My Twisted Writer Brain…

Five Assigned Tasks to Make Your Short Stories Better and Keep You on Your Toes.

As we wind up this month of the short story I have an assignment for you. It’s simple and relatively painless.

To Get Better in Your Craft


Everyday for two weeks read a published short story. Yes, everyday.


In the next month submit one short story with a cover letter to a magazine. Or. Submit a short story to a contest.


Get out and explore the world around you. Open your eyes in a new way to observe the characters, settings and plots that abound around you.

If you need some direction check here.


Take a short story that you’ve written and change up the POV. If you wrote it in third person past rewrite it in first person past.

See how it changes the story. Is it better? Does it add more depth to the character?


Exercise your brain with contests like Writer’s Weekly 24 Hour Contest. It’s run quarterly and only cost $5 to enter. You’ll be given a prompt, word count and 24 hours to come up with an original story.

There’s also another one called Furious Fiction which runs monthly and there’s no cost to enter.

Have a look. Both are great to keep you thinking on your feet. If you don’t win don’t worry as you will have the start or a draft of a short story that you may be able to work on and publish later.

One More Thing…

Overall, it’s up to you, the writer, to keep your focus and energy moving forward.

If by chance you’ve won any contests, or placed, or received an honorable mention, make yourself a certificate, get a frame from the dollar store, and display that success.

Seriously, it’s a good idea and one that reminds you that you’re a writer.

4 thoughts on “Five Assigned Tasks to Make Your Short Stories Better and Keep You on Your Toes.”

  1. Good idea, the framing. I keep all my certificates and contributor’s copies in a box. It’s a nice box, but it’s still a box.
    It’s hard to celebrate your successes and not feel like you’re showing off. I like to post my achievements on social media, but I always feel as though people will think I’m bragging. I debate keeping quiet every time. But what’s the use of doing something that makes you happy if you can’t share it with the people you care about?
    Wow. That went off topic in a hurry. Sorry.
    Love your suggestions, though. You could substitute poetry or CNF for all of them. The POV might be tricky…

    1. lol…You’re not off topic at all. I totally understand the “tooting your own horn” kind of thing but I sincerely believe that as writers we need to celebrate each others accomplishments. Its not a competition and if it turns someone off then that’s their problem. Sending you an email. Get those wins outta the box and out where you can see them! You deserve it and it’s nice reminder of your successes. You should have enough to cover an entire wall by now.

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