F is for Flash Fiction

I believe my first experience with flash fiction was a one page story I read in one of the Writers of the Future books. (I looked online for it, but couldn’t find it.) The plot was this guy is reading the paper when the doorbell rings. He answers it and finds an alien holding a clipboard. The alien says, “Come with me, you’re starting to remember.” “Remember what?” “Just come with me.” I don’t know if it’s just my nature or if high school English classes had wearied me on symbolic meaning hidden in stories, but the simplicity of the story appealed to me.

Years later I came across a site that had a contest for stories of 100 words or less. I took that as a challenge and wrote “Life” and “What is Fate?” Unfortunately, I think it was a couple weeks after I submitted the stories. But I had developed a taste for flash.

One of my favorite aspects of flash fiction is the time. Yes, there are some stories I struggle with, but there are also stories where I get the idea and hammer out a rough draft in a manner of hours. To compare, I have a novel I’ve been working on for years and I’m only half finished with it. The ability to get an idea, write the story, and not have to think about it anymore is very relaxing.


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