So, I’ve started a new thing.

Maybe those of you who follow me on Instagram or are friends with me on Facebook ahve seen them. In my Stories, for 7 seconds, a small blurb of text appears. Just a few lines, not much more, hopefully containing as storye you would find satisfying.

I call them 7 Second Short Stories.

Surprisingly, I managed to snag that hashtag and originate it from my account. It’s all unused and ready to be populated by people other than me if this takes off like I’d like it to.

See, I saw a space that writers weren’t using.

The “sketch space.”

My Instagram and Twitter feeds have been mostly culled, so I no longer follow “innovators” or “personalities,” offering very little in the way of tangible product. Instead, I’ve selected to follow creators. People making and putting art out into the world, with a focus on trying to find new artists and writers to get absorbed into.

And one thing I noticed?

Artists do a lot of sketching. Artists do a lot of character studies. Artists do a lot of line experimentation.

Like, a lot.

Before I took the plunge into prose storytelling, I thought for a long time I could become a comic book artist. My background in the arts kind of got its start there until I gave it up in college. So, perhaps I forgot you have to sketch before you can start hammering home the finer bits. Maybe it slipped that if you want to design a new character from the ground up, you focus on the small bits first. You experiment, play around, until you find that one line that’s better than all the other lines.

So, I thought, what do writers do? How can they properly share their “sketches” with the world?

I’m hardly the first person to think of this. Author Jeff Noon has been publishing Tweet-sized gems over on his Twitter for years.

And The Shortest Story even put theirs on post-cards. For reals.

Writers playing around with getting flashiest-flash fictions in the face of readers isn’t anything new or ground-breaking. Mine, though, has a time limit and a purpose: Practice something new. Try to find story leads from here. Build out this for a long time. Stick to a deadline, one a day, every day.

And we’ll take it from there.


*goes back to editing Project: GREY

Thanks for reading,

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Twitter: @robacosta

Instagram: @robacosta


Check out mine and Arnie Bermudez’s webcomic, The Juan!