A “Short” Detour

I’ve taken a short detour with my writing lately. I was at the halfway point in the novel I am working on and I just didn’t think the opening packed enough punch. I did countless revisions of the first chapter. Some good, some not so good. The point is, I knew I had to let it sit for a while I decided which direction I wanted to go in.

 I like to commit to one project at a time. While I have ideas for several more novels bouncing around in my head, I’d become attached to my WIP and the characters I’d worked so hard to develop.

My fingers itched to write, but I wasn’t about to “cheat” on them.

 I decided to move out of my comfort zone. Most of my writing leans towards romantic suspense or thrillers.  I suddenly wondered what it would be like to write in a different genre? Many of my writer friends were trying out the short story circuit. It seemed like to perfect way to try out a new genre without the commitment of a novel.

Over the span of three weeks, I wrote three short stories, and submitted them. The first, a horror story is on a short list for an anthology. The second, The Race to Atlantis, a speculative fiction story has been published in The Quest For Atlantis Anthology which was released in March. The third, a sci-fi, I’m still submitting.

I admit, I got hooked. I went on to write  four more short stories which I entered in contests and two more I am polishing. I have three more I plan to write.  My “short” detour took a little longer than expected, but it was a good learning experience. My writing has become tighter, I don’t waste as many words. It sharpened my editing skills. You don’t have the same luxury in a short story as you do in a novel to build up to an event, or develop a character.

As writers, we all have to step out of our comfort zone now and then. The next time you experience writers block, I encourage you to do the same.


About Lori Gordon

Lori Gordon has created stories since childhood and has the notebooks to prove it! In recent years she’s written paranormal, science fiction, a family novella, and thrillers. She has had short stories published in a variety of anthologies. When fate dealt her an unexpected twist and Lori found herself among the millions of unemployed, she decided it was now or never and wrote her debut thriller State of Panic. She is currently working at work on her second novel featuring Detective Andi Lawson, which will be released in early 2012. She enjoys writing unique, multi layered characters, and loves to both read and write character driven stories. Lori has taken turns in sales, as a marketing executive and entrepreneur and is now focusing on her writing. She lives in Chicago and in her spare time loves to garden and spend time with her pets.
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5 Responses to A “Short” Detour

  1. Glenys says:

    Great blog – I really do think as writers we benefit from trying something new every now and again. Congratulations on the succes of the short stories!

  2. Marian Allen says:

    I never wrote short stories until I joined a critique group. One of the members suggested we put together an anthology of our short stories, poetry and essays, just to exercise our muscles and focus the group. I had to learn to write short for that project. You’re right–it’s a good learning experience. And I congratulate you on your success, too! 🙂

    • Lori Gordon says:

      Thank you. I’ve been lucky enough to have 3 more stories selected for publication. It’s really helped me write tighter and get a better handle on editing.

  3. Hi Lori,
    Three short stories in three weeks is phenomenal work ~ congratulations! You must feel wonderful ~ what a great accomplishment. And publication, to boot! Terrific!

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