Journal Entry #17

In class went over the basics and meaning of a short story. We learned that short stories are, as the name suggests, short and limited in length. The problem with a short story is the idea of lacking character development, which we as writer can combat by placing the characters in moments. These moments create the readers’ first impression on the character, for example, if a character is introduced while dancing, one may assume he/she is great at dancing or loves at dancing. Introducing characters through another character’s perspective is also a great way to develop characters. However, the problem with that is the idea of bias. The character we’re seeing through the descriptions of a person can be biased because they may judge that character, or may not particularly like that character. The solution is to introduce the character, possibly, through different perspectives rather than just one. The idea of a character arc is very important. If a character does not change, they’re less interesting when we were first introduced to them. This would allow the reader to be disengaged, uncaring of the character and even the story. They may feel that they weren’t given the fair ending that was deserved. Multiple dimensions of a character is also important; for example, perhaps the character is strong, muscular, but is poetic and nice. The character likes to work out, but they’re not just a muscle head, they like enjoying things aside from working out (trying to not be one-dimensional). From this lesson, the problem I have with my short stories is that it’s not limited in length. I would consider my stories long stories, or short-long stories, and that’s something I need to work on. The idea of having too many unneeded descriptions is what I need to work on in order to decrease the lengths of my stories. When introducing characters, one idea of introducing characters through another perspective was never in my mind. This will be something I will use, because it allows for a better character development that’s not from a 1st person or random point of view. I was a bit confused on what we went over, because I wasn’t sure how I would apply the things I learned to my own stories. But after thinking and listening to the examples and ideas, I was more motivated to use the lessons I learned to improve my writing. I want to evolve my characters rather than have them be one-dimensional, confusing, and uncaring from the reader. I want my readers to care and understand the struggles my characters go through, and to do so I need to add in multiple dimensions and different perspectives.

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