Friday, November 30, 2012

Short Stuff

A few months back a literary journal published a 750 word story that I wrote about a mid-life couple's climb to the top of Mauna Kea in Hawaii.  It was, as they call it in the literary world, a short-short. But I have a lot of these things.  What with the American attention span being the length of a gnat, it's no wonder that many people are eager to read something that is, essentially, little more than a Twitter.  Fewer people seem to have the focus necessary to complete a novel, or even read the front section of a newspaper.  If you can't write it in 128 characters or less, most people won't read it.

I'm okay with writing brevity.

However, as it has often been noted, shorter doesn't mean easier.  In fact, as a general rule, the fewer words one has to work with, the more difficult the writing becomes.  Every word means something in the brief.  And verbs, especially, must be chosen with precision.

I like my Mauna Kea story, though.  It's a bit personal, perhaps . . . somewhat semi-autobiographical.  But yet it's fiction.

This one is sort of like my real life:  imaginative, boring, always climbing some mountain in search of meaning.  And sometimes, when I get to the top, the view is spectacular.  I can see how far my wife has carried me. 


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