Written Across the Genres contains a variety of fiction and non-fiction examples to explore within genre designations. Stories, excerpts, essays, and poems express the characteristics of each category.
- Meet dragons, a child trapped in an ice chest, a pregnant, homeless teenager, talking animals.
- Flee from revolutionary Hungary.
- Time travel to a bridge into the past.
- Share women’s struggles in love relationships.
- Learn about Aloha spirit and try a new recipe.
- Plan a caper with criminals.
- Join a female attorney threatened by corrupt doctors.
- Escape with a Russian expat from Japanese occupied Shanghai and more
If you would like to sample different genres than the ones you normally read, here are several samples. Click here for the 99 cents KDP special tomorrow, Wednesday.
The first short story in Written Across the Genres, my anthology available on Amazon, is called “Valuable” by Arleen Eagling. Karen, the protagonist is a widow who is in a tool store where she brings “a starter set of six hand-forged chisels of different sizes, each slipped into separate leather pockets they’d lived in for three years.
“She liked how those tools didn’t shriek and tear wood the way power tools did. This store sold both kinds of tools. The heavyset owner stood at a u-shaped counter in the center of the shop but she avoided eye contact with him. She’d need to compose herself first.”
The genre for “Valuable” is Mainstream Fiction. Written Across the Genres has a variety of stories, essays, and novel excerpts, as examples of genres.
When you first started writing, what form did you use–short stories, poetry, memoir, or a novel?
In middle school, I chose short stories and I still like to write them. Next I wrote a few novels, and then poetry. In the afternoon writing class I teach, we are writing a Haiku twice a month based on a photo members take turns bringing to class.
My preferences for short stories and poetry affect my novel writing. The shorter forms make it necessary to be aware of exactly the right words to use and to eliminate too much detail. I’ve discovered that when building character in a novel, choosing the right words is more complicated. One has to think about interspersing physical description, feelings, thoughts, and how to show a deeper, rather than a superficial character.
In my novel, Norman in the Painting, I think I’ve created minor characters that have more personality than the protagonist. I’ve written a post-a-note to remind myself to deepen Jill. She’s the center of the action, readers learn about her values by her dialogue and by the decisions she makes. However I sense she’s hiding something or resisting a close relationship with the reader. I’ll have to figure out why.
What is your favorite form to write?
Katherine Mansfield, a prominent modernist writer of short fiction, wrote, “It’s always a kind of race to get in as much as one can before it disappears.” She was referring to a story idea that arrives and needs to be written down. It’s best not to think about it too much. Writing allows things to unfold that wouldn’t happen when one only thinks the story through. Write it down as soon as possible and as much of it as possible. It’s a first draft, a fragment, a hint of the real story that will develop eventually.
There is no how-to-manual for writing a short story. Maybe setting it aside for a while is important for the right moment to select the point of view or the succession of the events to work out. Every story has it’s own unique form. It can’t be rushed. It evolves over time if we let it. Be alert to when something emerges that we never dreamed we’d express. Don’t resist it, Embellish it. Trust it, and see if it’s right for the story.
Want a goal for 2015? How about 52 short stories?
Celebrating the high school students who win awards in the Tri-Valley Writers Club’s short story contest. Also, Congratulations to the writers whose entries were included in Las Positas College’s anthology this year.
Saturday, we, the Tri-Valley Writers Club, will be handing out awards to the winners of our high school students’ writing contest. I was on the short story committee and we selected first, second, and third winners.
Sunday, I’m invited to join the writers whose stories were selected to be in Las Positas College’s annual anthology. My story, “George W. Did It”, is published. The awards celebration is an enjoyable event, with good food, good art displays, readings by some of the writers, and books available for pick up and purchase.
It’s my idea of a grand weekend.
Las Positas College accepted my short story, “”George W. Did It”, for their 2013 anthology. I submitted a photo too but they will announce artwork and photos later. The photo is of Grace Cathedral’s Ribbon Project.
“The truth is not distorted here, but rather a certain distortion is used to get at the truth.” Flannery O’Connor.
I discovered Flannery O’Connor in a college English class and became an instant fan of short stories because of her work.
Celebrating birthdays with friends for lunch at the Hilton and promoting Jennifer King’s anthology, IMMERSION where my story, “Immersed in Finding Him”, was published.
I read my short story at the Oakland Anthology Book Launch for Jennifer King’s IMMERSION.