Flash Fiction: for writers, readers, editors, publishers, & fans


Wednesday Writing Therapy: Reflecting Upon Flash

As much as we try to define it, especially once we move beyond word count, flash eludes these definitions, and each new flash and each new flash writer participates in the process of both affirming and recreating some previous sense of what flash should be.


This sense that writers have of flash fiction's "newness" fits well with the current terminology of new media, of screens flashing on content, flickering across it, moving on. Flash fiction might have the power to make them stop, to hold them there for a brief moment longer. Flash has the power to fill that space of the screen maybe without even the reader having to scroll.


Also, Deb Olin Unferth, in The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Flash Fiction talks about flash as "a place for writers to talk ABOUT fiction, and its feats in that weird mysterious way that fiction talks beyond the story on the page." Maybe flash rejects a bit that idea of the fictive dream, asserting itself as what it is, a thing constructed.


I either read somewhere or made it up that Robert Frost said, "The world is not fallen because Eve ate an apple, but because we believe she ate an apple." Flash feels to me as if gets that postmodern sense of the world, that the word after world isn't chasing the Real hoping to capture it, but each word after word is, instead, creating that reality, that construct.


For further reading, check out FlashFiction.Net's suggested readings of flash fiction and prose poetry collections, anthologies, and craft books, by clicking here.

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