Writer’s Awareness; Can Length Count in Style?

What defines a writer’s style?
Personally, I think it’s as unique as a fingerprint because it takes every single aspect and element of writing to create a style–it can vary from details as tiny as the different words for similar things such as soda versus pop (if that sounds like a familiar reference, I applaud you, though I wasn’t trying to be clever or punny referencing one of my favorite characters on modern television) to as large as the genres they work with.

Length is a large part of genre. In several instances, it’s a key indication of a certain genre–a general fiction novel can average about 80,000 words while a scifi or fantasy novel needs to be at 90,000 or so at a bare minimum to be a piece of that particular genre. Why? It doesn’t take many words to describe what a regular old notebook is. It takes even more to describe the technology and logic behind a holographic book or an enchanted scroll that can translates languages depending on the origin of the ink.

As I work on the Diary of Eloise Vacarro, not only do I feel like I’m struggling with the format, but I also believe I’m struggling with the length.

A short story ranges between 1,000 and 40,000 words long. I’m almost at a quarter of the maximum before it’s a novella. What’s my problem? I want the length to be reasonable for a 99-cent short story, yet I need it to feel complete. Why is this a problem? What I thought was a short story is actually more complex than I had originally thought.

As a piece is a living entity of its own like a child is to a parent, it seems like all the pieces will be novellas at the least and I want to at least have a few short stories. However, that may not be the case.

If that’s how it is, then that’s how it is. However, I still want to try and create short pieces related to the larger body of work to the best of my abilities. I want to try; also like a child, I cannot force what isn’t possible. If I can’t, then I can’t.

However, this is a big issue for me because I wonder if this goes beyond this particular universe, that it’s just not in me to write short stories at all.

Why is that an issue?

I want to write short stories too! I want variety!

I’m aware of how I write poetry; the ability comes in random bursts that must be acted upon or else it’s gone forever. Almost every poem was written at the spur of the moment and then left to be with minor editing for typos while others were edited several times. Those were closer to being commissions, but the motivation to be written for another to that extend may not count if they chose over half the words (no offense to my old professor, but that really dehydrates a piece from the original writer’s touch and makes it theirs, and at that point, it’s not as great of a piece and was technically just typed by a representative…).

I have several ideas for different short stories not related to the universe of my other piece, but I have my fair share of struggles with that too. The Diary of Eloise Vacarro just happens to be the one I’m stuck obsessing over the most right now because I’m struggling with it the least–a lot of the world was already built, even if it wasn’t written down yet.

I’ll try and get started on several idea, possibly just turning my brain off and letting my fingers play on the keyboard.

Keep an eye out for updates.


New Short Story In Progress: The Diary of Eloise Vacarro

Yes, the piece is about vampires, particularly a converted vampire surviving anarchy by professionally hunting her own kind. Since my vampires are in reflection to the foster care system, I’m sure that gives hints that she’s not exactly normal…

A character I based a lot on one of my foster sisters has minimal presence in the main series (I’m working on it I swear!) and I wanted to give her a chance to show how she came to be, even if it’s just a smaller spotlight in and on a different stage.
I feel as though she’s supposed to be a standard case study for what her kind have gone through, even though her particular story may seem like an exception. In some ways, she is, but overall she isn’t–I’m hoping that it gives more indirect world-building and can stand on its own. It should include everything that would be in the main series and anything particularly special that happens in this will happen in the main series so that they don’t feel like missing pieces.
A lot of what she’s going through is stuff that I’ve been going through while couch surfing this past year, but like I said, Eloise is based on someone else, not myself. I insert my own ideas of what I’m trying to reveal instead of inserting myself as a person anyway. Most of us experience this kind of stuff while we’re still in foster care. I didn’t get to until now. Whether that’s good or bad is still up for debate, but it’s an important part of our lives that I need to include. I may feel like there’s one or two tiny pieces missing yet, but I’m making progress.

With my new health problems that are only getting worse, I may have more free time to finish it, but the detail of my strange-for-my-age problems are for a post on another day (mostly because I’m not completely sure what to say if I have to see a specialist on a part of my body I didn’t know was really a thing).

I’m also trying an experiment with formatting and linking, making it feel a little more like an online book. I don’t think this one will be too long for it to have problems, but it seems like it will work for pieces with a small number of parts and chapters. I’m going to try and think of how I can share when a new chapter is up like how blog posts work (having them as pages instead of posts just looks better and makes them easier to find), but for now I can probably just make a blog post with a link to the page itself. Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions on this.

I’ll take down the short story once I have the final chapter ready. I won’t post it. Once it’s complete, I’ll put it up on Kindle Direct Publishing. I really wish I could just have it for free, but I suppose that’s what a blog is for.

Click Here to Read The Diary of Eloise Vacarro

New Website (In Progress)

I apologize in advance if I seem to have a negative tone, I may have sprained my ankle slipping on ice this morning.

I wouldn’t say I’m moving, but my experimentation with wix.com for the Progenitor site took on a life of its own…

I’ll make the link available when it’s ready, but I’d like to have plenty of pieces available first.

In that regard, I may make artwork (graphite and characoal for sure) available for sale–the pieces will be priced to at least buy back materials used and cover shipping and handling on my end. Anything that isn’t submitted for contests and literary magazines will be made available. Even having the original advertized on the web during the time of submission can count as publication and automatically disqualify a piece from entry.
Since I need to work on pieces to submit for literary magazines and I’m stocking up on supplies for my Art Appreciation final, paintings may be available. I may not have thoroughly worked with paint in about five years, but I’m not expecting any art to even compare to Da Vinchi. Even if some say “it’s the internet, people wlil buy anything”, I don’t see it as an excuse to not put effort into what I create.
There’s a possibility I’ll work on short stories to sell individually for 99 cents no KDP, but I’d prefer they would be over 10,000 words to make it worth the money in length (having previews and blurbs available are always nice too). They’d be compiled into collections later, but that wouldn’t be until there’s enough to compile into a paperback.

Please feel free to share what you think. I’m curious to know what everyone thinks about purchasing art.
(I’ll try and offer concept work to present on this blog, but I currently don’t have anything with me. I put in the same amount of effort into the concept work as I do the original, even if the concept piece is oeftn smaller and on cheaper paper.)