Each Friday we post one new writing prompt created by a Sarabande author. Prompts like this one are included in our online Reader's Guides along with discussion questions and suggested reading to accompany each title. So if you can't wait a week for the next prompt, visit our Reader's Guide page to find them all in one place!
This week's prompt comes from Kyle Minor, author of Praying Drunk.
Consider that time in the short story need not be compact, that the story need not start in the middle, that the reckoning at the end need not arrive immediately after the end of the events. All of time, recorded and not, is available to you. Like James Michener, in his novel Hawai’i, you can stretch backward toward the origin of things, or like Alice Munro, in her story “Friend of My Youth,” you can end years before the beginning, with news of the unarticulated things that preceded, which, as it turns out, maybe were the cause of everything. Or you can flash forward at story’s end to the end of time, or you can begin at the end, or you can try out everything in-between. Time is calling to the writer, saying: Use me.