6 Ways To Experiment In Short Stories


One of the best things about a short story is that you have the opportunity to experiment. It gives you the chance to do something you have never done before.

Here is a list of suggestions if you want to try something different. You can use these suggestions for any story. It doesn’t have to be for this month’s prompt.

  1. Change viewpoint: if you have been writing in the same viewpoint, try a completely different one.
  2. Dialogue only: flex your dialogue muscles and see if you can tell a complete story with only dialogue.
  3. Descriptions and telling: I am a huge fan of showing, but I need to practise telling too. Try rewriting your story with telling only.
  4. Unreliable narrators and anti-heroes: try writing a character who isn’t a perfect guy or a hero. If you always bad guys, try writing a story about a character with a very strong moral compass.
  5. Different genre: pick a genre you have never written in before.
  6. Devices: try adding a new element to your story. Thinks of speeches, email, letters diary entries, songs, recipes.

These are only a few suggestions and it will be tricky and you may not end up with your best story, but you will have learnt something new and done something different. This is about learning after all.

Don’t forget to sign up for our competition: 12 Short Stories

If you want to learn how to write a short story, join us for Short Cuts.

 by Mia Botha

If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

  1. 12 Short Stories – Competition Time!
  2. Cut The Strings – Submit Your Ninth Short Story Today
  3. How To Show And Not Tell In Short Stories
  4. How To Make The Most Of Sequels In Short Stories

If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg or sign up for our online course.