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Ideal for anyone interested in writing short stories or for introductory courses in fiction writing, A Short Story Writer's Companion is a highly accessible guide to the craft of creating short fiction. Written in an engaging style, this book enables beginning writers to recognize what works in writing short stories, what doesn't, and why. Part One of A Short Story Writer's Companion discusses fictional truth and significant detail, helping students of the form to make good sense of the often taught creative writing maxim, "Show, don't tell!" Part Two delves into the elements of fiction: character, point of view, plot, setting and time, metaphor, and voice. The author uses specific examples from a variety of widely anthologized short stories to demonstrate how each component functions as a part of the whole and offers advice on the techniques of using each of the elements successfully. Part Three closely examines the fiction-writing process and helps guide writers who may never have written a short story before through drafting, revising, and polishing short stories of their own.
PART ONE: FICTIONAL TRUTH AND SIGNIFICANT DETAIL
Fictional Truth Significant Detail
The Abstract Versus the Concrete
PART TWO: THE ELEMENTS OF THE SHORT STORY AND ADVICE ON TECHNIQUE
"We Are Our Desires": Character
Round Versus Flat Characters
The Eye of the Story: Point of View
The "Why?" Behind the Power of Plot: Shaping the Short Story
Conflict, Climax, and Resolution
Story Versus Plot
Plotting Short Stories Versus Plotting Novels
"The Lesser Angels of Fiction": Setting and Time
"The Connectedness of All Living Things": Metaphor
The Writer's Muscle
A Word of Advice About the "Fancy Stuff"
The Writer's Signature: Voice
PART THREE: NOTS ON THE FICTION-WRITING PROCESS
Write a Short Story!
How to Begin
"The Habit of Writing" by Andre Dubus
Galleys for "Snow Dreams" by Tom Bailey
"Snow Dreams" by Tom Bailey A Last Companionable Word Works Consulted Index