Understanding Flash Fiction

What is Flash Fiction or Micro Story Writing?

● Also known as a micro story, napkin story or postcard fiction, the focus of the story is not necessarily on the character or plot, though it has both. The emphasis of the story is the movement each line peels back a layer that did not exist before.

Flash fiction: Max 1500 words.
Sudden fiction: Max 750 words.
Micro Fiction: Max 200 words.
Twitterature: Max 280 characters
Mini Saga: Max 50 words.
Six word story: Any story with a single digit word count is a category unto itself.


● Short, short stories have been around for centuries. Aesop’s Fables and Grimm’s Fairy Tales are examples of (very) short stories.


What components are included in a Flash Fiction story?
● A micro story, as short as it is, still needs to be a story.
● The main parts of a micro story is the HOOK and the CONFLICT
● A micro story demands TENSION . This is why starting at the FLASHPOINT or the conflict is key to creating an intriguing story.
● Intense language, a shining narrative , and a powerful image are essential.
● The ending is not overly dramatic You want to make your reader think in the end.

Here is an example of a MICRO STORY:

“Careful, honey, it’s loaded,” John said, reentering the kitchen.

His girlfriend leaned against the refrigerator.
“Is this for your wife?” she asked curiously.
“No. Too risky. I’m hiring a professional,” he answered.
“How about me?”
“Cute, but who's dumb enough to hire a lady hit man?” he said sarcastically.
She wet her lips, sighting along the barrel.
“Your wife.”

Here is an example of a 6 Word Story:

For sale. Baby shoes. Never worn. - Ernest Hemingway

Here's an Example of Sudden Fiction:

“Waiting for Daddy”
By Kim Crouch

“Do you see him, Mama? Do you?” Juliette asked, standing near the gravestone. “Here he comes!” Juliette pointed.
A tall man, his broad hat shadowing his eyes, emerged.
“I see him...I see him,” the mother waved to the man.
“Daddy! Come here! Daddy!” Juliette, jumped and twirled.
The mother knelt down to her daughter’s level, looking into her eyes. “Juliette, you have to lower your voice. People are visiting their loved ones here. This is a quiet place.”
The man walked gingerly toward them. “Girls, I’m sorry I‘m so late,” the man said, wiping his brow. “It just took me awhile to get here. I should have come sooner.”
“Don’t be sorry, Daddy!” Juliette answered.
“Do you forgive me?” the man asked gently.
“There is nothing to forgive,” the mother replied softly.
The man let out a deep sigh, knelt down at the gravestone, and placed his hand over the stone. A single tear fell onto the stone. From inside his jacket, the man pulled out two roses, one for his wife and one for his daughter, placed them on the gravestone, then walked away into the quiet cemetery.

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