The Short Short Story: An Experimental and Useful Form
The short short form covers many things--from product summary to fable. Here are a few categories and examples. As this forum grows, it will be formatted to make it easy to navigate.
Add your comments and stories.
In many memoirs, moments stand out, and can stand alone--more than they do in fiction. Here's a passage from Mary Judith Messer's 2010 memoir, Moonshiner's Daughter (Doing Well Now Publishers, 2010). A shockingly mean upbringing in Haywood County is relieved by a woman who owned a house by the school bus stop down the road.
We.moved...to another shack in the Ninevah section of Haywood County. This shack was...home where some real bad memories happened...We [the Long family kids] had to walk to the school bus stop down the steep hill below the shack. We passed several houses and a store. We had to wait for the bus in front of Mrs. West's house. She had two children, a boy and a girl. Mrs. West was so nice to us poor little children...We were waiting on the bus in the pouring rain and Mrs. West saw us soaking wet Long kids and brought us into her pretty house. She dried us off with a good smelling towel and gave us all some snack crackers and such, all we wanted. She did this same thing over and over when it was cold, raining or snowing. We kids never had snack crackers any other time and we just loved them. I hope we never made pests out of ourselves. Thank you so much, Mrs. West, for your very kind heart. I will never forget you.
Book summary in a query letter.
Linda Rohrbach, N.C. Writers' Network member, wrote a summary of her novel, The Prophetess I: Payback, a fantasy drawing from her years as a technology writer, in a query letter to an agent. See the full query letter.
What are the varieries of query letter form? What works?