Short Story

How do you write a short story?

You take a deep breath. This is the most important part. A wave of ideas flows into your mind. A concept, a character, a scene.

Now, you hold it in. Thoughts float freely inside your head, caged until they are ready. Some latch together, while others drift apart. Some are discarded, others held tight so that your memory does not lose them.

You exhale and words form on the page. The first paragraph is easiest, you already know what it will say. But as soon as it is written, it begs for a second and a third to follow it.

Here is the hardest part, where your breath comes fast and ragged, and ideas are thin on the ground. You begin to wonder who will read it, you only ever cared about the beginning.

You give up.


2 thoughts on “Short Story

  1. I’m right there with you, up until the exhale stage. Often, I have no idea what the first sentence or paragraph should be, but I usually know (sometimes vaguely) how the story is going to end. This occurs sometime during the holding it in stage, waiting for everything to congeal into some palatable form. Then, it’s a matter of either working backwards until I get to the beginning, or starting from the beginning and connecting an indeterminate number of dots until I reach the finish. Yeah, definitely easier than it sounds, and I have given up on occasion too. But, when a story is meant to be told, it will find its way on to the page – with much blood, sweat, tears – and a healthy dose of faith.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A good short story about short stories! (or is this flash fiction? there are too many terms for a collection of words nowadays).

    I have to say that the hardest is the first paragraph. Once that is down, I feel, the rest just ends up written. Starting is the hardest for me.

    Liked by 1 person

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