How and when did you decide, or discover, that you were to be a writer?
I remember coming home from school and scribbling stories in spiral notebooks, dreaming of someday becoming a novelist. When I got older, and busier, I took a “temporary” break from my notebooks. Twenty years later, I fell in love with writing all over again and decided to make it a priority.
What inspired you to write flash fiction?
In 2010, while working on a novel, I removed a scene that had strayed too far from the plot. But I’d gotten attached to some of the characters and I didn’t want to let them go, so I reworked the scene into a story of its own. From there, I began experimenting with different story lengths—1,000 words, 500 words, 100 words—and discovered how much I enjoy the challenge of trying to tell a story as succinctly as possible. One of the things I like best about flash fiction is how quickly an idea can turn into a story.
Describe your writing process.
My dining room table serves as my writing headquarters, and I’m there most days from 11 a.m. to at least 5 p.m. I spend mornings working on whatever my priority project is for the day; after lunch, I reread and revise. Sometimes I spend all day on a single project, but most days I’m involved with three or four. I don’t outline flash fiction stories—but I revise them repeatedly. Many times, the final draft barely resembles the first one. (For me, that’s a good thing.)
What was the inspiration behind what was published on FewerThan500.com?
Someone mentioned a roommate who was always borrowing things, and I got to thinking about what kinds of things people share—and what they might be less inclined to share.
What are you working on now?
I’ve been concentrating on novel revision lately, but I try to include some time each day for shorter fiction projects as well. A day that ends with a brand-new story is a good day.
Follow Lori on Twitter: @LCramer29
Read Lori’s story: Generosity.