Well, you’ve heard me talking about it for a few months, now the time is close for when a super awesome anthology I’ve been working on with Denise Wyant is almost here. These short eight stories are filled with back to school romances (only adults are allowed folks!) ranging from male/male romances to regular female/male (me, me, I did one of those!), and it’s brimming with hot steamy relationships that leave you panting for more. I know it’s not my normal science fiction or speculative fiction, but sometimes you just got to do something fun and writing Gatekeeper was a whole lot of fun.
But I didn’t just stop at contributing a story to this anthology. On no. I also did all the graphics as well, including a teaser, an advertisement, and this super awesome cover that’s coming up. Did I mention I do graphic designing on the side (the way side folks because writing is my true passion)? But what can I say, I like to mix things up, because just writing can get a little boring sometimes (come on you know it can!). lol…
Anyways, if you like a good juicy romance (or eight of them). Look for Apple Bites coming up on August 25th. And without any other annoying delays (or words in parenthesis), here is my super awesome cover (because let’s face it black and white is totally super cool and sexy half naked guys is always an awesome thing.. and ha ha I lied about the words in parenthesis part).
What a great question, and one may writers struggle to answer in their writing journey. The best part about this question is there is no wrong answer. And yet, a writer often feels like the whole world hinges on that one important question… Should I write a novel or a short story?
The simple answer is… it depends.
It depends on the subject matter, how long you really think it will tell the best story, and how much staying power you have. Let’s face it, writing a novel is not easy. Many people have tried and failed. And many people have succeeded and wished they’d just wrote a freaking short story.
Here is a flash story I wrote from a writing challenge my critique group took part in a while back. I decided to dust it off and post it. This story was written from the writing prompt…You hear a baby crying, but you know you are alone… I didn’t stick strictly with the prompt as you will see when reading the story, but it got the wheels in my head turning and this is what I ended up with. Enjoy!
By: Cynthia Dawn Griffin
The wail came from everywhere and nowhere at once. The sound jerked me awake from a dead sleep. My blood froze as I looked about my darkened bedroom. The chilling noise came again, and it propelled me into action despite the fear twisting in my gut. I fumbled for the light by the bed, but my trembling hands refused to cooperate with the switch. I stumbled from my bed.
Here’s a story I wrote last week to get me in the Christmas spirit. This is a little bit different from what I normally write style wise and topic wise, but I thought I’d venture out of my comfort zone and try something new. Enjoy! And Merry Christmas to you all!
The Fourth Wise Man
By: Cynthia D. Griffin
We came- the four of us- one bearing gold, one frankincense, one myrrh, and then there was me. They don’t talk about the fourth wise man or what I brought, but why would they? My gift wasn’t of earthly riches. It wasn’t even a promise of hope. It was a gift of humbleness, one not of much importance, only a rock and not even a memorable one at that.
Here is a short story I wrote two years ago based off of a writing exercise I did out of the back of John Gardner’s book the Art of Fiction (a great book by the way and highly recommended by yours truly). In a span of two hours, the exercise took on the form of a suddenly inspired flash fiction story. I submitted it to Pill Hill Press on a whim and they accepted it. This company recently went out of business and the book I submitted to is now out of print, so I decided to post it here for people to read who were interested. I hope you enjoy.
I don’t normally review short stories on my blog simply because I read so many of them that taking the time to do a review for each story would leave no time for writing my novel, but Captive Girl by Jennifer Pelland was such an amazing read, I couldn’t help taking the time to do this post. Yeah, the story is that good, and so felt the strong need to share.
Captive Girl is a science fiction short story, but not like most science fiction stories I’ve ever read. It has a fresh slant to the age old story of sacrifice, duty, and love. Alice makes great personal sacrifices in order to protect her world from an impending threat from the skies. Her life choice leaves her in physical pain and a mutilated distortion of what she once had been, but all for the greater good, or so she thinks. Even as Alice carries out her heavy burden of duty, she longs for the thing she can never have; Love, acceptance, and a physical connection with another human. Be prepared for an incredibly emotional journey of heart wrenching sacrifice that will leave you asking yourself… What would you do for love?
If you like well developed characters and emotionally charged stories, this is something to check out. You don’t even need to be a science fiction lover to enjoy it. The best part, Captive Girl is running a free promotion on Amazon, so now is the chance to get it. Check it out and see what you think. Based on this one story, I have personally fallen in love with Jennifer Pelland’s writing and look forward to reading more of her work.
Flash Fiction, in short, is a fiction of extreme brevity. It can range from a few words to a thousand (but usually doesn’t go over a thousand words). It has many terms: microfiction, sudden fiction, short fiction, postcard fiction, or short short story. It has a history that has goes back to Aesop’s Fables and has been used often by many authors like Ernest Hemmingway. There are also exact word count flash fictions such as: the Drabble or Nanofiction (about 100 words in length) 55 fiction and the 69er.*
The key to flash fiction is to create a complete story in as short as time as possible, so conciseness is king here, creating flash fiction is an excellent way to learn this delicate technique. Some people do this by choosing a topic that evokes strong emotion and use that to drive their point home, while others rely on universal knowledge (like ice is cold and loss is sad).
The best way to approach flash fiction is to imagine it as one scene or moment in time, which then you come in with your “camera” and take a snap shot. You then convert that picture into words that stand a testament to your picture for all eternity. So don’t over think or complicate it with too many details, just come up with an idea and write it.