1. Senko

    Senko Member

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    Have you written short stories before your first novel?

    Discussion in 'Short Stories' started by Senko, Aug 7, 2018.

    I wonder how many of you who have actually finished writing a novel, have written short stories before that.

    If so, do you think that has really been of help?
     
  2. BayView

    BayView Huh. Interesting. Contributor

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    I didn't, but my first writing was fanfiction and I posted it by the chapter so I got feedback right away, and I think that was valuable.

    Really, I think that's the advantage of writing short stories instead of novels to begin... nothing to do with learning technique or anything, but just having the opportunity to get people's eyes on your work as soon as possible. A whole novel is a hell of a long slog.
     
  3. BlitzGirl

    BlitzGirl Senior Member

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    My first writing experiences were also fan fiction. I attempted to write other original novels, but the only works I finished were fan fiction. Many short stories, and one Star Wars "novel". :bigoops: On one hand, I know that writing fan fiction helped me improve my skills, but on the other hand I keep thinking about how much a waste of time it was, when I could have been doing original stuff. Same with fan art... So torn...
     
  4. GlitterRain7

    GlitterRain7 Galaxy Girl Contributor

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    I was in a creative writing class in high school, which was just basically we had to write a short story every week about whatever the prompt was about. I guess I could count those, even though I was working on my book and in that class at the same time, but I kind of don't. I was just writing those short stories for the grade, as I usually didn't care about the prompt. There was no heart in those, and I didn't care about them.
    Occasionally we got a free choice, though. I put more effort into those, usually.
     
  5. izzybot

    izzybot Transhuman Autophage Contributor

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    When I was eleven or so I wrote a thirteen-page 'novel', so ... :D

    As far as proper novels go though, yeah, I finished tons of short stories before finishing a real novel. They're different beasts to be sure, but you get a lot of practice on basic writing skills and figuring out how to pace and end things that'll still be broadly applicable to novel-writing, I think.
     
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  6. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Benevolent Ochlocrat Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I'm still working on my novel, but yeah, I've written plenty of flash fiction. It was a useful tool to teach me to rein in my prose. Flash? Quite a few, even got a shiny for one of them. Short stories (1200-5000 word range): Two to date. Novels in progress: One.
     
  7. X Equestris

    X Equestris Contributor Contributor

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    Like Iain, I'm still working on the novel, but I did write a lot of short stories before getting my nerve up to take a shot at a novel. Some of them, and one novelette, have been published.

    It was definitely useful in terms of nailing down the basics of prose and getting acquainted with the submission process. There are notable differences, but most of the lessons learned with shorts are still applicable.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2018
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  8. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    It can't hurt.
     
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  9. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

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    I think it is faster and easier to get feedback on prose by writing short stories, because more people will be willing to read it, even if they don't like it, because it is short. Until you have prose someone is willing to read, you aren't going to get good feedback on any other element. It sucks to make your best effort on 100k words and have all the feedback comeback silent, or be line edits on five pages and nothing after, but that is the fate of most people's first attempts. You can get that kind of feedback on a short story, so you might as well start there.
     
  10. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Benevolent Ochlocrat Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Stephen King, Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, and Robert Heinlein all did pretty well after having short stories published :)
     
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  11. S-wo

    S-wo Active Member

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    No, I went straight to a novel.
     
  12. Senko

    Senko Member

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    S-wo: seems that you are one of the very few people that dare to go straight to a big piece of writing.
    Just out of curiosity, do you also use to read novels a lot more than short stories?

    I get the idea that writing a fiction novel is a monumental work especially if it´s your first writing work.

    Thank you very much to all of you for your interesting comments.
     
  13. Writersaurus

    Writersaurus Member

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    I write short stories accidentally - but I suppose quality is better than quantity anyway.
     
  14. Irina Samarskaya

    Irina Samarskaya Senior Member

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    Only if you count 200-page notebook fillers that I did as a hobby since I was 10-ish...

    Otherwise, no. I cannot write if I cannot stick around...
     

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