Comments and questions from Workshop, Day One

Okay, first up…addressing any specific comments or questions from day one.

Do you typically spend less (or no) time on pre-writing (backstory, etc.) for the short stuff, or do you find it just as important as for longer works?

It’s going to depend on the story and the characters, how well I know the characters before I start the story. I’m just now getting into the habit of making myself explore my characters backstory as much before I start writing. On a story that’s more complicated, I’m going to spend a little more time understanding my character before I start the story but a longer story gives me time to ‘get to know’ my characters a little more as I go.

Shorter stories, you don’t have that luxury so you need to know the characters really well from the get-go. So if it’s going to be a more complex short story, or a short story with more complicated characters, I’m going to spend a little more time on backstory than I normally would.

Is the sequel going to be something like Chocolate Sauce and (insert choice here).

Heh….nope, the title to the sequeal was Silk Scarves and Seduction.

I have always wondered how to write a good short story or novella with great character and plot, but have shied away from it because my stories tend to become rather large in scope as I progress. After reading this, however, I am tempted to try it again.

Not all stories are meant to long ones, not all are meant to be short ones. Some stories, I know starting out they’ll be shorter. If you get the idea that story is going to get complex and layered, don’t try to make it a short story, but if you have an idea that seems like it will work as a short story…go for it. Just remember the shorter stories don’t have much wiggle room for complex plots.

Admittedly, I’m not exactly the most organized soul when it comes to plotting. I’ve only started making myself outline a book in the past year or two. Before that, I never even tried. Now that I’m trying, I have to make myself do it. But after a lot of wasted stops and starts when something shows up in the plot that I wasn’t expecting…well, the more complicated stories tend to work better for me if I give myself a roadmap first.

I’m no genius at plotting it out in advance. I still have to make myself focus and concentrate to get it done. But I’m learning. 😉

Will be posting the winner’s name shortly!