My dear friend Sally Zigmond has begun a short story writing course on her blog, The Elephant In The Writing Room, and even if the short story is a form you’ve never even considered, I urge you to take part. Sally is a fabulous short story writer; she has won and been placed in numerous literary competitions, and spent some years editing QWF, a literary magazine. More to the point she’s a fantastic teacher, and has helped all sorts of writers across all sorts of genres lift their work from passable to publishable. She really knows her stuff and is one of the few people I trust absolutely to criticise my own work (so she must be good, right?).
Over the next few weeks she’ll be giving you several exercises to complete: the first one is available already. Don’t be fooled by the apparent simplicity of the exercises: they’re very carefully planned and will slot together very cleverly by the end of her course, by which time she’ll have given you everything you need to write prize-winning short stories–except for talent and hard work, of course. Those things you have to provide for yourself.
And here’s the really good bit: Sally has asked you to email your efforts to her, and has suggested that she’ll use some of your submissions in tutorials in the future. This is a brilliant opportunity to get some very valuable feedback on your work, all for free.
Now, go on over to her blog and get writing. Good luck. Let me know how you get on.