Sunday, November 01, 2020

The Case For Flash

Well, it's the start of another month, and what is Gail doing? Starting another set-aside time for another kind of writing project. Just last week I learned about Flash NaNo 2020; 30 Stories: 30 Days. I was interested because:

  • I took part in a fantastic flash workshop this summer, one that dealt with all kinds of flash.
  • I've had one piece of flash fiction published, as well as a piece of flash nonfiction.
  • "Work on short form writing, essays and short stories" is one of my goals for this year, and flash is certainly short form. 

So I decided all that made a great case for why I should jump on this, even though I had little time to organize and had originally planned to keep working on my October project during the month of November. I am chaos! Go for it! 

My Case For Flash As A Writer

My interest in writing short stories involves writing about slices of life. That's what I think is interesting and want to write about. However, traditional short stories are expected to include a change for the main character and perhaps an epiphany. My slices of life don't always go over that well with fans of traditional short stories. Flash may be a better format for what I want to do.

My Case For Flash As A Reader

Over the last few years, I've become very aware of when I'm reading something that's going long, whether a book or a short form. I think a lot of this has to do with the overwhelming amount of writing that's being produced and is out there to be read. I have a lot of interests. I want to read a lot of things. 

So I really don't appreciate it when I'm having to read a lot of repetitive material. Unnecessary characters. Scenes that are perhaps amusing or interesting but really don't support the story the writer is supposed to be telling. I'm not a fan of long descriptions. 

In nonfiction I sometimes see books begin with long, long sections in which the author tells me what is going to be covered in the book instead of just covering it. Pages and pages. The creative nonfiction beginning frame of a case study has become a cliche to me. I often skim those. Case studies popping up throughout a nonfiction book--to me that's just padding now that keeps me from the content I picked up the book for in the first place.

Because I've become interested in flash of all kinds as a reader, I want to see what I can do with it as a writer. Leading me to spending this month trying to do a draft of some kind of flash each day, and trying to read more flash and read more about flash. 


The above post, by the way, is 450 words. My flash for today, though I do have something else in mind I'll start if I can find time on this Sunday afternoon.


No comments: