I already posted some tips on keeping your short story from turning into a novel, but what if you want to turn that literary appetizer into a five course meal? Here are five tips to get you all the way through desert.
1. Second-guess yourself.
photo by Kabilan Subramanian
To hang a lantern (or “hang a lamp”) is to call attention to an inconsistency in the story by having a character notice the inconsistency. It’s the writer’s way of telling the reader “I did this on purpose; it’s not a mistake.”
Kramer bursting through Jerry’s door. Garfield kicking Odie off the table. Michael Scott turning an innocent statement into an innuendo by adding “that’s what she said!”
What do all these things have in common?
They are all arsidities!
What the heck is an arsidity?
Let's hope I practice what I preach.
It’s the end of the month, so I’m giving you an excerpt of real writing, instead of all that instructional stuff I usually post. This is the beginning of a book I haven’t technically started writing yet, and in the true spirit of BeKindRewrite, it will probably be scrapped and completely rewritten before it sees print.
There’s a scene in the Great Muppet Caper, in which Lady Holiday explains to Miss Piggy the backstory for the entire movie.
Miss Piggy: Why are you telling me all this?
Lady Holiday: It’s plot exposition. It has to go somewhere.