Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


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Writing from experience

Reader, I did it! About two hours ago – at the time of publishing this – I sent a short story of mine to a literary magazine, my first literary fiction submission ever. Mainstream as hell, no flashing swords, no roaring rockets, no snarky adventurers in this one. Serious fiction, yessir.
There goes my pulp street cred.

The venue to which I have submitted my piece is so classy and literary and posh that they don’t pay the stories they publish, but in exposure – but I was happy to break my rule, never to give away my work for free, because, first, it was a 330-words piece that I wrote in thirty minutes (and edited in two hours, more about that later), second, I considered more a writing exercise than work, and third, because it is a story I want somebody to publish.

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The Last Ride

I have been experimenting with flash fiction, recently – that is, short-short stories, under 1000 words. They are reasonably fast to write, and there seems to be quite a market for the format out there, so, why not?

And as the man said, I’ve suffered for my art, now it’s your turn – and therefore I’ve just posted a 1000-words story called The Last Ride to my supporters, as a Patreon exclusive.

It’s a very small thriller set inside an elevator.

It’s good to be my patrons.


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Second submission: flash fiction

I’m well pleased with myself – not only I sent off the second submission of the year (I’ll have to put a counter here somewhere), but it’s a 1000-words flash fiction, a format I am always very uneasy with. I tend to be a long-winded sort of guy. I like long dialogues, and that’s not necessarily the best thing to do in a flash.

One thing I found works just fine is to have a strong idea of the conclusion. I’d go as far as to say that the last line should be the first thing to write, in a flash fiction.

Anyway, the story is now in the hands of the editors – and their judgment will be final. In the meantime, I’ll start working on the next short-short story. It would be nice to have it finished by tonight – 1500 words, no more.


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597 words

flash_fictionAnd what the heck, I did it.
597 words of science fiction story, and quite good it is – if I do say so myself – and with almost one hour before the deadline I set myself.
Now all I have to wait is for the publisher’s approval.
But it was a fun experience – all it took was a long walk in the cold of the night, to get my ideas finally come together.
So much I liked the experience, that I am really looking forward at writing more of this short-short fiction.
And if in the end I’ll publish it, even better.


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Flash fiction

FlashFictionThere’s something I really find hard to write, and that’s flash fiction.
Flash Fiction is usually described as fiction within the 1000-words length.
A “proper” flash fictionshould have a beginning, a middle and an end, just like a short story or a novel. Only, everything should be fitted in less than 1000 words.

Right now I’m trying to do a 600-words piece that will go into a game book.
I have the characters, the story, the dialogue. The plot works. The hooks are all in the right places. Only, I am helplessly long-winded.
But I’ll do it – because I have set tonight’s at 10 PM as my deadline.
And yet, the problem remains. Continue reading


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Flash!(-fiction)

photodune-8326461-lightning-xsI never was very hot about flash fiction – while I still like short stories best, I don’t like too short stories. Six thousand words is my ideal length, followed by ten thousand.

According to Wikipedia

Flash fiction is an umbrella term used to describe any fictional work of extreme brevity, including the Six-Word Story, 140-character stories, also known as twitterature, the dribble (50 words), the drabble (100 words), and sudden fiction (750 words). Some commentators have also suggested that some flash fiction possesses a unique literary quality, e.g. the ability to hint at or imply a larger story.

As I said, not my thing.
But it is important to try new things. Continue reading


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Flash! (fiction)

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.

On-Magazine-Flash-Fiction-1024x496

But let’s say, for the sake of discussion, that I’m working on a 1000 words story.
It’s hard.
And what makes it hard is genre. Continue reading