How Flash Fiction / Microfiction Can Help With Your Writing

How can flash fiction—super short stories, usually under 1000 words—help your writing? My guest this week, Rhianne Williams, is here to share the secret. Take it away, Rhianne.

Writer’s block is something we all face; however, it’s just in your head. I know, you’re probably thinking, well obviously, Rhianne, but hear me out. If you weren’t thinking about how quickly you need to write this book, or how the story was going to play out, would you still come to a point in your writing where you think—crap, where do I go from here? I think not.

My favourite thing to do in these situations is either start a new scene in the same story or simply find a prompt on Pinterest and grow a scene, or short story from there. This helps because it gives your mind a break, kind of, from the story you’re already writing and you release your imagination from its cage and let it flow.

Most authors will be writing more than one story at a time.

This is because of writer’s block. At the moment, I am writing two different genres of novel. The Collective—A Pirate Adventure is a fantasy, adventure novel that blows my mind every time I write something for it, and For Love Or For Money (not the official title), which is a murder mystery novel where a TV show contestant is killed before the final episode. When I get stuck from one novel, I switch to the other so that I have a fresh go with my imagination. I keep writing and it helps.

I think this would be the same even if you wanted to use microfiction. So while you’re writing a blog post, or a novel, or short story, when you get stuck write, something completely different. Go get yourself a Pinterest account and search writing prompts. Pick one that makes you think “yep, that’s my story” and write a short scene or story for it. The worst that can happen is you get blocked again, so what do you do? Switch!

Of course, there are the times when this method doesn’t work. Whether it’s because your mind feels overworked or stressed, it can be frustrating to not be able to get the words out. Take a break. I usually try to keep these short, so for me a writing break would be a weekend off doing other things with my other half, but for you it might be losing yourself in a good book, finding clarity by going for a walk or simply taking a long hot bath. Whatever works, keep trying until you find it and make sure you share your work!

Need some to start you off? Here are my favourite five Pinterest writing prompts;

You are a clone of a master criminal, and you were made to find your original.

She stood on my toes as we swayed on the kitchen floor, old enough to drink but not old enough to dance like adults.

The problem with a mask is that one day you can't take it off.

There were a list of things that could have gone wrong that day, but being shoved down a laundry shoot was not on it.

I’ve got one here, and I’m working on a new one. Let me know in the comments if you’re working on anything, share links so we can all see your amazing works!

Want to read more articles from knowledgeable guests? Pop on over to the Guest Writerologist archives and explore.