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Flash Fiction Genre Analysis

Joshua Rudebush
Professor Harrell
The Writer’s Mind
11/16/2020
Introduction
● Flash fiction is a genre that tells stories with a limited amount of words, yet can fully convey
the plot, grab the reader’s attention, and move the reader to ponder the true meaning of the
story.
● The two flash fictions that I chose were “We Wanted More” by Justin Torres, in which three
brothers start with wanting more and eventually learn that in wanting only to be together,
they are stronger, and “Riddle” by Ogbewe Amadin in which a young girl learns about
witches and thinks that one of her Aunties is one and confronts her.
● Even with a limited amount of words, flash fiction is able to relay all essential parts of a story
in a fluid motion by use of words, and that each sentence carries weight within.
● Flash fiction can captivate its readers by the use of descriptive words that entice the use of
imagination as well as memories that the reader can use to relate to the material.
● This genre also relies heavily on moving the reader to ponder the true meaning of the short
story and whether they can glean their own understanding of or relation with the story.
Use of words and their weight
● When analyzing this genre one of the things that struck me the most was the usage of words
and the weight that was set upon them. We all know a hand full of words that have immense
weight such as I love you and goodbye, but also sequences of words that may not be so easy
to see, such as “I knew it must be true because Mama never lied” (Amadin, 2018) or “‘Body
heat,’ we agreed” (Torres, 2008, para. 4).
● The use of spinning words that can both show and hide their true weight while the reader is
going through the story can help the reader to realize what the story truly says as well as
allow the reader to infer meanings that only they can see.
Use of words and their weight.

“‘People call me different. Am I a “‘Who’s your daddy?’ we said, then we


witch too?’ I asked”(Amadin, 2018) laughed and tossed them into a
shoebox”(Torres, 2008, para. 9)
Captivation
● Another observation that I made while reading these two flash fiction stories was that each
movement in the story held my attention and ended with a feeling of being humbled and
reflective of both the story and memories of my own that I used to relate with. The audience
that this genre would be most welcomed in, would-be readers who enjoy a story that can
almost read like the reminiscence of a memory and of what that memory was able to teach
us or the main characters.
● The use of very descriptive words throughout both texts help to consistently grab the
reader’s attention and steer it in a way that the end of the proverbial path through the story
is shrouded, but with each sentence read, becomes a bit more clear until finally the impact of
the surprise, that most flash fictions use, leaves the reader in awe.
Captivation

“I pondered thoughts I had kept in


the deep recesses of my mind” “‘Body heat,’ we
(Amadin, 2018) agreed”(Torres, 2008, para.4)
Deeper meaning?
● Lastly, one of the major observations that I made was when coming to the end of each story
I was surprised with the twist endings which made me ponder the true/hidden meanings
that the author sprinkled in like breadcrumbs that were left to guide us to this moment in
the end.
● The way that flash fiction leaves the reader surprised is when they are laying out the short
story, there are always breadcrumbs left that usually can only be noticed once you’ve
reached the end. Then when you’re going through to see how this ending could have
happened, you realize all the minor meanings that had been previously hidden within each
sentence and that you feel like you experienced the understanding that the main characters
learned.
Deeper meaning?

“We wanted nothing, just this, just this.” “I would show her the beauty I had only ever seen
(Torres, 2008, para. 10) in my sea of dreams.” (Amadin, 2018)
This trailer from the “We are
Animals” by The Orchard
Entertainment, shows the struggle
that this family, mainly the three
brothers, endure to eke out a life in
their world. Everything from their
struggles of warmth and fear to
being able to enjoy the simple
moments together. This movies
helps to show how the weight of
words may have deeper and
superficial meanings as well as the
captivation of flash fiction through
certain moments pieced together
into a tapestry of life.
Conclusion
● In conclusion, flash fiction are stories that weave sentences that bear weight both hidden
and plain to see which allows the reader to infer their own meanings as well those intended
by the author. They also can captivate the reader and leave them both in a state of reflection
and with a new perspective on an experience of life. Finally, they can let the reader speculate
on the true/hidden meanings that have either been laid bare to see or sprinkled in like
breadcrumbs on a path that the reader couldn’t see until they came to the end of the
journey.
● Flash fiction, I believe, is an exceedingly unique way of storytelling in that you can read
them in a few minutes, but they will leave you in a state of awe and reflection far after you
are done reading and have put the story away. “I would show her the beauty I had only ever
seen in my sea of dreams.” (Amadin, 2018)
Works Cited
● Justin Torres. (2008). Retrieved from https://granta.com/lessons/
● Ogbewe Amadin.(2018). Retrieved from https://firesidefiction.com/riddle
● https://www.itl.cat/wallview/iiiibmR_man-stargazing/
● https://www.pinterest.com/pin/490822059362812139/
● https://disabledduringdisaster.com/2013/02/09/the-pain-of-being-different/
● https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/media/image/newborn-robins-783a342?lang=eng
● https://www.pinterest.fr/pin/412149803395245138/
● https://www.pinterest.com/pin/77757531040704225/
● https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTRZsrj28C4

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