Novels are about creating a world and weaving a tale that takes readers on an adventure. They should come out of it feeling like they know the characters and have lived the experience.
Short stories are about hitting emotions. You don't have time to develop complex plots or deep characters. The limited space of a short story (or even flash fiction) requires that you hit the readers emotions hard and back off. Readers should come out of short stories relating to feelings or emotions.
I was missing this, until now. Lately, I've been trying to tweak my approach. It's a work in progress, but I recently had a bit of success. A flash fiction piece I wrote for Paragraph Planet will be posted there tomorrow. I hope this means I'm getting on the right track.
Don't get me wrong - novels are still my passion and my #1 form. But I enjoy short stories too. My inability to write ones that really "pop" (or get published) has been frustrating me for a few years. I hope I finally learned the secret to nailing this particular form and that I will continue to improve. I'd like to be able to write short stories well too. Nobody wants to be a one trick wonder.
I saw that my New Years Resolution to research ways to write better was paying off with the book contract, but maybe it's paying off in other ways too. I should have done this long ago but better late than never, right?
It's definitely a process, and I see that it needs to be a continual process. To become a better writer is not only about writing and reading - it's about studing the craft as well.
That's all today. Bye!