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The other must pack an emotional wallop and tell a compelling story with a beginning, a middle, and an end—with about 2% of the number of words.
Find out what you enjoy and learn what people are writing and publishing right now.
For a few quality online journals, check out: Don’t just read other stories or poems.
Remember, you won’t likely start with something sensational, but what you’ve learned through your reading—as well as what you’ll learn from your own writing—should give you confidence. The most effective short stories evoke deep emotions in the reader. The same things that probably move you: It should go without saying that there’s a drastic difference between a 450-page, 100,000-word novel and a 10-page, 2000-word short story.
One can accommodate an epic sweep of a story and cover decades with an .
You may even decide to take it to the next level, earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) or Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree in creative writing, and consequently pursuing online journal or book publication.
However you relate to it, creative writing can be an enjoyable, rewarding craft. Whether creative writing falls outside of your comfort zone, or you aren’t sure how to get started, or you’re just working through a nasty case of writer’s block, there are plenty of things you can do to improve your craft. Sure, at any time you could sit down and, having never read a poem, write a book of poems, or having never read a novel, write your own out of thin air, but here’s the thing: they would probably be awful.
If you find these things knotty in a short story, imagine how profound they would be in a book-length tale.
Because it reveals many of the obstacles, dilemmas, and questions you’ll face when creating fiction of any length.
If you want to be a great writer, or even just a marginally good writer, you have to read.
You have to know what has been done and what people are doing now to gain any sense of what you should be doing. Spend time with contemporary short stories and poetry; look into plot-driven horror, character-driven pieces, “the masters,” and rising contemporary authors; explore journals, magazines, and blogs.