At Flood’s Edge: Week 1 Review

There was a night a few nights ago when I couldn’t sleep. It happens rather often.

As I stared at the dark ceiling, I realized that I should write a weekly recap of the At Flood’s Edge project. It would be a chance to talk about things I’ve learned so far, things I’m doing to promote the project, anything interesting that pops up along the way, and to take a snapshot of the stories so we can see how they’re doing.

Project Launch

This week saw the launch of both the project and the website. The website still needs more work, but the major pieces are now in place. Votes are coming in, and for that, you guys rock.

But we need more. More readers, more votes, more opinions. It’s time to spread the word about the project. I’ll do what I can on my own, but I’m also going to need your help. Telling just one person is a enough. More is better. Will you help me beat the drums of promotion and see where this thing goes?

Now that the pieces are in place, I can spare some extra brain cycles towards thinking of other possibilities for the stories and the project. I considered trying to involve flash fiction publications, but I think the turn-around time (often weeks or months) is prohibitive.

On Editing

The blistering pace that I’ve set for myself means that it’s difficult to edit. Part of writing flash fiction is merciless editing: you weigh each word and the value it brings to the story: Is that word carrying its weight? What about that clump of words over there, all clustered and talking amongst themselves? Are they doing their part? Can they be replaced with sleeker models? But because I’m writing in limited time (one sitting), I don’t always have the luxury of combing over a story.

Does this mean my stories are worse for the lack of time? Or are the stories read in light of this knowledge, and thus it brings a sense of raw immediacy (at best) or the faults are at least ignored (hopefully)? That’s something only you readers can answer. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

On that note, please keep up the reading, commenting, and voting. If you don’t like something, vote that sucker down. I’ve yet to see any 1s. There’s been only one “2” rating. The stuff I’m writing can’t be that good that consistently. So, be merciless. It keeps the project honest via the ratings, and it keeps me honest so that I’m always trying to improve my writing. If you’re feeling kind, vote it down and then leave a comment to say what you didn’t like about the story. How’s that for a deal?

Ratings Over The Long Haul: A Prediction

Over the long run, I’m expecting to see a sort of inverse bell curve in the ratings. I’m expecting these early stories to come out with higher ratings. Some of them are little idea fragments that I’ve had kicking around for a while, so there’s probably been some sort of story soup / idea simmering going on in the back of my mind.

What happens when I burn through most of those? I expect to see a dip in the ratings as I scramble to keep writing interesting stories and ask why the hell I decided to put myself through this.

Later on in the project, I except (hope?) to see a rise in the ratings as I get a better handle on the form.

Is this what’s actually going to happen? I have no idea.

Part of the fun in this is seeing how things turn out when the cards are down, when the cookies crumble, and all that stuff. It’s been interesting even in the first week as I see stories rise and fall in the ratings.

Last But Not At All Least

Thank you for the all the support so far. It’s critical and much appreciated in this early phase. Stories are nothing without readers. This project is as much yours as it is mine.

Week One Snapshot

1 #6 Perfect Days
2 #1 The Light At The End of the World
3 #5 Correct Me If I’m Wrong
4 #3 Dinner Reservations for One
5 #4 Applesauce

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