After an unending, cool, damp spring, I know summer is finally here because I have the concentration abilities of a startled rabbit. I’m can’t sit still. Everything distracts me. At the slightest hint of something fun, off I go mentally or physically into some new thing at least three times an hour.
Is all this activity good for the writing? Not really but I am collecting a lot of interesting ideas and enjoying myself and my family along the way, so I can’t say it’s all bad—it’s just not very productive. I haven’t even touched my older WIPs since mid-June.
In June, I did manage to complete and submit a 13k short story for possible inclusion in an anthology. No word yet on the status of that one. I also decided to break my own rule about entering my work in contests and started writing a 3k paranormal short story.
I have to admit I took on both “short” projects thinking they would be a refreshing walk in the park and path to instant gratification. Instead these shorties are kicking my ass! I had no idea writing “shorter” was so difficult. There’s no room to ramble or get off target. I discovered the painful way shorties are concise, hardboiled little bits of fiction that require a lot of skill and planning. I’m on version six of my tiny 3K and I’m still not finished…
I deeply admire any author who can write flash and short fiction well. I’ll compare writing a short piece of fiction to cutting a very small but valuable gemstone. One must be cautious, go slowly and plan the angle of attack carefully because there’s no room for mistakes.
I’m wondering, does a background in poetry make writing short fiction easier? I have no poetic talent but I know many of you do. What do think? Do poets and authors of short fiction work from the same tool kit?