Short Story Writing

A short story can be fun to write, but a writer has to be very judicious with words to describe the characters and the story line. I remember in school having to do those dreaded 1000 word essays. I would carefully try to pad the document with extra words rather than actually say anything significant about the topic. I didn’t get top marks from my English teacher in those days, but she also had a way of turning literature into something the class hated.

Today 1000 words are easy for me to write. Too easy if you’re interested in conserving words for a short story. For example try to describe yourself in fifty words. Now try to do it in one sentence.  In Castle One I described one of the characters like this; “Jon was a big man, and not soft, but he didn’t scare anyone when he entered a room.” 

The reason I mention all this is that I’m writing a story and the words just seem to keep adding up. I wanted to keep it around 50,000 words, a novelette. It now looks like it will hit 60,000. That’s not too bad but I know if I wrote it the same way as I do short stories I can chop of the extra 10,000 words. Those old essay habits are coming back to haunt me. 

So I am going to write a short story or two to get my focus back on being stingy with words. There is a contest for a short paranormal story at All Romance, 2500 to 3000 words. I just have to find a theme to write about. I might use the old stand-by, vampires.

It would be interesting if one of my old teacher as judging the contest. I’ll know if it is her if my submission is returned with a big red F circled on it. 

This is a picture of my old grade school Spruce Avenue School. It is where I learned lots of things, such as there are great teachers and horrible teachers. I had a few of each and despite my English teacher’s best effort, I passed.  Anyway all is forgiven because maybe her words drove me a bit harder to succeed as a writer.

Spruce Avenue School

4 Responses to “Short Story Writing”

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