Skip to main content

It's Shorts Season!


The hot pants kind AND the literary kind!


I just watched The Dukes of Hazzard with special features.* Yeah, stick with me here. This is highly intellectual stuff. One of the special features explained the fashion engineering behind Daisy's shorts. Though they look like simple cutoffs that any yokel with a pair of scissors could create, apparently there was some intense design work required to get them as sleek, sexy, and daring as possible... while still having enough substance in strategic spots to cover her ass.

What's the point? Short STORIES, I am beginning to understand, are just as deceptively simple. I used to think I just didn't "get" short stories. I'm a novel kind of girl. At the library, I'm drawn to big, thick books with plots that flow like coursing rivers and large casts of slowly-developed characters. I've never liked reading short stories much, and I've always wanted to write novels.

But lately some writers I admire, including the folks at my favorite writing blog The Literary Lab, have convinced me that delving into short stories is a good idea for two main reasons:

1. It's a good exercise in learning to focus scene writing and characterization.

2. Getting short stories published is faster and sometimes easier than getting a novel published. Some writers suspect that they have an easier time publishing a novel after they have a few short story publications to their names.

So I've decided to give short story writing a try and enter Miss Glam's Short Story Contest that starts today. (No fooling!)

Anybody with me? Have any of you found short story writing to be helpful, either on the craft end or on the publication end of the business?

Now, to come up with some short story material! I'm pretty sure I have some old, shabby novel manuscripts in my files that could use a trimming...

*The Dukes of Hazzard (Unrated Widescreen Edition)

Comments

  1. Ahh, I used to love writing short stories. Maybe it's time I get back to it! Great entry!

    PS: Any reason you're not following me anymore? =(

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sometimes I start following a blog, and then one day my profile under "followers" switches to one with a blank photo and just the name "Jeannie." It's some kind of glitch and doesn't mean I don't subscribe anymore. Just one of those annoying things I don't understand about Blogger...

    ReplyDelete
  3. Like you, I am primarily a novelist. I've found short stories really useful, however, for the reasons you describe - it's easier to practise on 1,000 words than 100,000, and it helps to build up writing credentials.

    Also I find it helps sometimes to have a break and write something different. It's easy to get bogged down with a novel, and doing something else can be the answer. And it's more productive when that "something else" is writing a short story, not watching goofy Youtube videos :-)

    Good luck in the contest!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Ich Liebe Rammstein: Till

UPDATE: After purging his sillies on the side project LINDEMANN and participating in another Rammstein documentary video, Till has begun work on a seventh Rammstein album, estimated to be released in 2017. Till Lindemann
Till Lindemann is the only living human who could kick Chuck Norris's ass, but he doesn't, because they go on emo hunting trips together. The source of this fact, Urban Dictionary, also provides the following essential details: "Till Lindemann is the anthropomorphic personification of pure masculinity who invented the often-lethal dance move: The Till Hammer..." "He challenges the definition of masculine..." "Every German fertility clinic features a cardboard cutout of Till Lindemann choking a shark with one hand, whilst cradling a kitten in his other, looking directly at the stirrups in the insemination room. To this day they have a 100% success rate."

To the chagrin of most of the band, including Till himself, Rammstein is, …

Ich Liebe Rammstein: Richard

Richard Z. Kruspe
Richard Zven Kruspe is Rammstein's founding father, lead guitarist, and natural frontman. He's gregarious, well-spoken in both German and English, a professional showman, and an enthusiastic promoter for the band. In German, his name is pronounced "REE-kard," and in Germanglish, "Reeshard," or "Reesh" for short. Richard is sexy, and he knows it. To many Rammstein fans, he is the cuuuuuuute one. His Facebook page would have you believe it.

Legend has it that Richard has a lovechild with lead singer Till Lindeman. The myth is based in complicated facts and figures, including one unconventional love triangle. Circa 1990, Richard and Till were in a band together (along with future Rammstein rhythm guitarist Paul Landers) with the cheeky name First Arsch. Till, the drummer, was a single father of a little girl at the time, the issue of a short-lived, youthful shotgun wedding--to Richard's current girlfriend. When "Mrs. Lindem…

Safe Products for the Uncrunchy Mama

When I got pregnant, I became ultra-paranoid about toxins. (Haven't you heard? Pregnancy is the best time ever to become a paranoid schizophrenic!) At first I was drawn to everything "crunchy," from home organic gardening to no-poo hair care. I actually loved gardening and no-'poo, but they are not as simple or easy as you might be led to believe. Then I realized that all that crunches is not wholesome (there is just as much consumer-swindling, hazardous and unscientific BS in the "crunchy" sphere as in mainstream marketing toward women) and besides, I was too tired to make all my own soaps and cosmetics. And I didn't want to smell like patchouli and vinegar every day, much as I do love those two things. And I like my hair and skin and nails smooth, totally unlike my nut butter.

Fortunately, I found three great brands that offered everything I wanted: convenience, quality, reasonable price, and safety for me and my unborn child. Their products are luxu…