Welcome to Fiction Friday.
Some of you, dear readers, are here because you support me and you will read pretty much anything I write. I love and cherish you guys. But I also know that many of you are also here because you are comrades-in-
armspens. Many of you love to write as much as I do. This post is for you.
About two months ago, as part of Jeff Goins’ 15 Habits challenge, I took a risk and posted an excerpt of a short story idea I had been playing with off-and-on for a while. You guys have been incredibly supportive, and Zach and his zombie friends are coming to life.
Now, my dilemma. I’ll be really honest, guys…I have no freaking clue what I’m doing.
Fortunately, there are some really generous and kind people out in the Blogosphere who really like to help people (and zombies). One of them is Joe Bunting of The Write Practice.
For the past year or so (which is like 50 in Blog-years), Joe has been sharing wisdom about how to write intentionally. How to grow as a writer. How to craft stories and characters and plot and setting. And how to be grammatically correct (which clearly I read, then ignore.)
Well, folks, in perfect timing, Joe has compiled some of his best advice related to short story writing into a book. A really good book.
Joe sent me a review copy of Let’s Write A Short Story at just the right time.
I am struggling to figure out what to do with a growing zombie. Plots and subplots and character development and world building and writing tools and on and on. I am overwhelmed.
Joe gets it, and he cuts through it all to help me focus on the craft.
Let’s Write A Short Story is equal parts encouragement and reality (Joe points out that it’s like 10 times easier to get into Harvard than to get a short story published, but that it’s still absolutely worth submitting stories for publication). It’s equal parts strategic and practical tips (Joe shares secrets about how to improve your chances of making the first cut and how to pick the right publications for your story). And, of course, it clearly explains the key elements of a good story (and how to avoid writing a bad one).
Over the next few weeks, I am going to taking some risks, following Joe’s advice, and asking you guys to keep me accountable.
By this time next month, I will finish and submit one Zach story for publication.
Disclosure: I got a complimentary copy in return for my honest review. After reading it, I told Joe it’s worth whatever he charges for it and I bought a copy just to support him. Also, I don’t get anything if you buy it–no ulterior motive here. So if you have ever dreamed of writing the Great American Novel, buy it. It’s good.