How to write a short story: one version

Let your mind travel–at night before bed, when washing dishes, or cooking, or carrying on conversations that you won’t remember later because you are too busy imagining the fur of a grizzly or the stars above a sailboat at night. Feel something catch, a little itchy burr that makes you restless inside.

Ignore it. Work on other things. Tell it you have no time for such nonsense. You’ve done this before. The weak always wither with neglect.

Feel this one sink its roots in. Allow it no more time than you would for brushing your teeth. It does not care. It grows in soil you’ve pushed to the sides of your mind, forces its way through everything you’ve cultivated in careful rows there, until there is nothing else, until the only words left in you are that story.

Give in.

Write.

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