Saturday, March 01, 2008

Tips for Writing Short, Short Romance Stories...

I confess. (No, it's nothing like my 1980's post confession. ;) )

I confess that I really like writing short stories.

I know several writers who find shorties to be difficult to write. They are if you approach them from the wrong perspective. From the short shorts to novella length (for my publisher, By Grace and Moonlit Romance, a novella is 10K - 20K words in length), it's simply a matter of how you approach the story.

These are how I go about writing super shorts---1K shorties.

Tips for Shortie Writing

1. Keep it very simple.Pick a theme to help define your setting---for example, Valentine's Day, a blind date, a chance meeting, summer soltice. Practically anything can provide a theme---a starting point.

2. Don't bog up the story with a full-sized cast of extras. Keep the
story focused on the H/h. Pick ONE point of view and stay in it
throughout the story.

3. Word choice. Pick strong, vivid verbs; nouns with punch and
clarity. You don't have the space to meander down the country lane.
Make every word count.

4. Rather than looking at this as an impossible task (which it
isn't), consider writing a shorty from the perspective that it's a
pivotal chapter or scene: showing when the characters notice they
are falling in love, for example. The HEA can be implied.

5. I find that editing/revising is FANTASTIC practice for honing my writing skills. Since you must count every word and make every word
count, consider the following: Avoid adverbs---go for Verbs with
Verve instead; Use Solid Nouns---be specific, rather than general;
Use Active Voice---the verb "to be" in all it's conjugations is not
your friend because it's passive and requires a supportive cast of
words around it---furthermore backflashes take up space, so watch
those "hads", too; Watch those prepositional phrases---some are
necessary, true, but if the words add nothing to the story, then

6. Did I mention "Keep it Simple"?

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