girlie jones (girliejones) wrote,
girlie jones
girliejones

Context

I feel like I need to put my last post in context. I think any of those (rough) story beginnings are fine if you are reading the odd short story. But when you're ready a large volume of shorts - I've nearly hit 1000 for this year so far - so many stories just utterly fail to engage me. Not only that, but many many many stories become predictable and written down to a formula. So like, with a story that starts in the middle of action, or dialogue, you *know* several paragraphs down you'll be given context or background and then you'll go back to the action or the dialogue and suddenly that's the whole first page gone without any actual forward motion for me as a reader to want to know what's going on here. I *could* just start these stories on page 2 but I already know that they have wasted the first page and thus, are never gonna crack my final list for the year when better writers have not kissed away a good 500 or 1000 words.

And I think that's what I was basically trying to say. I read a lot of writers blogs about the place and so come across a lot of posts of the "Why won't someone buy *my* story" or "they musn't read X over at Last Short Story ..." variety. I just wanted to say that when you submit a story to a market, you don't submit it into a vacuum. The editor has read a bunch of other stories today, this week, this month. And if yours doesn't pique the interest of the reader, you won't pique their interest as a buyer.

As for brilliant writers or the years best stories ... I think we could probably all come up with a top 300 that would look similar (as Jonathan would say) but even then ... if you put that into the context of 7000 stories published that year ...
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