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Thursday Flash Craft: Your Flash Needs Implication

The more I write flash and come to understand it a bit better, I find that I'm drawn to the need for implication in flash fiction, of ways to imply what flash doesn't give you the space to make explicit.

I recently began a flash with "Instead, Sisyphus looks up." I thought that might imply that he doesn't look down, and if there exists the possibility of his looking down, then he must be at the top of the hill--and that might imply that the rock is on its way down, and that we encounter him at the moment before he too must descend.

The question then might be why, of all the times he rolls the rock up and makes his way back down, does this time get the story. So the question might be, "Has he ever looked up before? Why does he look up now?"

The title might be the place to provide or imply an answer. The title "Eclipse" with the boulder of moon passing in front of the sun, implies one answer. "First Eclipse" would imply another. And I love figuring out the real reason he looks up with title after title in search of what makes him look up: "The Stars Come Out." Or "His Wife Flickers in the Sky." Or "Every Single Time." Or "Rock and Roll." Well, definitely not that. So that for me is part of the joy of writing flash, that need for implication.

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You are absolute­ly right because infer­ence is the meat of few words and impli­ca­tion is the sauce that soaks it.

From Randall Brown

Well stat­ed, RD

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