Twitter Micro-novels

Several years ago I came across a website or organization of some sort that was touting the concept of the Micro-novel. I’d provide a reference, but I haven’t been able to find one — my apologies to the originator(s) of the idea. The basic concept was to write an extremely brief piece of fiction — it had to be no more than something like 25 words — that would communicate something to the reader. I was intrigued by the idea and shared it with the Writing Wombats group I mentioned in my previous post. We had some fun trying to write Micro-novels, but then I had to go back to my day job and I forgot all about it for many years.


Since then, Twitter has become a huge phenomenon. I recently joined Twitter myself but have been struggling to come up with anything useful to say in 140 characters or less (as you may have noticed, I am rather a wordy fellow). Our Tweeter-in-Chief is trying to rule the world through this medium. Who can compete with that? (Millions of people obviously can, but that’s beside the point.)

Then one day a light bulb went off. I remembered the old Micro-novel concept and asked myself a question. Why not write Micro-novels as tweets? Instead of a word limit, a Micro-novel would simply be constrained by the 140 character limit for a single tweet.

So, I’ve decided to begin writing Twitter Micro-novels. I challenged myself to write five of them as a start. I have put all five into this blog post, and then I’ll tweet out one a day over a five-day period, just to see what happens. If anything comes of it, I’ll do some more, but any future ones will be available only as tweets. Regardless of the outcome, this should be fun. Here goes.

Micro-novel number one, a tragedy:

The apex of Morgan’s career was the day she flew to Dayton. Agoraphobia struck as she entered the hotel room, where she resides to this day.

Micro-novel number two, a play on words:

Hope soared on Jim’s wedding day. Hope sank during the honeymoon. Hope endured thereafter, but she never went gliding or snorkeling again.

Micro-novel number three, a historical novel:

Albert’s thought experiment went very wrong. He thought he was immune to criticism, but the autopsy showed he’d actually been eating cesium.

Micro-novel number four, a psychological non-thriller:

Sometimes the past can be a door to the future. After many years on the couch, Myra learned that it can also just be a door to the past.

And the finale, another tragedy:

Harvey took a step back to admire his work. Later, he realized he’d once been the best window washer in all of New York City.

I owe the last one entirely to Eugene (Skip) Day, of Long Island, NY. Thanks Skip, I stole your joke and made it into a novel.

There they are. Maybe some other writers will seize on this idea and we’ll have an explosion of Twitter Micro-novels. Or maybe not. Let’s see what happens next week and go from there.

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