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)


  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? =(

  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...

  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!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

35 Great Things About Turning 35

The prime of life starts at 35! It's the best-kept secret from younger people, but your 35th birthday is a major cause for celebration. For mine, I have made my own listicle of 35 reasons why experts agree that 35 is the best age to be:
You get to say, "I'm 35." The number 35 carries so much more gravitas than 30, but you're only a few years older. At 34, I've started fudging my age--by adding a year. People automatically take me seriously, and if they don't, at least they tell me I look young for my age. (Eye roll, hair toss, "whatever.")  35-year-olds DGAF. Inner chill reaches new heights at 35. Despite its #2 status on this list, it's the #1 response I hear about what's best about hitting 35. My gorgeous friend Nerlie was beautiful and resilient and wise beyond her years in high school, but now, at age 35, she gets to fully enjoy being herself on her own terms. She writes,  "I've survived so much that I don't waste time o…

A Bad Romance Starring Till Lindemann, Sophia Thomalla, Gavin Rossdale, Simone Thomalla, Sven Martinek, Andy LaPlegua, and Leila Lowfire

November 2018 Update: Sophia is settled in with Gavin a young soccer player (like mother like daughter) now, I guess, and Till is spending time with 36-year-old (hell yeah, thank you, sir) Ukrainian singer Svetlana Loboda. He is either her latest babydaddy or doing her the favor of bearding as such (not that he's great with beards, but we don't mind--we know how much he loves pregnant and lactating ladies) to help her keep some distance from her crazy ex who cuts his wrists over her. The juice continues...

To misquote Gaga, "I don't speak German, but I can look at foreign tabloids and guess what's going on if you like."

I guess it would be more professional and ladylike for me to be above this sordid celebrity gossip, but I'm not. I'm so not.

So let's see if I've got this straight. From what I gather...

Metalgod Till Lindemann, 54, and model Sophia Thomalla, 27 (upper left) recently exited a five-year, on-off, opennish relationship, which bega…

Ich Liebe Rammstein: Richard

Richard Z. Kruspe
Richard Zven Kruspe is Rammstein's founding father, lead guitarist, and natural frontman.

***IMPORTANT UPDATE, 2018***: Richard has immortalized his lifelong bromance with Till in a tender duet about their friendship, "Let's Go" by Richard's side band Emigrate. Till sings words such as "Zwei Herzen in mir schlagen" with sincerity and I think I am now deceased.

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 …