Constructing a short story is a delicate art. As a short fiction writer and regular judge of Reedsy’s short story contest, I’m especially well-acquainted with this fact — and over the years, I’ve learned that there are certain crucial elements that go into every great piece of short fiction.
Today, I want to translate these elements into clear, actionable tips for short story writers who hope to get a better handle on the form — and who may even want to enter a contest or publish their short stories for a wider audience! Without further ado, here’s my best advice on how to build a short story from the ground up.
1. Find the key emotion
While emotional resonance is ideal in every kind of narrative, it’s imperative in short stories. You have so little space to make an…
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