Look at me, using hashtags in my title. I’m so modern!
Yesterday, I decided to try my hand at writing some flash fiction. For the uninitiated (which included me up until the other day), flash fiction is a very short story that generally has no more than 1,000 words. Given that during the last 12 months, I’ve written and self-published two novels (and since then have started writing a third), I thought a nice little break into something short and punchy would be fun. And it was!
I’ve also learnt some useful things that I thought I’d share with you all.
- When should a Flash Fiction piece take place?
When I’m writing The Others series and the novel I’m working on at the moment, I have plenty of time and space to set the scene. I had the ability to tell each character’s story and describe the setting. However, when you have a 1,000 word limit, you have to be a bit more economical. As a result, you don’t want to start a flash fiction piece by describing and introducing your characters (unless it is absolutely crucial to the story). Instead, you need to drop straight in, when the action has already started and just run with it.
- Duotrope is a thing
Before yesterday, I had no idea that Duotrope existed, but now I’m already completely sold on it as an idea. Duotrope is a handy little site that helps you to find websites and publishers who may be interested in publishing your work. Hell, they may even pay you for it. It also shows you how long you can expect to wait before getting a response and it can give you a hint into how likely you are to get accepted. Which brings me to my next point…
Reading a piece of Flash Fiction is a fast and fun experience. However, waiting to find out if you’ve been accepted is not. Or, at least, I don’t believe it will be. After all, the people behind these publishers have lives of their own and a shitload of submissions to go through everyday. With that in mind, I’m unable to let you know if my submission was successful or not. We’ll just have to wait and see – watch this space!
So, my chosen piece is now sitting in someone’s inbox, waiting to be read and judged. It’s kind of weird not to be completely in control of my little word baby, like I have been with the others. I’m just going to have to learn to let go!
I’ll post an update on this as soon as I have an update to give you. If I’m not accepted this time, I plan to try two more publishers with this story and, if I’m not successful with them, the piece will be published on here.
Photo credit: Foter.com