I have been working through Holly Lisle How to Write a Short Story course – I am on Lesson 4 now. The techniques she is demonstrating on how to generate ideas and then flesh them out is amazing. For anyone who has done this I was already kinda using a variation of the Muse in Circles approach. I have tried most of them now, and they all work well for me. Though I have not tried Holly’s version of Muse in circles approach yet, but I think that one will be fun. 6 Cookies and scene-based length approaches are the two I am leaning towards currently.
I really wish I’d had this course when I had been writing short stories the first-time round. Last week I was able to write 2 full 3k-4k short stories, and about 5 or 6 fully fleshed out ideas that I will be working on writing this week. It had taken me the better part of a month to do one story before, and all of those will still need be taken through a new revision using these techniques as I learn more about the process.
The other thing I am liking about these short stories is that it is a tiny glimpse into another world. Each story could be its own world or part of another world I am working on. Some of the stories I have been planning out are in the same world as Second Sight, and it’s been very fascinating to revisit this world. Each short story reveals a small part of the world itself.
There is a great feeling of satisfaction in the completion rate on the short stories is so much quicker than Novels, it’s an incredible feeling start and then be done with something so quickly. A smaller bite sized chunk that’s easier to write, revise, submit.
I have been playing around with writing styles on the two I have written already. Both are something new that I have never done before. Having them short makes it easy to play around with that type of writing, third, first, distant, flash backs. It gives you this smaller tighter space to experiment. It might not always work, but its going to be fun to try.
I am letting the stories cool until the weekend and then I will get into editing them, and lesson 5. These lessons will hopefully help me create an incredible selection of tasters to my worlds for people to read and see if they like them.
One of these should end up being a submission to an anthology, which is both terrifying and exciting.
If anyone wants to try Holly Lisle’s incredible Course on How to Write a Short Story this is the link. It’s an affiliate link but if you want to go direct just type Holly Lisle writing on google and it should take you there.