I like writing flash fiction. It’s quick and fun and easy enough to do. And it keeps me writing. It’s like doing exercises to keep the mind fresh for the longer writing projects. I like to put on some music. Whatever strikes my mood, really. Sometimes there’s a particular song I’ve got stuck in my head and I just keep repeating that. If you repeat it enough times it just becomes part of the background. No distraction.
Usually when I sit down to write flash fiction I’ve got an idea in my head. It’s usually just the grain of an idea, the first signs of something larger. And as it’s only short, it doesn’t have to be elaborate or thoroughly plotted out. It’s an exercise in writing something self contained. Use the music as your muse, or an image, or a video or a thing. I like to start with a title, a phrase that is unusual that sticks in my mind. Sometimes I’ve thought of this well beforehand and decided it’s got no practical application in something more substantial. Then I start writing about something completely unrelated, or at least somewhat unrelated. At any rate, it gives me a challenge, a direction, a bit of a heading. I’ve got the simple goal to make my story connect with my title. Everything else is fair game. Start and end wherever, do whatever in the middle. Narratives are good. Plots are useful. Characters are always fun. Sometimes I make no sense whatsoever, and that’s the point of that particular story. Things don’t always have to make sense. Sometimes I have a story and I throw bizarre elements into it, and sometimes I have bizarre elements and I pull a story out of it. And it doesn’t matter if it’s not the best thing you’ve ever written, it’s just a bit of fun. Be impulsive, try new things, keep things interesting. Sometimes I like to play around with generic tropes and themes, morals and outcomes. Write a story about love or death or growing up or overcoming adversity. Grab an idea and run with it. Sprint to the fucking moon. In less than 1,000 words, try to do more than what some people do in 50,000 or 100,000 words. I like writing flash fiction.