December 31, 2017 at 11:41 pm #346679
I Want to write a short story. Can you give me any tips on structure and how best to start approaching it? Or do you have any links to short online courses?
January 1, 2018 at 2:23 pm #655198
How many short stories have you read (answer should be “TONS!”)? How were they told? What caught and kept your interest? What did you like about them? What didn’t you like about them?
Now sit butt in chair and tell a story. Start at the beginning and end at the ending. Then write another one, and another, and another. At some point, you’ll have a story that others will want to read.
January 1, 2018 at 10:40 pm #655199
Thanks. You didn’t really answer my question. I know that bit.
January 1, 2018 at 10:59 pm #655200
Sorry about that Ostarella. I do apologise. You were offering assistance and I was being touchy. Thank you for answering my question.
January 1, 2018 at 11:10 pm #655201
No harm, no foul. If you know about reading what you want to write, then other than SPaG, you know what you need to know. Don’t make it more complicated than it has to be – just tell a story. 😉
January 2, 2018 at 12:44 am #655202
> I Want to write a short story. Can you give me any tips on structure and
> how best to start approaching it? Or do you have any links to short online
There are whole books written on this. Look through Writer’s Digest and their “Writing Resources” above, or in their shop, since they have published quite a few books on writing both in general and for short stories.
If there were a formula to this, the “big” publishing houses would be pumping them out through a computerized assembly line.
April 19, 2018 at 4:19 pm #655203
A suggested method:
1. Get out your mental bee trap and capture that little black and yellow devil buzzing around inside your head.
2. Examine it and then describe it in your notebook.
3. Let is sting you. Not once or twice, but dozens of times, and then describe those feelings in your notebook.
4. Use all your senses to play with it, and then describe in your notebook what happened.
5. By now there should be some emotional attachment to it, enough so to give it a name: Idea
A. If no attachment is present, toss it out and go back to step 1.
7. Rewrite you notes in some sort of sensible order showing what Idea wants, the troubles it has trying to get it, and whether or not it succeeds.
If one follows those instructions without deviation a story will be born. Perhaps not a well-written one, but that can be fixed. Perhaps not a financially successful story, but that, too can be fixed.
April 20, 2018 at 6:33 pm #655204
I remember reading an article by Orson Scott Card about short story writing that I liked very much.
I’ve tried to find the article online, but I could not find it.
The article was in a Writer’s Digest anthology of writing advice.
April 20, 2018 at 8:03 pm #655205
> No harm, no foul. If you know about reading what you want to write, then
> other than SPaG, you know what you need to know. Don’t make it more
> complicated than it has to be – just tell a story. 😉
Hi ostarella. 🙂
What is “SPaG”?
April 21, 2018 at 3:44 am #655206
SPelling and Grammar 🙂
April 21, 2018 at 11:23 am #655207
> SPelling and Grammar 🙂
And here I thought it was Spelling, Punctuation, and Grammar. So much for thinking. 😆
April 21, 2018 at 5:58 pm #655208
You might check out “Creating Short Fiction” by Damon Knight. I found it very useful when I started writing short stories 20 years ago.
April 22, 2018 at 2:39 am #655209
> I Want to write a short story. Can you give me any tips on structure
There a lot of YouTube videos on short story structure. But if you ask me, short story structure is the same as novel structure. There are many different types of structure, pick your favorite and try it out. Searching YouTube for “short story structure” or “story structure” will yield many results.
Here is a nice one:
“How to Structure a Short Story”
by Hannah T
> and how best to start approaching it?
There are different ways to approach writing a short story.
I would start by brain storming a character and a setting or world.
For example, let’s say the character is an elf. The elf lives in a fantasy world filled with magic and strange creatures.
Then I would start forming the plot by figuring out the end of the story.
For example, let’s say the end of the story is the elf defeats a powerful dark magician.
Then I would figure out the beginning of the plot.
For example, let’s say the dark magician wants to take over and become the ruler of the elf’s city, so now the elf must stop the dark magician somehow.
Then I would use any of the various story structures to fill in the plot points in the middle.
Or I would just fill in the middle by “writing by the seat of my pants” (pantsing), meaning I just sit down and make up the middle of the story as I go along.
> Or do you have any links to short online
Yes I do have some links. 🙂
VIDEOS OF BEST SELLING AUTHOR BRANDON SANDERSON’S COLLEGE LECTURES ABOUT WRITING:
YouTube channel Camera Panda
YouTube channel Write About Dragons
YouTube channel zmunk
YouTube channel BYUEnglish
BYU Lecture – Brandon Sanderson’s ENGL 321 Class
Here is a link to a topic I started in the “Self-Publishing – Tips & Discussion”, “General Questions & Discussions” subforum.
The 1st post has links to a lot of YouTube videos.
The 2nd post has something I wrote about the differences between a short story and a novel. 🙂
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.