It occurred to me as I considered my chosen genre for this project that I have absolutely no clue what on earth micro fiction even is. It’s hard to start a project when you have no starting point. So off to the wonderful world wide interweb I went.
It turns out that micro fiction is much more popular topic that I ever thought. It has taken off and become something of a art. It is a style of writing that seeks to minimize word count while still telling a complete story. It is not the same as a short story, but it not just a sentence. Jo Johnson writes in his article “What is Microfiction?,” he states that “Traditionally short stories are over 1,000 words long and are found in many magazines and newspapers. Microfiction tends to tell a story in much less than this word count, sometimes even containing no more than 50 words – which is quite a feat in which to tell a whole story.” Talk about a challenge!
To give you, my dear reader, a better idea of what microfiction really is, author Dave Kirby reads examples of his own work in microfiction in this TedX video:
There are several different types of microfiction as well, beyond what Kirby shows us here. As if just slapping on a word limit was not enough, microfiction also includes the realms of flash fiction (ranging from 200 to 1000 words), standard microfiction (ranging between 50 and 250 words), and Twiction, which is a writing style that calls for the telling of a complete story in less than the classic Twitter limit of 140 characters. It absolutely shocked me when I realized how much could be said in so little space. I personally tend to get a little wordy. If there is a good story to be told, you can bet that I will lay out backstories, settings, character interactions, word-for-word dialogue, and enough detail to complete the novel. Granted, I am usually only talking about what happened in a five minute encounter at work that day, but I will make a mountain out of molehill when it comes to storytelling. Imagining creating that same depth and intensity with less than a quarter of a typed page… oh dear.
Looking at this research, I promptly slammed my computer shut and buried my face in my hands. Do I have any idea what I am doing? Sort of. Do I have any clue how I am going to pull this off? Maybe. However, I live my life by one motto-“Jump, and figure out how to fly on the way down.”
Well, I am jumping. Let’s see what happens….