My Drabble Workshop
Hi everyone, my name is Rick Haynes, I live in England, and I am an author. I have written a novella, Bolt Out of the Blue – a story for all the family, two collections entitled Drabbles ‘N’ Shorts and Shorts ‘N’ Drabbles, and recently published my first novel, Evil Never Dies – a tale of medieval fantasy. As you can see I have an eclectic taste, but my passion is to write fantasy tales. I have also run two successful Drabble Workshops.
So, does anyone fancy a Drabble?
And more to the point, what is a Drabble?
A Drabble is a self contained story of exactly 100 words –excluding the title.
With so few words why would you want to write one?
There isn’t much scope to let your creative juices flow; you don’t have enough words to play with, do you? Yet, you must deliver a beginning, a middle section, and the killer line, the last line. This makes the writer think, and that is the point, for writing a Drabble makes you think, and think hard. You have to précis, cut back all the superfluous words to the bare bones, and still deliver a little gem. It sharpens your senses and makes you a better writer.
A book needs to have pace in the right places, and your Drabble experience will help you in ensuring that your words flow when needed.
You do not have the luxury of long descriptive passages, or length of dialogue, so paring back is the only way forward. Every sentence and every word will have to be checked, and rechecked until you are happy with your beautiful little Drabble.
Then you can sit back, admire your mini-masterpiece, and use the new skills in writing longer tales.
Tired of writing your epic novel? Need a change?
They say that a change is as good as a rest and boy oh boy, is that true. I will often take a break from my next book by writing a Drabble. I can be inspired by a picture, a name, even a post on Facebook. This can re-energise me before returning to my main project. It is also a great way to get my work seen by others, using social media etc. Clearly we all need to promote our work. And as I can write a Drabble in any genre, I also have fun and can experiment.
And that point is a fundamental one. Writing 1000/2000 etc. words a day can become a chore. So, take a break, write a Drabble and have fun.
As Stephen King wrote.
“When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.”
Drabble writing will assist you in becoming a better author. But there is more.
A Drabble can often be the catalyst for a longer piece of work. One of my tales, about a fortune teller, quickly turned into a four part story, another into a full length tale.
Drabbles are like acorns – from little tales do big stories grow.
How do you write one?
Think of a theme and jot down a few ideas and away you go. It would be unusual to write less than a hundred words; I never do, and whilst pruning is never easy, the skill improves as you write more. I usually start with adjectives and move on from there.
Make sure that your last line is … as per the Matrix … The One.
Then post and celebrate.
Congratulations on joining the … very addictive club.
Want to read one? Here is my award winning Drabble from the Virtual FantasyCon competition.
As the dew gently caressed the leaves in the wood, a soft light slowly grew in luminance. The coalescing sparkles began to take the shape of a young girl. A pure white gown swished and swirled around her as she moved towards the graveyard, her slender feet leaving no tracks in the soft soil.
The fresh grave had been hastily re-filled but all her attention was focused on the sobbing cries of a terrified infant.
Holding out her hands to the cold earth, she spoke soothingly.
“Come forth you beautiful child, for I will take you to your true home.”
The End … nearly.
I thank you for reading this brief insight into the world of Drabbles.
I wish you every success in your writing endeavours and do remember
… have fun.