kaige68 (kaige68) wrote in 1_million_words,
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kaige68
1_million_words

The Dribble of Drabbles.

The Dribble of Drabbles

The trouble with drabbles is that they seemed both tiny and insurmountable all at once. Kaige loved drabbles, frequently felt she was a master of the form, but it was a daunting format.

To paint a scene, convey a mood, and portray an emotion in exactly one hundred words - not a word over, not a word under - was a challenge, and not always one easily met. A drabble needs to be exacting, it needs to be able to stand alone. It should be clean and emphatic. It should break your heart, motivate, or excite.

She settled in, she hadn’t written in ages, but she had to make her point. She could do this. She could.(115)


Hello there my good people! I’ve been wanting to have a discussion about drabbles all month long, as I love them, and I love seeing them done. So here we go.

A couple of years ago we had this discussion, and there were some great links to some how-tos, if you want to go look, but I’ll give you my two cents here. I find it much easier to have a punch line or point in mind, spew it out and then whittle it down. I will admit, that I do occasionally have to fluff them up. Those are the ones that usually disappoint me, though.

Drabbles, I feel, lend themselves to fanfic very nicely. You don’t have to describe the characters, the scenery, the locations. They are already supplied. If I tell you, the reader, that I’m writing an H50 cargument (and you are already a fan) you have a mental picture of what you’re looking at, you even know who is driving. Shave off those words right away.

They say to skip your adjectives. This is something they say in general in writing anyway, and while I agree, and I try, adjectives make the difference in tone in a lot of places. Keep an eye on your point when you slice and dice.

OKAY – to my example. My point is to try and motivate other people into excel at precise drabbles. (Sure I’m me and thrilled with all the words, if everyone went 15 words over on a drabble this month that would bring us more than 2,500 extra words and... I digress)


The trouble with drabbles is that they seemed both tiny and insurmountable all at once

So, obviously, I’m missing my tenses, which is a thing I do, and then I don’t need both both and all at once. I’ll lose them both for was that they seemed tiny yet insurmountable. Down 5 words.


frequently felt she was a master of the form

A simple slice-n-dice would be to change was a master of to mastered and you’re already down three words. But frequently mastered the form drops five words, and is a little more emphatic.


not a word over, not a word under

Change eight words to four with no more, no less.


A drabble needs to be exacting, it needs to be able to stand alone.

Change needs to be to is. Change needs to be able to stand to proudly stands. You could change proudly to emphatically, forcefully, or any other powerful word that makes your point. And we’ve lost another six.


It should be clean and emphatic. It should break your heart, motivate, or excite.

Swap should be for is again. And while we’re losing the shoulds, drop the next one entirely: It breaks your heart, motivates, or excites. We’re down another two.


She settled in, she hadn’t written in ages, but she had to make her point.

Now I’m not liking she hadn’t written in ages so while this won’t change much in the word count I’ll feel a little better about it. She settled in, not having written in ages, but needing to make her point. It lost one word, but it made me enjoy it more.


If you’ve been doing your math I’m at 95 words. I could go undo something, but I generally opt to think that if I’ve found a way to lose it, I can do without. And as I’m all about emphasis here, lets add more in that vein.


A drabble is exacting gets the point across with a bigger sledge hammer if I add well done. And to encourage this, let’s slam the end a bit. The last sentence becomes They could all do this!


The trouble with drabbles was that seemed tiny yet insurmountable. Kaige loved drabbles, frequently mastered the form, but it was a daunting format.

To paint a scene, convey a mood, and portray an emotion in exactly one hundred words - no more, no less - was a challenge, and not always one easily met. A well done drabble is exacting, proudly stands alone. It should be clean and emphatic. It should break your heart, motivate, or excite.

She settled in, not having written in ages, but needing to make her point. She could do this. They could all do this!(100)




FLASH CHALLENGE

Give me 100 words. Break my heart, make me laugh, make me angry, make me sympathize. Give me exactly 100 words, make them count!


Also: I missed Monday this week, so... WE'RE ALL AWESOME!
Tags: challenge: drabble/icon, challenge: flash!, monday: accolades, thinky thoughts: writing
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