The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction

Tips from Editors, Teachers, and Writers in the Field

The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction

Tips from Editors, Teachers, and Writers in the Field

Steve Almond  Rusty Barnes  Randall Brown  Mark Budman  Stace Budzko  Robert Olen Butler  Ron Carlson Pamelyn Casto  Kim Chinquee  Stuart Dybek • Pia Z. Ehrhardt • Sherrie Flick • Vanessa Gebbie • Tom Hazuka •Nathan Leslie • Michael Martone  Julio Ortega • Pamela Painter • Jayne Anne Phillips  Jennifer Pieroni • Shouhua Qi • Bruce Holland Rogers  Robert Shapard • Deb Olin Unferth  Lex Williford

With its unprecedented gathering of 25 brief essays by experts in the field, The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction meets the growing need for a concise yet creative exploration of the re-emerging genre popularly known as flash fiction. The book’s introduction provides, for the first time, a comprehensive history of the short short story, from its early roots and hitherto unknown early publications and appearances, to its current state and practice. This guide is a must for anyone in the field of short fiction who teaches, writes, and is interested in its genesis and practice.

«A thoughtful and thought-provoking resource, casting fresh light on the practice of flash fiction. Each essay is a gem, encrusted with outstanding prompts and valuable exercises. Anyone who hopes to write (or teach) the very short fiction form needs to read this book.»

Dinty W. Moore, editor of The MAMMOTH Book of Miniscule Fiction

«The Field Guide to Flash Fiction is an exhaustive, thoughtful, idea-producing guide to one of the lesser-known forms of literary expression, the short short story—I can’t imagine that there’s anything left out of this remarkable anthology of essays about flash fiction. It should prompt the neophyte and the veteran writer to get busy and try one of these difficult stories.»

Anne Bernays, co-author of What If? Writing Exercises for Fiction Writers

«As professors of English, we find The Field Guide invaluable. The essays are cogent, clear and short—to the point. Students wishing to practice creative fiction are provided with tools, theory and inspiration throughout each step of the composition process. Writers reading about literature and then reading the literature itself will discover how effectively The Field Guide presents concepts as it eschews academic jargon in favor of a hands-on approach.»

Jon Redfern and Jack David, editors of Short Short Stories

«How many words does it take to tell an important story? In the many words contained in this Field Guide, written by masters of the short-short fiction form, you may begin to understand. Or not. There always remains the mystery that is fiction itself. Let’s be glad.»

James Thomas, co-editor of Sudden Fiction and Flash Fiction Forward

Tara L. Masih received a BA in English and a minor in sociology from C. W. Post College, and an MA in Writing and Publishing from Emerson College (where she taught freshman composition and grammar). As an in-house editor, she worked for Little, Brown’s college division and Bedford Books of St. Martin’s Press, and she freelanced for companies such as Ballantine Books and Harvard University Press. She has received four national book awards for her editing, a Massachusetts Cultural Council finalist fiction grant, and she is founder of the acclaimed Best Small Fictions series.