NOT The Short End Of The Stick: How Crafting Short Stories Improves Your Writing

Did you know that an average-size novel is 50,000 words? 50,000 words! No wonder writing is so hard. You need to craft an intricate plot, build complex characters, and describe a setting by typing one letter at a time, one word at a time, until you get close to 50,000. Aspiring writers (and experienced ones) may sometimes find this task daunting, impossible even, so I suggest that you learn and practice the basics of making a book by writing short stories. In fact, I think that writing short stories can improve your writing in general.

short story

Music Runs And Short Stories

I used to play the clarinet, and my band teacher always told us to practice difficult runs slowly at first, and then do them a little faster , and then even faster until we could play them at full speed. The same goes for writing. Writing short stories is not as overwhelming as writing a full length novel because your average short story is usually less than 10,000 words. But writing short stories still gives you practice at creating plots and characters, just without the intimidating 50,000 word count.

Packing A Punch

Some people consider writing short stories harder to do than writing a novel because you don’t have as much time to describe location, build characters, etc. However, this difficulty is actually a beneficial exercise for writers. You learn how to make your descriptions more vibrant, your characters more real, and your plot better structured because each word you type needs to count. It needs to pack a punch.

Looking Ahead

Some of the best short stories utilize the principle of “less is more.” I believe that in the case of short stories, the “more” part is how they have the potential to become more. You can tell a short story is a good one if you feel that it could very easily become a full-length novel. In fact, you may do just that.

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