Friday, 8 July 2011

Poetry and Short Stories

Another aspect of my course gave me an option to write short stories as well. I had been writing short stories since I was nine but I didn't have any of those stories lying around anymore, where they went I will never know. But I decided to attempt writing a new short story. After that I also started writing poems. I did not know whether my poems were acceptable so I decide to take a night class with an English professor who was offering a night class course.

This nightly journey into the world of poetry and short stories was quite enjoyable but sometimes a bit boring. I didn't find my instructor was all that helpful sometimes. Yet at other times it was interesting what he would come up with for us to write about. He would offer suggestions, maybe a scenario and each one of us would go home and write a different version of what he had laid out. I enjoyed this type of exercise very much.

Once back in class he often read some of the assignments. And he would mark us on our efforts. Many of my class mates were very unfamiliar with the process of marketing. Since our instructor had nothing to offer in that regard, I, who had been sending out queries for awhile offered to help.The next time we met I brought along lists of publishers for what we had been doing and explained to the ones interested how to market their stories. Our instructor didn't seem to be too interested in marketing, saying that writing was the hard part, of which I hastily disagreed saying that marketing was harder than writing.

There was one story in particular that I had written that he seemed to enjoy very much. And about a year after I had taken the class, the professor contacted me and asked if he might have permission to use that story for an example in his classes. I agreed that would be fine and that was the last I ever heard of it.

Since we didn't do much with poetry I decided to take a bunch of my poems to my instructor and see if he would read them and comment. He did, but some of the comments were not what I expected. For example I wrote one poem called Char that was about a forest fire. He commented that he had no idea what the poem was about. He did this on a couple others also. Didn't realize my poems were so hard to understand.

So, there is a market for short stories out there. I do believe that the lifestyle of most people today makes it difficult for a lot to sit down and read a novel as much as they might like to. On the other hand, a short story can be read in no time and can be a very satisfying substitute for the person who loves to read but just can't find enough time for something long like a novel. So keep writing those short stories. Happy writing everyone!

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