I find that I’m constantly coming up with ideas–whether they’re detailed or just a little spark of inspiration–yet I never seem to explore them all like I should. And sometimes my “pen” stops, especially when I’m in one of those lazy “I-don’t-care-about-anything” phases.
Over the last few years, it seems all I’ve focused on were novel ideas. Howver, not so very long ago, I was an avid short story writer.
Ok, let me revise that–I was an avid flash fiction writer. What do I mean? Well, back a few years ago–sometime around December of 2005, I found a website called FaithWriters. They have a Weekly Writing Challenge; each week has a specific theme. The stories submitted can’t be longer than 750 words.
The first time I entered, my story actually placed in the Editor’s Choice–the top eight entries of the week–which meant it was published in their quarterly anthology. It was the only one that actually placed that high; however I nearly always placed in the top 50 (and they cap it at 200 entries per week).
I used to write almost faithfully for the challenge. Most of the stories came to me while sitting in class in college and I’d write part of it in my notebooks. (If you’re curious, you can see some of what I’ve written here. ).It’s since waned significantly–I think I’ve written one story in the past year, and it wasn’t all that good. 😛
I wonder sometimes how I lost that spark for me to be able to write flash fiction.
But all is not lost. I’ve been focusing on trying to come up with short story ideas (in the middle of trying to figure out my novel…). I think writing those flash fiction pieces really helped me practice my ability to write–even if they weren’t all that great–and I think I’ve regressed a little.
I already have one idea–sort of–for a little “series” of short stories. It’s still going to have a Japan setting however–brace yourselves for this–it’s going to actually be a contemporary setting 😛 Me, write contemporary? Yeah…it’ll be a challenge. It’s the first contemporary piece I’ve tried to write in like, forever.
Anyway, I’d like for the stories to revolve around the stranger aspects of Japanese mythology (of which there are MANY) although I’m unsure as to how to tie that in to an actual story with a solid beginning, middle and end 🙂
I’ve also come up with the idea to write a brief story about the background of my Yuki-onna and how she developed into it. If anything, that will help me identify with her character and story more and perhaps I can make it decent enough to submit to short story contests. We’ll see. I still have to write the thing–it may not come out like I think.
If you’re a writer, have you ever tried your hand and writing short stories? What do you find difficult about it? What do you like about it as compared to writing a novel?
Also, this Monday (the 7th), will be my 200th blog post. In celebration, I’ll have a little giveaway, so come back and see how you can win 🙂