is to create a personality for your main character and to avoid twists and turns until the end. I think. First person helps a lot to give your character an interesting voice or if you need/like third person, keeping a tight POV and staying out of your character’s head can do the same thing.
Why stay out of your character’s head? Well, that’s normally a great way to build/reveal character. Only in flash fiction, you don’t have words to waste. I’m serious. You need to have every sentence bearing directly on the plot and it had better reveal character as well. Spare words can be spent on worldbuilding.
Hm. A word on that. Worldbuilding in flash fiction is even more frelling hard, so I’m setting most of my stories modern day to leverage all the associations we 21st century monkeys have. You can get a lot of milage out of specific details like ‘Starbucks’ or ‘Glock’ if you use a contemporary setting. It’s a shame, since I mostly prefer fantastic settings but…eh…flash is what it is. I can see why Sci-fi Flash Fiction is in demand. Because it’s frelling harder.
Anyway, I’m also working on some longer stories in conjunction with the flashes. I do a flash fiction piece, take a break, then go to work on a longer 4 or 5k story where I can breathe a little. Seems to be working ok though I’m still squandering my early morning writing time. Hopefully I can focus more.
Other news, my story “Therium 99” might be getting some wider exposure in an anthology. Not a ton of $ but very glad to hear it. I’m also needed to send out another wave of story submissions as I think I only have one story currently out awaiting rejection. I’m doing ok at writing but submitting? Man, I suck at that. Need to close the loop. Keep that in mind all the rest of you: write, revise, then submit. Don’t stress out, don’t even think about it. Just do it.
Now, as usual, we’ll see if I can take my own advice.