A “mainstream” short story can be about anything: a mood, a character, a setting, even a flashy writing style. A genre (SF or fantasy) short story is about an idea. The fictional elements (character, plot, setting, etc) are only there to dramatize the idea. Here are the rules for the SF (or Fantasy) short story.
Archive for the ‘Information Center’ Category
Today the board of directors of SFWA voted to add Redstone Science Fiction to the list of SFWA qualifying markets. Just celebrating its first year online, this market features science-fiction short stories and essays. They have published SFWA authors such as Cory Doctorow, Vylar Kaftan, and Cat Rambo. Because they have met the SFWA minimum requirements since […]
Today, I’ll focus on kindle publishing, but the principles apply equally well to Nook, Smashwords, PubIt, and other distribution systems.
Well, folks. This is it. The final post in the series. I’m going to finish identifying basic patterns for the resolution phase, summarize what I’ve presented on structure, and wrap the whole series up.
Readers want their tension to build to a pitch. Then they want to feel a release. The resolution phase is where you deliver that delicious release.
Creativity is a nebulous, murky topic that fascinates me endlessly — how does it work? What habits to creative people do that makes them so successful at creativity?
The stories that use insight and decision are usually those where the main obstacle is the character’s internal problem. For example, in stories where love and friendship is on the line and the obstacle is the main character’s values, it may be that the hero has to make a decision to place love above something else.
Just as I need to know my hero’s goal, motives, and plan, I also need to know the same things about my antagonist. In fact, in some stories the antagonist’s plans are what drive the story.
Taking the readers to the point where it seems their worst fears will be realized and then turning it around only makes the victory sweeter. Giving the reader great hope, just before everything falls apart, makes the loss feel so much more terrible.
Are Facebook, Twitter and IM having any effect on the quality or volume of my work? These questions, coupled with a very long list of goals I wanted to accomplish, plagued me like a broken plot.