Scene, scene, scene… done!

Posted: January 2, 2011 in short stories
Tags: , , ,

The last few days have been productive with regard to my new short story for January. I’m pleased about that because when I write every day the rest of my work gets productive too. (Even the housework – it’s infectious!) And of course, a little voice says more written equals more sold. But that does ignore the question of standards! (I’d enter for Nanowrimo except that I know I’d write rubbish.)

So I decided to work in a way that would ensure some acceptable standards right from the start.

I outlined each scene as I visualised it – this habit ensures that I “show” (like in a movie) and don’t “tell”, especially not the transition bits. In a short story for a magazine, the reader can usually imagine the transitions if you put a section break. And I always remind myself that films don’t show transitions.

Anyway, now that I have been through each section and tidied the writing up – partly for length (target: 2,000 words) and partly because I hate to work on a messy piece – my next task is to go through each scene with a toothcomb following some advice I heard from Dennis Foley.

He says that good dramatised scenes should do as many of the following as possible:
1 Move the story forward
2 Create or increase conflict
3 Reveal something about the character(s)
4 Foreshadow something important.

I think I’ve covered 1, because writing in visual scenes like this almost has to move the story forward. I’m hopeful the others are at least incipiently present, but that’s what I will be refining, now that I know the story is written and has legs.

I have a market in mind for this January story and I’ll let you know how it goes.


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