One of my favorite types of short story is the the microfiction or flash fiction style of short story. Although varying in length, these tales are told in extremely limited word counts -- often under 500 words. And unlike a picture book manuscript of a similar length, these stories are published unillustrated forcing the author to rely solely on words. Some good examples of children's microfiction include Aesop's Fables and some of the shorter fairy tales.
As with all short stories, these have at least one major character and a full plot with beginning , middle, and end. There is a conflict and some sort of obstacle for the protagonist to overcome. The story can be action-packed or quietly introspective, but one thing all of them have in common is their length. A micro-fiction is short.
And that brings me to this week's #storystarts Twitter contest. It is to think up a short story title. The winner of the Twitter contest will get an ARC copy of The Beastly Bride, a short story collection edited by Datlow & Windling. They do some really great teen anthologies that are themed around various folk, fairy tale, or mythological theme.
However, when you choose your title think carefully. On Friday I will be doing a blog contest that will be incorporating my #storystarts contests. I'm not going to tell you exactly what the contest is until Friday, but I will let you know that the prize will be a three chapter (or 3 PB manuscript) critique.