Questions tagged [short-story]

Use this tag for questions about short stories. Do not use this tag for questions about novellas, flash fiction, or other types of short fiction.

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2
votes
6answers
92 views

Misspelling and punctuation how to improve?

Love telling/writing stories except I am the absolute worst at both spelling along with punctuation. Normally I care less about these things because I can still read them although many people get ...
0
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0answers
56 views

Cons of Extensive Detailing [duplicate]

Every time I start a story, I create the scene in my mind. I'm pretty sure others would be able to write it in 2000 words. However, once I start writing, I detail every scene way too much and the end ...
1
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1answer
26 views

Formatting a story collection for submission to publishers

Anyone know of a definitive online resource on formatting a story collection for submission to publishers and agents? One knotty question in particular: does one use the title of the book throughout ...
0
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2answers
40 views

Does this sentence make sense grammatically? Is there anything I can do to improve it? [closed]

"The meticulously placed masses of skin under her eyes were captured involuntarily by the customary light fixtures of the hospital ward, sufficiently polluted with the indistinct clamour of her ...
3
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5answers
626 views

How can I begin writing a short story?

I like to read short stories, novels, documentaries etc. I used to write a diary as well. I am interested in beginning to write a short story or some other form of creative writing. But I struggle to ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

Literary magazines that publish surreal/absurdist fiction?

Does anybody know of any literary magazines that publish surreal/absurdist fiction? I have a short story I'm looking to submit. The closest comparisons I can think of are A Clockwork Orange, Brave New ...
2
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3answers
47 views

Where can I find a beta reader for grammatical issues?

I’m looking forward to finding a beta reader to help getting me past my grammatical inaccuracies during my attempts at writing short stories. I’m not a native English speaker, so I found myself ...
0
votes
3answers
84 views

Why would a someone desecrate a pharaoh's tomb? [closed]

I'm trying to find a believable reason for someone to open a clearly cursed tomb for my short story. I'm finding myself between the silly-but-different and believable-but-boring spectrum. For example, ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

problematic writing [duplicate]

I'm currently attempting to write a story. And In the past I have tried but found myself unhappy with the result because I find that I use "I" in every sentence. For example: The wooden floor was ...
0
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5answers
280 views

Does Dean Wesley Smith's recommended method of writing into the dark, editing and sending actually produce quality writing that editors accept?

To elaborate, this is a quote from a question regarding this that I have found: "(Dean Wesley Smith) basically advises writers to just fly by the seat of their pants (without even having the ...
-2
votes
2answers
137 views

How can I shorten a piece of writing effectively? [closed]

I always face the problem of word limit. How can I shorten a piece of writing without causing its original essence to mar? How can I be effective in doing that? Are there any general rules? For ...
4
votes
2answers
165 views

Character and world building in less than 2000 words

Is it possible to build a new character and/or world in a science fiction under a tight word limit? What aspects should be covered and what avoided? Also are there some similar previous examples to ...
2
votes
4answers
207 views

Are competitions worth it in order to get published?

I have recently finished my 25,000 word novella and contacted some publishers and agents about a month ago. I have only heard back from a couple rejecting me but considering the format of my book as ...
18
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9answers
10k views

Is it possible to write a short story in 500 words?

There is a short story contest where the limit is five hundred (500) words and I want to know if that is a possible limit for a short story?
4
votes
1answer
271 views

What genre would a fictional eyewitness account of a real historical event fall under?

I've written a short story about a true historical incident which involves a very famous person in history. The incident is true as are the people involved in it. But the story is a fictional ...
1
vote
1answer
111 views

How to annotate short stories

Recently I’ve been getting assignments to annotate 1 or 2 short stories in English every day. Are there any good techniques to use when annotating short stories?
0
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2answers
191 views

What are the top most important key elements for a computer game story?

I am a programmer and in the middle of developing a TBS (turn based strategy) computer video game. Those kind of games have a flow of what is commonly known to gamer as 4X, that is, explore, expand, ...
24
votes
5answers
7k views

How can I hint that my character isn't real?

How can I make a side character's tangibility open to interpretations so the audience is unsure if she's even real? My short story is about identity. My main character is being pressured by a friend ...
1
vote
4answers
294 views

Introducing evil characters before the evil deeds take place

Is it possible to introduce evil characters (be identified as evil) before the action (the crimes committed by the characters) takes place?
2
votes
2answers
184 views

Is having elaborate metaphors ever a bad thing?

Is having elaborate metaphors a bad thing in a short story (for the purposes of the story being accepted by a magazine)? How can I know if my metaphors are too elaborate?
4
votes
4answers
231 views

How could the disregard for both plot and dialogue tell the story?

I want people to understand what I write, but I do not want to use conventions such as plot or dialogue to tell a story. Without a plot I have been criticized of not having written a story, but ...
25
votes
9answers
4k views

A torrent of foreign terms

I am writing a short story, about a particular field with multiple specific terms, none of which are in English. (Specifically, I'm writing about bullfighting, but the question could apply to other ...
15
votes
8answers
3k views

Sci-fi change: Too much or Not enough

I am in the process of editing a short story. It is science fiction of the "if this goes on" kind: I take a social trend I see, and paint its event horizon - a troubling future. 1984 and Fahrenheit ...
25
votes
11answers
8k views

How do I stop my characters falling in love?

So I'm writing a short story based in a WW2 American military base camp stationed in Germany. It's about A Jewish Soviet soldier that, with the help of an American soldier and a series of coincidences,...
8
votes
3answers
275 views

Can I modify and turn my published short stories into a novel?

I'm writing some short stories that are all connected and are set in the same universe, because I planned to put them together into a novel later. My question is: If I publish those short stories, can ...
10
votes
2answers
471 views

How do I make a very short story powerful?

I'm currently working on a project where I write events for a story driven video game. The limitation is that I have to get through a discovery, the consequence and the character's response to that in ...
11
votes
2answers
104 views

Should I write in a style that is more conducive to a situation I am describing or write it the way I normally write?

I am writing a short story that describes a dream that I had as a child. I wrote a first rough draft and had my girlfriend read it to give me some feedback. One thing she criticized is my writing ...
4
votes
2answers
412 views

How do I prevent my stories from feeling rushed?

Many of the short stories that I write feel too short. Now, I know that there's nothing wrong with a (very) short story, but often I feel like I'm rushing the story because I have an idea for the ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

What are the pros and cons of different media for short story publishing?

I recently wrote a short story (I'm still in the process of editing it, but it's all written), and have been looking at different publication options. The story is about 8,000 words, a mystery story. ...
3
votes
3answers
115 views

POV - 3rd Person Rules and Exceptions?

I'm stuck on a POV question in a short story I'm writing. The entire story is written in 3rd Person, but not omniscient - I guess it's either "distant limited" or "deep" (I'm not sure exactly the ...
5
votes
3answers
219 views

Should a short story be submitted to a publisher in order to know if they would be interested in a book based on it?

I wrote a very compelling science fiction short story. I am currently writing a book about an entirely different universe, not related to this short story. I made this story rest for a long time, had ...
1
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2answers
117 views

Have I got the plot? [closed]

I am looking for verification on what is a plot for a short story. For example: A man wants to develop a new rose variety for his girlfriend as a way to propose, but he becomes obsessed with getting ...
6
votes
3answers
248 views

Is this ununderstandable character part of the conflict?

By "ununderstandable" I mean that this character I'm thinking of isn't human. He's more of a devil sort of thing. Of course he still has his motivations, goals, etc, but he's more of a tool rather ...
16
votes
5answers
1k views

What should tie a collection of short-stories together?

Short-stories are a nice format to write. If you have been an aspiring writer for at least one year, it's quite probabile that you've got at least three short stories drafted out, sitting in some ...
-2
votes
3answers
177 views

Short story vs. Novella [duplicate]

I'm writing a short story in the same universe as my post-apocalyptic novel, about the novel's antagonist. I'm planning on turning in this piece to my teacher as a part of my AP Lang portfolio. I'm ...
6
votes
3answers
155 views

Approaches to criticizing short fiction

What is a reasonable scholarly approach to breaking down short pieces of prose? Is it word choice? Is it structure? Is it themes, and how well they are used? Use of symbolism and its efficacy? Meter, ...
2
votes
2answers
128 views

What are some ways to make absurdity of certain ideas in fiction more palatable?

I am writing a science-fiction short story where there are a lot of pseudoscientific ideas being dealt constantly. I was wondering how to reduce the absurdity of some of those ideas using literary ...
6
votes
1answer
93 views

Using a different POV just for the opening line

I'm currently working on a short story with a dramatic "twist" ending. I use the quotation marks because, unlike a conventional plot twist aimed at surprising the reader, the intended target of the ...
0
votes
1answer
104 views

Can you give me some advice on this story? [closed]

Some background... Based on the short story of "Good Advice is Rarer than Rubies" in Salman Rushdie's collection East, West. Basically, Miss Rehana purposefully ruins her chances of moving to England ...
0
votes
3answers
100 views

Writing a short story in the same universe as my novel

In my post-apocalyptic novel, the MC Eris navigates the world of survivors and grapples with her newly discovered abilities. The leader of the group of survivors, and the book's antagonist, Ezrith, ...
3
votes
2answers
76 views

How do you advertise your work if you cover multiple topics or niches? [duplicate]

Lets assume that you write articles which get published online (on your own website), but these cover a wide range of niches. Some very family friendly, some aimed at children, some horror based, and ...
5
votes
3answers
328 views

Integrating complex philosophical concepts into a story

I would like to integrate the concept of "Nietzschean affirmation" in my short story. What are the typical ways to go about it? I don't want to put it there in plain sight, but make it obvious enough ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

Writing short stories in an original world setting [closed]

I'm writing short stories in a Fantasy world setting I have created — medieval times, magic, dragons, etc. People who are familiar with such a world may not find a problem reading a short story set in ...
1
vote
2answers
158 views

Is this imagery?

Would this small paragraph in my short story be considered as imagery? (Rose is looking for a painting) Rose and Mr. Howard stepped inside. There were cobwebs everywhere. Lots and lots of old ...
-1
votes
1answer
977 views

Continuing a short story [closed]

I got an assignment from my teacher that tells me to continue a story that he started. The limit is 1 page. The scenario is that Rose (the main character) is looking for a missing painting, inside ...
4
votes
4answers
568 views

What are some good ways of switching from third-person limited point of view to third-person omniscient point of view?

I am thinking of writing a short story which starts with a character narrating then ends up being narrated by an omniscient character. What are the best ways of making this transition? I can't think ...
4
votes
2answers
294 views

What sort of details do potential short story beta readers need?

I am considering uploading a trio of related short stories to Dropbox as a quick way to share them with potential beta readers. Before I actually link them elsewhere, I feel I should have at least ...
65
votes
8answers
10k views

How to avoid turning dialogue into Q&A session?

I noticed a problem I have in my fictional writing. My dialogues quickly turn into interrogations. Here is an exaggerated example. "How did you do it?" he asked. "..." "Will ...
2
votes
2answers
218 views

Shortening an already short story [duplicate]

I am new to this group but not new to writing in many forms... I have a great story that flows from my fingers -- got it to about 1500 words - but it must be 1000 for a competition. This has taken ...
6
votes
3answers
144 views

How should I handle writing a story where different portions of the narrative are told from the point of view of several different narrators?

My story is told from the perspective of different satellites that are creating a narrative. There are over ten of these narrators. I'm wondering if this might appear confusing for readers if the ...

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