Choosing To Write Short Stories

S. J. Pajonas April 16, 2015
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I am a creature who loves a long, twisting, dramatic story that takes place over many years, characters, and generations. Basically, I love a good saga, especially if done well. I also love a good mystery which seems to go hand-in-hand with sagas… Family secrets, wars, etc. There’s lots of good story fodder there.

So it’ll probably come as a great surprise to you that I’ve delved into short stories! I am a writer who has trouble keeping my thoughts to less than 100k words so why would I even try my hand at short stories? Well, there’s another thing you may not know about me: I like a good challenge. My stories are always challenging as a writer because I have to craft long story arcs over several books. And the fact that I also weave in tons of Japanese cultural references and history make them even more complex.

Writing short stories sounded like a good way to keep me trying new things in smaller chunks. I’d have to keep my stories rich and compelling, but in shorter bursts, basically 10% of what I usually write since they’re coming out around 10k long.

They’re also a good way for people to get a taste of my writing without a huge time or price commitment. Both of which are important to me.

To prepare for my short stories I usually do a few things.

1) I write a brief two sentence description of what I’d like to accomplish with the theme of the story.
2) I write another brief two sentence blurb.
3) I write a guided outline of what I want to happen.

I also write blog posts instead of actually writing the story! Lol. It’s true. This week I should be writing more short stories, and I will be! The next two short stories in the Kami No Sekai short story series are set and I can’t wait to get them on the page.

Do you write or read short stories? What do you like about them?

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  • A few years ago I disliked short stories and it felt like the only short stories I read back then were short stories that felt rushed and I hated that, but it feels like in the past few years there has been more short stories and of better quality.
    I love short stories as I can finish them in one evening and still feel like I read a finished story or part of it. I really like your Kami No Sekai short stories as they are fun and while they all have the same subject each short story still feels like a seperate story. I am looking forward to the next Kami No Sekai stories :).

    • The balance is difficult, I’ll admit! Making sure to tell a whole story, or enough of a story, in one short piece is a big task. Some people may think that short stories means they’re easier, but it’s just the opposite! It’s definitely harder, but a challenge I’m enjoying as I write these. I’m so glad you’re enjoying them!