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Hint Fiction


First, let me tell you about a call for submissions (courtesy of my friend[info]plattcave).  Tentatively scheduled for the fall of 2010, W.W. Norton will publish an anthology of 25-word Hint Fiction.

 

“What is Hint Fiction?” I hear you ask.

 

Robert Swartwood explains it here.   

 

If it’s accepted for the anthology, payment is $25 for the World and Audio rights to your story.  

 

That’s $1 per word, people.  Even if it is a one-time only deal.

 

You can submit more than one entry – see the submission guidelines for details.

  Now, some may consider this a silly notion. If you choose to spread the word about this anthology, you may hear things like, “I’m a ‘real’ writer. ‘Real’ writers tell ‘real’ stories.  They don't waste their time on this sort of nonsense.”  

 

Should this happen, I recommend you just smile and recite the following: 

 

For sale: baby shoes, never worn

 

Credited to a certain Mr. E. Hemingway (though there are those who consider it more legend than fact), it’s a perfect example of Hint Fiction, and it’s only six words. You get a whole twenty-five, and a title to boot.

 

As far as I’m concerned, if that Hemingway bloke can do it, I don’t see why the rest of us shouldn’t have a bash.

[edited extra]  
Wouldn't it be cool if a whole bunch of us got in the anthology?

 

How about you? Do you plan to pitch?

 

Is Hint fiction ‘real’ writing, or a waste of creative energy?

 

How many words does a story need?

 

 




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Comments

( 25 comments — Leave a comment )
bondo_ba
Jul. 18th, 2009 10:49 am (UTC)
As a writer, that buck a word makes it legit in my book.

As a reader... Well, let's just say that the only people in the universe who care about that Hemingway story are writers and potential writers of micro-fiction (the same can be said for the shortest story ever, Clarke's "Report Card on Planet Earth").
jongibbs
Jul. 18th, 2009 01:08 pm (UTC)
I've only written one (so far). I think it's a fun exercise, though you may well be right about the 'who will care?' aspect. :)

maryjdal
Jul. 18th, 2009 10:58 am (UTC)
Thank you for pointing this out. I think I will try it.

"How man words does a story need?"
I don't know but growing up I remember this phrase (actually it may have been the beginning of a song) but to me it was a story because I could clearly picture what came before and after it. -- "Hold my coat. Gimme a rock. I'm from Jacket River."


jongibbs
Jul. 18th, 2009 01:10 pm (UTC)
I think for the Hint Fiction, so long as it produces a striking image, or evokes an emotion, it'll work.

Thanks for sharing :)
ebenstone
Jul. 18th, 2009 11:30 am (UTC)
I use that Hemingway story in my English classes to get them to write. I get some awesome stuff from the kids.
jongibbs
Jul. 18th, 2009 01:11 pm (UTC)
Hehe. I bet they think it's a doddle when you first describe what you want them to do. Then they start :)
bogwitch64
Jul. 18th, 2009 05:21 pm (UTC)
Very interesting. I've never heard of Hint Fiction before. Hmmm...maybe....
jongibbs
Jul. 18th, 2009 05:53 pm (UTC)
Me neither. I'm not even sure the one I did would qualify, though I found it quite good fun :)
black_faery
Jul. 18th, 2009 05:59 pm (UTC)
An interesting writing exercise, if nothing else. I'll certainly give it a go!
jongibbs
Jul. 18th, 2009 06:20 pm (UTC)
Wouldn't it be cool if a whole bunch of us got in the anthology? :)
black_faery
Jul. 18th, 2009 07:25 pm (UTC)
That'd be pretty cool! I'm gonna try and do at least one a day, and see which ones I like best.
black_faery
Jul. 19th, 2009 05:38 pm (UTC)
Really enjoying this as a challenge! I have a couple that I like, which I'll tweak a bit more, play around with the ideas a bit...but trying for new ones every day to see if anything particularly shiny crops up.
jongibbs
Jul. 19th, 2009 05:56 pm (UTC)
And I thought the 100-word drabbles were hard.

As for 'particularly shiny', are you a fellow browncoat perchance?
mylefteye
Jul. 18th, 2009 06:10 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the heads-up, Jon. 25 words, huh? Such profligacy!
jongibbs
Jul. 18th, 2009 06:21 pm (UTC)
It's harder to write than you might think :)
mylefteye
Jul. 18th, 2009 06:33 pm (UTC)
Hmm, LJ's stopping me from leaving a comment. I've tried half a dozen tims now. Hope they don't all appear at once! Anyway, I've just written a tale. Checked the wordcount -- 25! Job done. I'll take a rest now. *mops brow*
jongibbs
Jul. 19th, 2009 08:11 am (UTC)
I actually got an email with your first reply, but (unless you've since deleted it, it hasn't shown up here.

I thought I'd managed another on this morning, an abstract pice called 'Shopping list', then I realized it had been done before -though I had eggs and bacon in mine. :)

kellyrfineman
Jul. 18th, 2009 07:00 pm (UTC)
Thanks for posting this, Jon. I may give it a go.
jongibbs
Jul. 19th, 2009 08:11 am (UTC)
Excellent. :)
clarionj
Jul. 19th, 2009 12:01 pm (UTC)
It's a challenge that's hard to pass up. I'm working on something, but I haven't been satisfied AT ALL yet.
jongibbs
Jul. 19th, 2009 03:37 pm (UTC)
It's almost like Sudoku. You think it's a piece of cake until you actually give it a try :)
peadarog
Jul. 19th, 2009 02:23 pm (UTC)
Good catch! I'll enter this if I remember on 1st of August.
jongibbs
Jul. 19th, 2009 03:38 pm (UTC)
Don't forget, if you promote it, you can enter up to three times :)
maeve_the_red
Jul. 21st, 2009 03:10 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the link.
jongibbs
Jul. 21st, 2009 03:11 pm (UTC)
Good luck with your entry(ies) :)
( 25 comments — Leave a comment )

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