But this format is non-fiction, even though the practice of continuous writing helps any genre. My heart, though, is in fiction. Novels are my dream, and the path to a book winds through the short-story. A form I am not good at, and frankly haven’t practiced in years.
I wasn’t disappointed. If you are interested in writing fiction, this book is for you. It’s filled with inspiration – it makes you want to sit down and write a story right away – and it’s also filled with practical help, and prompts to help you put his advice into practice.
He starts out with 8 reasons for writing short stories, and by point 8, I was hooked. I was ready to just sit and write.
I love that he is launching a whole community devoted to short story writing. What better way to be encouraged to keep writing!
Mysteries have always belonged to the storytellers.
One of the structures a short story needs is to be a story with a hole in it. I really liked this point and how he described it. The character in the story changes. But then, and this is where most writers stop, you have to show how the character has been changed by his change. If you stop at the transformation, you leave out the resolution. I thought that was incredibly helpful.
The section on literary techniques was my favorite part. He pulls out examples from well-known books, showing you how to imitate the greats. Write long sentences, with a short one at the end. Be lyrical and have allusions to great literature and the Bible. Have a wide scope. Set your small story within a larger, global story.
He goes into a lot of detail to specifically show you how to show, and not tell. By giving examples and fleshing them out, this is a great section, and one that is easy for a writer to get caught up in.
Chapter 4 is on Writer’s Block. This is a great section.
“When I get blocked, it’s because I’m trying to write the perfect blog post or the perfect short story or the perfect book. This is impossible and not worth the effort. Writing something open and vulnerable, on the other hand, is worth the effort.”
When you can’t create you can work.
Once he gets to the parts that I have even less experience with, such as editing and submitting, then I really learned a lot. Search to edit? I had no idea! How handy is that?
I love the kick in the pants to submit. If writing is what I want to do with my life, then I can’t be a mere journaler. My job as a writer is to write things for others.
Page 112 gave me a big moment. I submitted one story to a couple of publications a couple of years ago, and holy cow. I did not follow the layout he says to use. So, obviously, that is very helpful.
We write to be fully alive. Writing draws us into the moment….Writing helps us make art out of everyday, ordinary moments.
I loved this book. It’s practical, inspirational, and educational. When I finished, I was inspired to join the Write Stuff community, and to actually practice short stories.
Inspiration to incarnation. Isn’t that what we all want from a book like this?
So click on over to Let’s Write A Short Story and get involved!
I received this book from Joe Bunting for review purposes. I was not paid for my opinion.