I’m struggling with flash fiction.
Well, ok, it’s not a titanic struggle, but still it’s giving me problems.
Now, there is not a proper definition of flash-fiction in terms of word-count: you’ll find a wild range of figures, from below 300 to up to 1000, and beyond.
But let’s say, for the sake of discussion, that I’m working on a 1000 words story.
And what makes it hard is genre.
A genre story includes a word, a paradigm, a setting.
There’s background events, there’s a more or less deep history, there’s a distinctive look and feel to the story world.
That takes up space.
As do characters, conflicts, dialogue, etc.
So, a flash fiction should be built on suggestions and hints, and offered to the reader as a puzzle, as one of those 3D toys that change shape depending on the angle from which you are watching them.
It is not easy at all.
The best way – for me at least – is, once the story has been outlined exactly like any other story, to write in excess of the target word count, and then cut the superfluous during a second pass/edit.
And still it’s not easy at all.
Ah, back to the writing pad!