Writing Short Stories Beneficial for Novelists?

So, my fellow writers.  Based upon your experience as well as others, do you think that writing short stories (or even flash fiction) can help you become a good novelist?  Sound off below!

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7 thoughts on “Writing Short Stories Beneficial for Novelists?

  1. Absolutely! Flash fiction and short fiction are both great for practicing. It really helps you focus on pruning down your writing so you keep only what you need in a story and you get rid of all the filler. It’s also great for strengthening your word choice skills. It’s kind of like how a runner might do sprints to tone herself up for a marathon.

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  2. Yes, I do! First of all, it is almost instant gratification compared to novel writing. You can see your work finished in a short period of time. Second, I agree with the author above–it helps you narrow down what you need, what is essential to tell the story. Third, it can help break through writer’s block. By having a short-term goal instead of a long-term goal, you can psych your mind out with 500- 1,000 words of flash fiction and boom! Writer’s block is gone. I think journals help with this as well. So go ahead! Write flash fiction and short stories. There is nothing to be ashamed of. It is great practice and can provide a necessary distraction from the work you are stuck on.

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    • “Instant gratification.” This is probably one of the reasons I really like writing short fiction. I’m so anxious and have a difficult time waiting to see my work in published form…does mean that I’m an egomaniac???? 😉

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  3. Yes. I think it helps in numerous ways, but specifically it familiarizes writers with narrative arc and story structure. Short story writing gives writers an opportunity to experiment with different techniques that can only make them stronger novelists.

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