Friday, September 19, 2008

Under 1,000 Words

Eek! I've been working on a short story to enter in a contest. One of the rules is that the story must be under 1,000 words—without pictures to help. In addition, the contest requires my entry to contain five specific words.

Which sort of leaves me with only 994 to call my own.

Have you ever tried to write a story . . . an interesting story . . . with 994 words? I have a basic one completed that I don't think is too bad, but one of my cps (critique partners) thinks I need to put my protag in greater imminent danger. Which means I need to punch it around a little more.

And the contest deadline is looming.

A couple of points I've discovered that are helpful in writing a short story:

• Write tight. Every word must be needed. Look for those strong verbs whenever possible.

• You still need a character arc. Between the first word and the last word, your character needs to have been changed.

• For suspense, that character needs to be in imminent danger, not just perceived or possible danger. Aargh.

Just finished reading Kill Me.

Yesterday worked on installing a badly needed new modem. Oy.

Currently working on trying to find a few moments between visiting with company to write . . . anything.

It's all better with friends.

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