ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Begin Writing a Short Story

Updated on December 27, 2017
Craan profile image

As Sheila became a children's picture book author, she learned neat tricks along the way. She enjoys sharing her success with you!

Writing a short story is not extremely hard once you have the story’s pictures in your mind’s eye. The magic is to eloquently transfer those pictures into a vivid story. First, begin by imagining a catchy title; this will help keep you focused on your story, so you don't drift off on a tangent. After you've written your fiction story, you can create a specific title or keep your original title idea.

Think of a climax for your main character and tie your story together from the preliminary paragraph to the conclusion. To help you along, you may already have pictures that depict your story, so use these pictures as you are writing to build your story. Think as you look at your pictures, which person, animal or thing will become your story’s protagonist, and create a conflict to build momentum that will captivate your reader’s attention.

If you are writing for children, think of a moral theme, an action adventure or a mystery that your chief character solves, even for an adult short story too. Your short story will flow better if it is more than fifteen hundred words if writing for adults. If you can write a kid's short book in 500 words or less, you're deemed an experienced writing professional, in the genre of children's literature, since your story will likely be, poignant, and to the point without superfluous or needless words.

If you're writing a short story for children bear in mind your reader’s age group. Children’s stories are normally broken down into three categories, from the three-year-old to seven, eight to twelve and thirteen to sixteen age group. Forget about giving an adult center stage in your children’s story since kids prefer to read about other youngsters.

A good children’s short story is usually under 750 words; anything longer will deter a child's attention span, nevertheless; a children's book can contain more or fewer words.

Can you think of an interesting story  just by analyzing this picture?
Can you think of an interesting story just by analyzing this picture? | Source

Imagine a short story idea when looking at pictures!

The picture to the right can depict a captivating short story. Can you think of how to begin writing a poignant short story by gazing at this picture and imagining an action scene of some sort? You can pose yourself a few questions to get started on your story. Perhaps, your questions will be different from mine! Nevertheless, I thought of these things listed below to help get your creative juices flowing.

Why is the woman alone wearing a fancy gown? She looks pensive, has she been stood up, or is she running away from someone? What is she staring at?

Looks like, the woman is riding in a boat too? Where is she headed? Is she, a princess or a queen of some sort, judging by her attire? If so, why is she not wearing her crown?

Alternatively, just perhaps the woman could be hiding from a terrible fright, or contemplating jumping off the ledge! What caused her to run away? Why would she want to end her precious life?

As you are putting your short story together, you should feel comfortable writing about your subject. If not, ask yourself if you rather write for older or younger children instead of adults.

Once you've written your short story, reread it to yourself out loud, and then you may enjoy reading to members of your family after you have polished it. Make sure you have no grammatical or spelling errors, and your sentence structure is intact.

  • The best part of all short stories is the ending, so have a moving conclusion that gives the reason and resolution to the conflict you created for your main character.

This is a start to write a captivating short story, whether you decide to write for children, teenagers or adults. Once you complete your short story, you can ask your friends or family to look it over. They can give you interesting feedback that may give you ideas for writing another short story!

© 2012 Sheila Craan


Submit a Comment

No comments yet.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)