Unlike novels, short stories begin close to the climax. Therefore, a short story should have a limited number of characters and scenes. It should focus on one conflict and lead the reader towards an abrupt and unexpected revelation.
Read on for tips on how to write creative short stories. By all means, I’ve used these ways for improving writing when I needed to do my college essay for me.
Do you have a short story due tomorrow? The following emergency tips should help you get started.
- What does the protagonist want?
- What morally significant choice has your protagonist taken to achieve their goal?
- What obstacles must the protagonist face to achieve their goal?
- What unexpected consequences will result from their choices?
- What setting, supporting characters, and dialogue will help tell your story?
Most importantly, remember, a short story focuses on generating feelings from your reader as opposed to communicating your feelings.
Begin with a catchy paragraph
Capture your readers’ attention in the first paragraph – otherwise, they might not read your story. Begin your story with an unexpected or unusual conflict or action. Remember, a short story should begin close to the climax. So, start with a sense of urgency or tension.
Develop the characters
Develop good characters for your story by understanding more about them than you will reveal. Figure out your characters’ name, age, gender, race, appearance, temperament, hobbies, marital status, phobias, favorite food, secrets, nervous gestures, etc.
With a clear idea of all these things, you are in a better position to write an exciting story.
Pick a point of view
Who is going to narrate your story? Is it going to be from the perspective of the first-person narration, second or third?
The third-person perspective allows you to explore each characters’ thoughts and motivations.
The second-person perspective allows the reader to see the scenes and directly identify the possibilities.
The first-person narrative connects readers to one character, often the main character. Its main drawback is that it results in telling the story instead of showing.
What do the characters say to each other or themselves? Dialogue gives characters a voice, allowing the reader to understand them better. It also provides a break from the monotony of narration.
Create a setting and context
Where and when do the events take place? What is the context and atmosphere of whatever is happening in your story?
Creating a setting and context helps the reader visualize a scene. Use descriptive language to help your reader experience the scene.
Develop a plot
To develop a good plot, you have to include the following elements:
- The hook
- Exposition – some background info to help understand the motivations of your protagonist
Conflict creates tension and is one of the best ways to begin a short story. Conflict is the clash between opposing characters or conditions. Create anticipation by balancing the opposing forces of the conflict so that you keep the reader wondering how your story will culminate.
Create the climax
The climax is the ultimate turning point of your story. It is what the reader has been looking forward to as they read.
Always present the climax in a scene. In other words, do not describe the climax, show it.
Write a resolution to the conflict
A resolution is the writer’s interpretation of the story. How did the events of the story change the characters, and what can the reader learn from the story?
In a short story, it can be impractical to give a complete resolution. That’s why some writers leave it open so that the reader can draw their own meaning.
However, should you choose to include a resolution, you can creatively do so using:
- Dialogue or monologue
- Literal or symbolic imagery
Author Bio: Written by Meghan Hale, a content writer at Pearl Lemon Leads and editing machine. You’ll find me yelling at my dog to stop barking, whether it be at the neighbours or on a long afternoon walk