Fiction Mini-Workshop: The Ins & Outs of Flash Fiction


Fiction Mini-Workshop: The Ins & Outs of Flash Fiction


Level: All

Location: Online
Duration: 2 Days
Begins: March 24, 2018
Ends: March 25, 2018


This is a two-day online workshop.

Flash fiction is one of the most exhilarating forms of literature to write.

Maybe you’ve never tried your hand at writing a very short story, or perhaps you’ve written several and want to generate new work. No matter what your writing level is, we welcome you to explore flash fiction in all its varieties and to get writing and revising.

In this workshop, led by Pen & Paper Fiction Instructor, Cheryl Pappas, you’ll draft and revise a piece of flash fiction of about 500 words.

We’ll first discuss the elements of the form: what is flash fiction, exactly? Does it need to have a plot? How is it different from a prose poem? When did people start calling short short stories flash? We’ll then look at a few exemplary examples for inspiration. After you draft your story, Cheryl will offer ways to revise it by focusing on characterization and next by sculpting away what is unnecessary to your text. In this process of revising, we’ll be archaeologists digging underneath the layers to see what treasures come up—and those treasures will be passed on to the reader. By the end of the workshop, you should have a strong piece as well as a better understanding of the flash fiction form.

Instructor Bio

Cheryl Pappas writes short stories, essays, and poetry. Her work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in The Bitter Oleander, Cleaver Magazine, Tin House blog, Ploughshares blog, SmokeLong Quarterly, and Essay Daily. She holds an MFA in Fiction from Bennington Writing Seminars. In another life, she lived in Florence, Italy, where she had a column writing about the streets of the city for The Florentine newspaper. She is also the editor at the Harvard Art Museums and freelance editor for the Advancing Women Artists Foundation, which publishes books dedicated to raising awareness of women artists active in Italy, both past and present. She lives in Boston with her husband and two sons.