STATE OF FLASH

FLASH FICTION: The Semester Goes By in a Flash

There are twelve students in each flash fiction workshop I teach at Emerson College in Boston. What is very different about this class in contrast…

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Flash Fiction Exercise: An Appropriated Form, the List

Through exercise, through activity, direct the writer’s eye and mind: the entire world as structure. Not Freytag, not three act, not two realist characters, enter…

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A Flash Fiction Model

When I teach flash fiction I like to guide my students by using great stories already written as models. I do this through a series…

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Using Flash to Teach Reading Like a Writer

On Top Chef, Wolfgang Puck had the contestants cook an omelet. A plain one, just egg and butter and cream. Salt and pepper. There isn’t…

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Reducing Language, Growing Story: Flash Fiction and Word Counts

Though often left out of workshop conversations, those ubiquitous constraints known as word counts have been influencing fiction writers far more than they let on,…

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Falling Safely: Building Revision Bravery through Flash

I’m 45 feet off the ground, strapped into a harness on a molded indoor climbing wall. Even though the only reason I’m up here is…

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Writing Flash Fiction: Letting Go

So you’re going to try your hand at this flash fiction thing, huh? In the beginning you will still very often land closer to the…

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What Isn’t Said

Two of America’s best-known microfictions are poems, written by poets—Forche’s “The Colonel” and Hass’s “Story of the Body”—but both read like fiction, and are presented…

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What Works Works

Writers of flash work the rules in various ways, sometimes compressing traditional narrative to create thumbnails of larger, longer tales, all the needed elements rendered…

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A Sudden Flash, or Into and Out of the Pan

Reviewers and critics have debated reasons for the advent of flash fiction for years.  A dwindling readerly attention span, they say, is to blame, the…

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