Welcome back, HoneyScribblers! Today's post is all about what flash fiction is, tips for writing it, and WHY you should write it! Without further ado, read on and enjoy :)
First of all, what's Flash Fiction?
Flash Fiction is essentially a very, very short story. They can be as short as a few words or up to 1000 words (but usually not more than that, because then it's considered an actual short story). One characteristic of this type of writing is that it is still a story with a beginning, middle, and end. Another one is that flash fiction usually incorporates a twist ending or unexpected last line, to make the reader contemplate the true meaning of the story. Here are some tips for writing flash fiction:
Tips for writing Flash Fiction
Strong imagery matters a lot. It's super important to help your readers visualize as much as possible, considering the short amount of words making up the entire piece.
Stick to only 1-2 scenes in one piece of flash fiction, and put all your focus on them. Cramming in more than 2 scenes will make the story feel rushed or possibly confusing to the readers.
Stick to only 1-2 characters in the single piece. If you feel like your story may need more than 2 characters (or even scenes), your story could be better in a short story format, rather than a flash fiction one.
Surprise your reader. A good tip is to end your story on a different emotional note than the one you started on. After all, flash fiction is all about taking the reader on a journey, no matter how short it is.
Jump into the action. When writing flash fiction, lengthy explanations, character introductions, and setting descriptions are not the way to go. My tip: go straight to the point and write what is happening before all else. Then, you can go back and add details to parts that need a little more explanation or stronger imagery.
Try and figure out the ending before writing. The essence of flash fiction is a good ending. Plot twists are excellent ones, for instance. But, people also involve a detail mentioned earlier in the rising action to incite surprise from the reader (which readers genuinely love so much).
Don't stress about the word count. I know there's a limit to flash fiction, but never worry about that on your first draft. The editing process is supposed to put you in the right spot. Simply follow these steps: Write and finish the story, check the word count, then edit and check the word count again.
Editing flash fiction is different from editing novels. For this, you need to go back and think to yourself: Does the story make sense? Does the message I'm trying to get across make sense? As I said before, this is when you focus on the word count. An important thing to do is identify the parts that aren't significant to the main message of the story. Then, use that to cut your word count down (it'll make the process so much easier, trust me).
WHY you should write Flash Fiction
So, you may be wondering: Well, flash fiction doesn't sound all that fun. You have to write a story with a beginning, middle, and end, as well as make the title interesting and write a surprising ending. But can't that all be done in a short story?
To answer your question, it can. You can absolutely choose to do a short story over a flash fiction, but this type of writing does something a short story doesn't: it gives writers a creative challenge. Sticking to the word limit can be stressful and anxious, but it really helps with practice for not overwriting or underwriting, depending on whichever one you happen to do (I'm a crazy overwriter, so let me tell you, this technique really works wonders).
Plus, this writing format can be done more often because of how fast it is to finish. Some writers write daily flash fictions to build the habit of writing and enhance their skills, which I think is super cool! A lot of readers like reading flash fiction because they're easy to get into and never need to be put on a TBR list, like novels! They can immediately share feedback and think of new ideas in the process. It's a win-win situation :)
That's all for this week, HoneyScribblers! Let me know if you've ever dabbled in flash fiction and your thoughts on it! You can find me, as always, on Instagram @hxneyscribbles, where I post 5-6 times a week and daily on my story! I also just created a Youtube channel, where I post funny and relatable short tiktok compilations! Not only that, I have a Patreon which you should totally check out! I started a wip bts series for my patrons that you DON'T want to miss out on! I hope to see you there <3
Alright, I'll see you in next week's post! Until then xx