How can I write a short story out of a novel?any ideas thanx..

Expert Answers
mstultz72 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Are you trying to condense a short story out of a novel, as some kind of creative writing exercise?

We do a what's called a "found poem."  We take words from a novel, like The Things They Carried, and lift words and phrases from it to make a poem with a similar theme.  So, you could also do a "found story," I think.

A chapter of many novels was first a short story.  You could just use The Invisible Man's "The Battle Royal" (fist chapter) or The Joy Luck Club's "A Pair of Tickets" (last chapter) as examples.

Short stories are much more focused than novels.  There's usually only one setting, no subplot, no time for author's to digress.  You could take a short novel and jump into a section of it, in medias res.  Just pair down the turning point or climax and then stop before a setting changes.

copelmat eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is difficult to give you a specific answer here without knowing more about the assignment and the novel you have finished reading. However, there are numerous ways that this idea might be accomplished. Perhaps you could take a scene from the novel and re-write that scene from a different character's point of view. Or perhaps you could write an alternate ending for the novel that resolves the conflict in a completely different way. Or perhaps you could write a short story that focuses on what happens to one or more of the characters in the novel five, ten, or twenty years after the novel's action ends. Again, you will have to compare these ideas against the assignments requirements but it is possible that any of them could work.

linalarocca eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Why do you not try to write a synopsis of your novel, so you are certain that you have all of the main events and characters in your summary. When you have this as a working copy, it is easier to extend the details of the story and recreate dialogue so that it is shorter than the original novel.The short story must still include a beginning, middle, and end; however, you can eliminate unnecessary details in a short story.

I hope this helps you. You may also want to look at some of the clever short story writers, so you can get a good idea of well written short stories. For instance, Alice Munro is a wonderful short story writer.

bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Have you already written a novel? Or are you wishing to create an original short story from someone else's novel? In either case, I would take one scene (or chapter) and rework it so that it can stand alone upon completion. Or, I might take one character and create your short story by expanding what you know about him.

dovev | Student

I i wish to create one from an original story. Its for an enrichment. Thank you everyone :D

this was meant to be in questions&answers but i guess i didnt put it there  lol