Friday, February 20, 2015

For me, flash stories flow easier in first person. If I'm going to tell an event momentous enough to warrant a story, but compressed enough to tell in 1000 words or so, I feel like a first person retrospective saves a lot of time.

Though, the first and only flash I've sold professionally was told in 3rd person omniscient, so what do I really know?

The fun thing about flash, or any short fiction, really, is being able to play with voices that might not sustain a whole novel. The silent alien who signals with his tentacles; the rowdy cowpoke who speaks like a dime novel; the woman driven mad by unspeakable horrors.

"Tell you my story? You do not want to know. Don't want to see. I did. I was there. No more. Please don't make me. You say it will help, but nothing helps. Not sleep. Not drugs. Even death won't cure it."

That kind of thing is so much fun to write. To put yourself into a crazy person's head, (or a cat's, or an alien slave) for an hour, then return to reality. Flash gives you permission to play with a variety of voices and styles, with no pressure to sustain the intensity.

Try it with a character or situation you would never imagine writing. It's very liberating.

Back to writing!
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