A few weeks ago we discussed what makes a good plot and how do you “squish” it into a few pages? We both agreed on the answer. Keep it tight and give ’em hell!
What exactly does that mean? With a short story, you need to choose your words carefully. There’s no room for wordiness, especially if you have a word count. Keep it tight and use action verbs.
The second part is imperative to any story no matter how long or short. Do not give your main character what they want. Dangle the carrot in front of their nose, then give ’em hell and take it away. This concept helps develop tension, conflict and moves the plot forward. If the protagonist has a problem, then they need to find a temporary solution. Allow the solution to work for a second then give ’em hell again with another problem. That process needs to happen several times in the story.
I believe in keeping things simple so when I consider the plot of a story, I work through it with the above outline. That thought process helps me form a fully developed plot without worrying about huge holes.
What helps you write a cleaner short story?
Until Next Time…