Genre tips

Today’s #AtoZChallenge: Genres–Flash Fiction Genre

The A to Z Challenge asks bloggers to post every day except Sundays during the month of April on a thematic topic. This year, my second year with A to Z, I’ll cover thirty more writing genres (I covered thirty last year!).

Today’s genre:

Flash Fiction


Flash Fiction: fiction that is extremely brief but includes all parts of traditional fiction (i.e., narrative hook, tension, plot, setting, dialogue)

Tipsa to z

  1. Start the story with a great (really great) hook.
  2. Start in the middle of the story which is probably the beginning of the conflict.
  3. Don’t use too many characters.
  4. Keep the length to about 1,000 words.
  5. Any genre is fine.
  6. Color the story with a key emotion.
  7. Limit the number of scenes. There just isn’t enough time for too many.
  8. Stick with one POV; 1st or 3rd person limited is best.
  9. Pick a great title.
  10. Include all the parts of traditional fiction–narrative hook, conflict and resolution, character development, tension, plot, setting, dialogue–just faster.

Popular Stories

  1. Before the Storm by Alex Sheal
  2. Feral by Christopher Moyer
  3. Forty-Four Goats
  4. Housewife by Amy Hempel
  5. Likeable by Deb Olin Unferth
  6. The Outing by Lydia Davis
  7. Ramona by Sarah Gerkensmeyer
  8. School by Melissa Goodrich
  9. Tweet by Sabrina Orah Mark
  10. Unicorns by Scott Stealey

Click for complete list of  2018 A to Z genres

More F Genres:

If you’re doing the AtoZ Challenge, please add your name and blog address to this interactive list. I’ll be sure to visit you each day.


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Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers, and the upcoming Born in a Treacherous Time. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer,  a columnist for TeachHUB, monthly contributor to Today’s Author and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. You can find her books at her publisher’s website, Structured Learning.

64 thoughts on “Today’s #AtoZChallenge: Genres–Flash Fiction Genre

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  4. I did 100 word flash fiction for the A-Z Challenge two years back and I loved writing that way. I ended up expanding some of the stories and publishing a book too so it’s a great way to get your imagination flowing

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Someone in my critique group submitted to an anthology. It was for mysteries that took place in Minnesota. The submission needed to be under 1200 words. He got it down to 1100. Watching him whittle this beautiful story down was fascinating. It made it so much tighter. I’ve never given flash fiction a try, but I think I should. I tend to be a bit more bare bones than a lot of writers. Why use 20 words to say what can be said in 4?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I like spare more than verbose. I wonder if authors are afraid their first try didn’t get the message across so they’ll try again. Because of that, well-done flash fiction is definitely appealing.


  6. I love reading flash fiction when it’s done really well. Molly at Shallow does a great job of it.
    I couldn’t write it myself. I don’t know if I have the imagination needed for fiction, but I sure know I don’t have it for super short fiction!

    F is for (The) Faraway Nearby

    Liked by 1 person

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