Thursday, March 31, 2011

The April Fool's Dare

For the month of April (and this is no joke) I plan to write approximately 30,000 words of short fiction. About 1000 words a day.

This will, of course, make me immediately want to work on novels instead. Tough.

A long time ago, I wrote a number of short stories for the Mick and Casey series, but they kept coming out too long for most of the available markets. So one at a time I started writing them and then I shelved them as they got too long. I recently looked back at some of these stories and found that most of them were almost done. And they are some fun novelettes -- just right for 99 cent ebooks. One is a full novella.

The thing about mystery short fiction is that it's often a one beat mystery. A good set up and one twist. Maybe a double-back on a really good one. But imho, a mystery needs a little more space. Even a one or two beat twist needs room to develop properly. You need space to not only set things up, but to mislead the audience. And you also need space for your characters to play.

I'm eager to let these stories fly at the length they want to be. And I've often thought that the novellas written by Rex Stout for his Nero Wolfe stories were the perfect length for the character-driven light puzzle mystery.

So the first goal is to finish up those stories, but since they are mostly done, that shouldn't take up too much of my word count. I'm also going to write as much new material as possible. I have some odd short stories I'd like to put in a collection, but I don't have anything to go with them -- so I want to write some companion stories. Space operas, more odd fairy-tales. Even a romantic suspense.

And I think I need to do more horse stories, although they will overlap with other genres.

I plan to publish some of those stories here, for the Sunday stories -- including the first one this sunday, in honor of those Mick and Casey stories, a folktale about things that you try to make small, but they only come out bigger and bigger.


Mary@GigglesandGuns said...

Best of luck with your April Goals. Let us know how it's going.


A.M. Kuska said...

good luck!

The Daring Novelist said...

Thanks Mary and A.M.

As for letting you know... that's what this blog is all about!