Flash Fiction, Main Genre: General, posts

Micro-Stories: What are They, Really?

Lately, micro-fiction has become more popular — of course, like anything else, it can be an art form. I decided to embark on a monthly quest to do two-sentence stories, but first, let’s ponder micro-fiction in general.

Sometimes, what is labeled as “micro-fiction” is more of a quote or a statement than an actual story.

Examples: Micro-Stories or Not?

Take the following examples, which are based on the same idea.

“The key to happiness lies in your own hands.” This is more of a motivational quote or statement. It’s basically stating a belief or a fact.

However, is this a micro-story? Micro-stories obviously go by different standards than regular stories, which by definition, generally have a beginning, middle and end —even if those are all just inferred.

With a micro-story, a lot of it is inferred, since the story is so incredibly short. A micro-story then should at least suggest a beginning and end — or a middle, if the micro-tale happens to begin more at the start or wrap-up.

A very simple way of turning this into a micro-story would be to turn it into dialog:

The wise owl uttered his words slowly: “The key to happiness lies in your own hands.” The owlets’ eyes got even wider, as they listened eagerly.

Or alternatively:

He knew the keys to happiness were in his own hands — but in all those years, he had not unlocked the right door.

In the above example, there is a lot inferred about the character’s past. He had not found happiness, obviously. Had he tried different doors? Did the keys “seem” to fit, but he found he was wrong about what he ultimately found? Would he eventually the right door to open?

The last two examples fall into the micro-fiction category easily, as they include characters and/or suggest a story timeline of some sort.

That brings up the phenomenon of the really short stories that are popping up these days: the two-sentence tales. Looks like it’s time to try some…coming soon!

Related to “Micro.”

 

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Flash Fiction, Life Stuff, Main Genre: Nostalgia, Microfiction, Nostalgia, posts, Wisdom

Remembering Through an Old House

Microstory: The old house was filled with things that reminded them of themselves, of each other...even if these things were just in the background.}

 


 

We’re living in a time when retro and nostalgia are in style more than any other past era. So what things do we tend to remember? We obviously remember the big things…the big events, things that changed our lives, the milestones.

But there are also things in our minds that are hidden — things that are not linked to any big milestone, but when we see them in a photo or suddenly hear them mentioned, we get a more vivid recollection of the feelings of a particular time in the past than the polished memories of the big events always at the front of our minds.

How is it that these little things in the background sometimes live so strongly in our heads? They didn’t seem “important” at the time — but they were powerful enough to sometimes spark a stronger reaction than memories of an entire big event.

There is a saying by Cesare Pavese, saying, “We don’t remember days — we remember moments.” Maybe those little things remind us of the moments.

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Related to the prompt “Retrospective.

{More nostalgia posts and flash fiction}