I have a couple of short stories that are basically just dialogue and philosophical-ish stuff, such as “There’s no such thing as good or bad.” “Then why do we have laws? Why do we have prisons and juries?” “ Tell me, are you good because you fight against your enemies? Are your enemies bad because they harm you? We are only sides in a conflict.” “If we and our enemies are not good nor bad, then why do we have rules? Why do we consider some people madmen if they believe murder is okay?” And so on, is this considered a story or…?

  • How could any Answer not depend on the particular content? Didn't half the Greek philosophers still famous from 2-3,000 years ago use 'just dialogue and philosophical-ish stuff' to put their points across? How could it be wrong to have characters discussing their memories of or conclusions about events? Mar 2 at 20:29

3 Answers 3


I have seen places where these are called stories and other places they aren't. This is a question that comes to personal opinion.

Personally, I don't believe they are. A story is supposed to tell a story. Stories can give historical information or raise philosophical questions, but at the core it's supposed to tell a story. From what I can see, that's not what you have.

Well then, what have you written? How you describe your philosophical works makes me think of one thing, Socrates. Socrates philosophical discussions were written down for us to read by his student Plato in what are called dialogs.(You can find them here: https://www.platonicfoundation.org/)

And there you have it, you have written a dialog.


I agree with Ben that the definition of a story can be vague. If you have some content you think others might find interesting, you should organize it all together. Come up with a title that accurately describes the contents of the book, for instance, 'Notes from the Far Reaches of My Mind.' Once you have organized and titled it and found your cover art, you can publish it on KDP. This is just my personal opinion. Even if nobody buys it, you can still say that you are a published author and have a book available on Amazon. It doesn't cost anything except for your time. And it's always something that you can tell yourself that you accomplished. No regrets! Good Luck in your journey.


There is no clear definition of what a story is. The common denominator of most definitions is "an account of imaginary or real people and events". In that sense, your writings are certainly stories: they tell of what certain people did – talk. So, what you describe, is definitely a narrartive.

Your narratives don't seem to fit most expectations of a short story, though. There doesn't seem to be much of a plot (Walpole), nothing much seems to be happening besides people philosophizing, they don't present a slice of life (Chekov), just dialogue un-embedded in the everyday life of the speakers, there is no episodic or anecdotal effect (Azhikode ), and so on.

I would rather categorize your texts as dialogues in the tradition of philosopical dialogues (Plato).

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