Thursday, March 13, 2008

Age Old Question

Well, okay, maybe it isn't an AGE old question but it is a very oft asked one.
"Does writing short stories increase my chances to have my book published?"

I can only say, it doesn't hurt.

I have found that writing short stories keeps me in the writing chair, and that is always a good thing. Some people say that you must just sit down and let the words come (free-thought writing) to get into a writing mind-set. Writing short stories will enable that. Once you are working on what you think is going to be a short story, sometimes it turns into a longer work.

You never know when your characters from a book will decide they have a neat little story that needs telling, but you have no place to put it in your current WIP.

I will give them the stage and POOF! A new short story is born.

Short stories are not always meant to be sold to a short story market either. Sometimes they are just character sketches that you need to know about. Sometimes they are scenes from books you will write later. My suggestion is to keep a folder on your PC/Mac that will be labeled "short stories" and dump everything that isn't a book in the making into it.

If you like short mystery fiction, don't forget to check out the linkies on our page. There are a few good markets out there, and if you want to know how short stories are written, you can find a ton of good ones to read to help you in your journey.

I will have a new one out this month at Mouthfull of Bullets. GO -- READ-- and let me know what you think.


Marta Stephens said...

Hey Kim, congratulations on your next published short story!!

You're right, working on short stories does keep the mind and the fingers working. I find that shorts help me to concentrate on the plot and economize on words. Not the easiest thing to do. You're a natural at it with several to your credit. :)

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Kim, I admire your ability to write short stories - something that's not natural to me. I'm not sure why - but whatever I write almost always ends up in a novel! LOL. Anyway, congrats on the news I heard about your (three?) stories coming out this year! Way to go!

s.w. vaughn said...

Congrats on your latest release. :-)

That's a great piece of advice about not all short stories being meant for a published market.

pat said...

I often wonder if this is where I should try to go first....the short story...will have to see about that. Hmmmm....

And may I say, I LOVE this Murder By 4 site! Such a generous and insightful group!

You are all so giving and for people out here like me...a person who has stumbled in from the cold, I feel like I have stumbled into this warm...well,tavern. Of sorts!

There's a fire blazing, old tables and chairs, good food served up by a fat German lady (don't know where THAT came from!), some good beer, fine wine, and ...all of you! Marta, Aaron, Kim, SW...

As I stumble in, you all look up at me, smile, and pull me up a chair.

Yeah...just like that....

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Dear Pat,

We welcome you to the MB4 Tavern with open arms, cold Riesling, and a nice big plate of cheese and grapes. ;o) Mmmm. Now I'm hungry. LOL! Thanks for your support and kind words!