Uncollected Short Fictionis no exception. In it, he lists eight rules for writing a short story: Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.
Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water. Every sentence must do one of two things—reveal character or advance the action.
Start as close to the end as possible.
No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.
Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.
What are your rules for writing short fiction? Let me know in the comments section below. About Chris Robley Chris Robley has written posts in this blog. Chris Robley is an award-winning poet, songwriter, performer, and music producer who now lives in Portland, Maine after more than a decade in Portland, Oregon.Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
(/ ˈ v ɒ n ə ɡ ə t /; November 11, – April 11, ) was an American writer. In a career spanning over 50 years, Vonnegut published 14 novels, three short story collections, five plays, and five works of non-fiction. Kurt Vonnegut’s Eight Rules for Writing a Short Story Posted on September 22, September 22, by Cristian Mihai Kurt Vonnegut, one of the most influential writers of this century, passed down a simple list of rules for writing a short story, though I think they can be applied to longer narratives as well.
— Kurt Vonnegut: Bagombo Snuff Box: Uncollected Short Fiction (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons ), Keep It Simple. Write what you’re writing as simply as possible. Don’t write fancy sentences using SAT vocal words.
Kurt Vonnegut called this “making necklaces for . How Useful Are Kurt Vonnegut’s Eight Rules of Writing?
February 9th, da morto by Daniele Prati used under CC BY Despite passing away in , Kurt Vonnegut remains a giant in the American speculative fiction tradition. Vonnegut was fond of the short story.
Kurt Vonnegut’s Eight Rules for Writing a Short Story November 6, 0 Rules for Writing Flannery O'Connor, Kurt Vonnegut, rules Permalink 0 In a earlier post, I praised Kurt Vonnegut for his skill with creating intriguing titles. In this brief video, Vonnegut offers eight essential tips on how to write a short story: Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.
Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.