A Story About a Short Story

I wrote a story today that I'm very proud of, but time will prove if it's really any good. I never trust my reactions in the afterglow.

I do think I have a handle on short stories though. It's probably the gratification of writing something that can be resolved so quick. Who knows? But I do love it.

I've noticed the most important thing with short stories is the first paragraph. You know how with books you need your first chapter to be killer? Well the first paragraph in a short story has to have a really strong hook or no one's going to devote three minutes or whatever to reading the whole thing. So what I do is write the story and go back and meticulously edit the first paragraph so it shines like the top of the Chrysler building. You take out anything that is cluttery and make those few lines sing and swing. It's kind of fun—though I totally don't think so at the time. It's only later that I feel the joy.

How's everyone doing this fine day? Sick of the holidays yet?


  1. I'm not very good at short stories. I have a hard time keeping them short. I think you should post yours.

  2. Wish I could, but recently I found out posting anything on a blog is considered publishing. Almost all lit journals will refuse a piece that has been previously published.

    However, a piece can be submitted to the Share Your Work section at AW for critique and comments as that is password protected.

    Rules, rules : )~

  3. Ah yes. Share Your Work. I have been there. Many times.

  4. LOL. Yes. It can be a virtual boot camp sometimes.

  5. Amy, I'm sure there's a market out there for a collection of short stories; I'm reading one in French at the moment. A book that one can pick up, spend twenty minutes with, and pick up again later on to read a totally different story, is great to have in your pocket/handbag etc.

    Surely there must be a publisher out there who understands this!

  6. I'm sure hoping there is Cro! If not, I'll be publishing it myself sometimes in the next year, line drawings and all.


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