Best Laid Plans Of Mice And Writers

5672820439_c09ab6a0b9_mPlotter or pantser is a common question among writers, but regardless of how well we plan, both plotter and pantser are likely to come across the problem both I personally and another member of our group experienced this month: what is the right length for this story?

I had a great short story idea for an anthology with a 5,000 word limit. The currently uncompleted draft (70% done) stands at almost 8,000 words.

One of our new members submitted his first piece, and while it was a short work, the table was almost unanimous in saying this short story needed to be a novel, or at the least a series of interconnecting short stories.

Length. Sometimes the idea you have just doesn’t fit the length you originally intended and your job is to decide whether cutting it down or beefing it up is the right thing to do. Will it kill your story, or enrich it? Give it a try – but always remember to keep the original saved somewhere in case the rewrites aren’t as pretty as you imagined.

About Kirstie Olley

Kirstie is the current President of Vision Writers, has had several short stories published since joining the group in 2012, has been a finalist in the Aurealis Awards and received multiple honourable mentions in the Writers Of The Future contest. She also blogs and has free fiction at her website http://www.storybookperfect.com/
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