Friday, October 22, 2010

Short Stories

So when I was a kid I always always wanted to be a writer. I loved writing short stories and hated writing anything longer than that. From before I could even write, I would dictate stories to my mom (usually about a girl named Rose who incidentally had the exact same things happen to her as happened to me, only with way cooler outcomes. Like instead of simply stubbing her toe falling off the swing, she would break her arm. Etc.) Then when I was about nineteen I suddenly had an urge to write a real novel, "The Great American Novel" in fact, so I sat down with my laptop and no outline whatsoever and wrote the first few chapters of what would later become Runaway Train. (Sort of. My computer crashed and I lost those first few chapters and then later started over and rewrote them with a few details changed). Then I discovered NaNo and wrote my first NaNo novel in 2008 which was pretty much a load of crap with a horribly Mary Sue main character and no conflict whatsoever. Then I rewrote Runaway Train as I mentioned above in June of this year and now I'm going into NaNo prepared for a third novel.

So all in all, it's been several years since I've written anything other than journal and blog entries, novels, and an occasional poem. I used to really enjoy short stories because they can be so intense, so real. Also, one technique I used to use all the time when I was a kid, which I would still love to really pull off successfully, is to write a short story with no names. Only a couple of characters, maybe as few as two, and not name any of them. I did it a couple of times as a teenager with varying degrees of success.

So anyway, I've had a couple of novel ideas that would probably either need to be a short story, or would need some serious subplots to really pull off as a novel, so I was thinking about trying my hand at some short stories after NaNo. By that point, I'll have two hopefully halfway decent novels, which I will be revising, editing and hopefully querying some agents about, so getting some short stories under my belt might be good. Also, I've heard that having some published work is useful when querying agents which I hope to be doing by next summer or so, and I currently have none (well, except for a poem which I published in the Highlights for Children's reader section when I was 12).

So I found a few short story contests with no entry fees that have deadlines in the late winter, early spring, so I think I'm going to write a few short stories after NaNo. Wish me luck!

No comments:

Post a Comment