Short Stories—Introduction: The Writing Adventure

Writing is an Adventure

On the road to adventure knight-and-scribe-adventure-short-story-writing-class

Welcome, Fellow Scribe!

 

Today we begin a journey. It’s a quest, really—a quest with the objective of writing and revising several short stories and improving our writing skills along the way.

 

Writing itself is a journey, an adventure, or a process. As such, it’s helpful to have a map of the journey so you know what to expect.

 

But I will warn you in advance: just like an adventure, writing has a way of kicking you off the map and dropping you where you least expect it.

 

Your Writing Map

writing-map-medieval-city-writing-short-stories-classYou may have heard of the “Writing Process.” The writing process involves gathering of ideas, turning those ideas into drafts, and revising and editing them to completed documents.

 

It’s called a “process” because you go through a series of steps, but it’s not necessarily like the process you would follow in a recipe. Writing can be pretty messy. We may come up with ideas for one story while drafting another. Then we start to edit a story and realize it’s in serious need of an overhaul, so we go back to the beginning and start all over.

 

It’s better to think of the writing process organically: each stage is important, but you may visit them in any order or even multiple times for a single piece of writing.

 

Here are the stages of the writing process:

  1. Create ideas—This is where you come up with story ideas, characters, settings, and basically any part of a story. Unit One is dedicated to this stage. Unit Two will help you a little here as well.
  2. Draft stories—In this stage, you write your stories to completion. Unit Three is dedicated to helping you navigate this stage.
  3. Edit—This involves adding or cutting the story and developing the strength and flow of the piece. Unit Four and Unit Five are your go to places for editing strategies.
  4. Revise—Similar to editing, revising involves rewriting a completely new draft with all your changes. Unit Six will walk you through revision strategies.
  5. Proofread—While editing involves ideas and story strength, proofreading involves checking for grammar, spelling, punctuation, and formatting mistakes. Though proofreading itself is not heavily covered in this class, you can get a lot of grammar and punctuation strategies from Unit Five.
  6. Publish—There are many ways to publish your stories these days, whether it’s on social media, on a blog, printed and distributed to friends, or actually published professionally. See Bonus Content for a few publishing opportunities.

 

Now that you’ve got the map, let’s check out the gear you’ll need to get you to your destination.

 

A Scribe’s Gear

The only gear you need for this adventure is a notebook  (and, of course, something to write with).  If you can find a sketchbook, that’s even better.

writers-sketchbooks-examples-short-stories-writing-class

Got a quill? Bonus points!

quill-pen-short-stories-writing-class

Next Lesson

When you’ve got your sketchbook, head over to Lesson 1, where we’ll discuss more about what the writer’s sketchbook is and how you use it to get ideas for stories.

 

Class HOME

Unit One

NEXT—Lesson 1: The Writer’s Sketchbook