Short Story Issues

Ok. So I have issues with COMPLETE Short Stories.


I don’t have any problem at all doing single or two scene short stories. However, I’m currently expanding one of my single scene short stories for a short story contest to meet the minimum word count, but that doesn’t seem to be the issue. I’ve been able to expand it out to a complete story, but now my issue is staying within the MAXIMUM word count.

I’ve already cut the full story down to what I consider the bare bones, and I’m still at 10,000 words. The max for this particular contest is 8,000 words. The story feels hollow and incomplete even at the 10,000 words.

The story takes place in Herculaneum, during the Roman Empire, in 79 AD. Now for some of you who might know a little bit about European History, you may be able to figure out what occurred that year in that particular region to see where my story leads. However, the love story that I’m writing about feels rushed and hollow. Now, considering the Roman wedding requirements, most marriages were based off of convenience, arrangement, and dowries, I can get away with a rushed marriage, even if the relationship hasn’t fully had a chance “blossom”.  Only, I need the relationship to be believable and tragic by the end. I can’t do that in just the 6 – 8,000 words.

Am I just trying to take on too much for this particular story?  Am I trying to stuff a square peg into a round hole? /sigh

This graphic is getting well used lately.
This graphic is getting well used lately.

I’ll read it over again tomorrow, but I’m thinking I need to abandon my thoughts of submission to the short story contest and work on cleaning up the bigger story for a novella.

Do Agents take on novella’s from no name writers? Would this be worth even trying to do a self publish novella?

Yes, there are a million questions in my mind. One thing is for sure, I think, is that I need to just let this one go, and write the full story. What the word count is, is what the word count is. Wait and see where the story leads me at it’s full length. What was a scene, has blossomed into a story, and I can’t contain it.

5 thoughts on “Short Story Issues

  1. I think it would be worth working on it as a novella, it sounds interesting and has obviously flared your imagination 😀

    I’m planning on self-publishing novellas, they are quiet popular now sure to the ability to read them in a shorter time in today’s fast-paced lives!

    Good luck with it all, sounds interesting 🙂

    1. Thank you. I have other scenes I could work with for the submission, but they would be rushed and not my best work. I can’t submit it if it isn’t my best.
      Thank you again for stopping hey and helping.

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