Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The End of the Flash Fiction Project

I've spent the last year publishing a flash fiction (almost) every week on Book View Cafe. On Thursday (Dec. 10) I reach Number 50. It seems like a good place to stop.

Making sure I had a story ready to go up every week was quite a challenge. I thought I'd written quite a few very short stories, but it didn't take me long to go through all the reprints and the little gems I'd written that never found a home, which left me confronting a weekly fiction deadline.

I cheated a little. After awhile, I decided the upper limit could be 2,000 words, which gave me a few more reprints. Then I raided the personal stories I developed for oral storytelling and came up with something I called "flash memoir." I even posted a poem.

But I also wrote a lot of stories. At least half the stories in the series were brand new the week they were published, and a lot of the others were old ideas significantly reworked.

On the whole, I'm really happy with what I produced. I don't think all the stories are great, but some of them are real gems that I'm extremely proud of writing.

I don't think I'm going to do this again, though. It took up a lot of time -- I've been reminded forcefully that the length of a story doesn't necessarily correlate with the amount of work involved. And I've got a pile of ideas that need more than 2000 words to develop.

The stories will remain up on Book View Cafe for the time being. You can find links to all 50 here. They're in reverse order, with the newest one -- "An Oral History of Ceres: Lyda Gambon" -- on top, and the first one -- "The English Major's Revenge" (a homage to The Day the Earth Stood Still) -- at the bottom.

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