Category Archives: Uncategorized

How Short Can a Story Be?

Flash fiction as a genre has risen in prominence and prestige since Norton published the first flash fiction anthology over a decade ago. Norton’s most recent anthology includes such notables Ron Carlson, Robert Coover, Amy Hempel, A. M. Homes, Grace Paley, and Paul Theroux. The genre has been variously classified as encompassing stories of fewer… Continue Reading

Approaches to Structuring a Novel

I’ve been having a devil of a time shaping my novel in progress (in slooow progress). In revisiting resources, I’ve come to realize that all roads lead to Athens, that is, to Aristotle. In his Poetics Aristotle tells us that story, by which he means narrative literature, must have a beginning, a middle, and an… Continue Reading

The Plot’s the Thing

Plot has always been a particular challenge for me, and I know I’m not struggling alone. For step-by-step guidance on the process of plotting, I turn this month to John Gardner’s classic, The Art of Fiction. For this post, I excerpted and paraphrased pertinent passages while taking some superficial liberties with Gardner’s text. For example,… Continue Reading