Flash Fiction For Aspiring Writers: Our Apartment


Everyone knew about the apartments around the tennis courts. They were old and decrepit and most people didn’t want to live there. But the rent was cheap, really cheap and my friend and I decided that it was the perfect place for two university student’s trying to save money. Plus, there was a liquor store right around the corner and nobodycared if you partied here.

They apartment was clean enough or so I thought, until one day I see this rat scurrying across the muted yellow living room carpet. ” A rat” I screamed, at my roommate Laura, ” a rat.” I hated rats and so did Laura. We chased it and left traps for it with peanut butter.

At night in my room I was so thankful the carpet was right against the crack in the door so no rats could get in and I always left my room door closed. But suddenly something fell onto the bed right on my head. I screeched and turned on the lights. Sure enough a rat had dropped from light fixture in my room and he had three little friends up their with him.

Word Count: 189 ( Sorry I know a little long but I’m working on it!)

29 thoughts on “Flash Fiction For Aspiring Writers: Our Apartment”

  1. That’s funny. 😀 From a writing standpoint, aside from grammatical errors, there nothing wrong with how this has been written but it would be easy to tighten your word count. Flash fiction is about using words effectively so here’s some pointers. “… old, decrepit and, people…” – The first ‘And’ is unnecessary; a comma can be used instead. ‘Most’ is a good modifier, but we already assume from your description of the apartments that ‘most’ people wouldn’t want to live there, so you can get away with dropping the word. The next sentences could be rewritten (to save words) as: “But the rent was cheap. My friend and I decided it was perfect for two university students trying to save money.” There are other tricks too. ie. Living-room; hyphen makes it one word. You also don’t need to add room-mate in front of Laura as by this point the reader assumes that; though from a structure standpoint you should have introduced Laura at the early point with ‘My friend, Laura, and I’. “I hated rats. So did Laura.” This only saves one word but in flash fics every word counts. Changing wording can help too. For example: “We chased it, then filled traps with peanut butter.” Or: “That night I was so thankful the carpet blocked the crack under my door so no rats could enter.” Beware of lines like “I always left my door closed” It’s a good character building sentence but highly redundant in context as for the carpet to block the crack it must the must be closed. Hope these give you an idea of how to write a concise flash fic. 🙂

    P.S. Sorry for the loooong comment!

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    1. I think I will have to find my own way to tighten the word count. What works for you does no necessarily work with my style of writing. I don’t think that word count is particularly important as style, the story, and how you are telling your story. But thank you for your comments.

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      1. My pointers are nothing do with style. I’m not suggesting rewriting with my examples; they were just aides illustrating how it could be done. Mastering flash fic can actually improve your ‘voice/style’. Like I said, there was nothing wrong with how you wrote it in the first place. Its just outside the word count.

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      2. My pointers are nothing do with style. There is no need to re-write . Mastering flash fic can actually improve your ‘voice’. Like I said, there was nothing wrong with how you wrote it in the first place. Its just outside the word count.

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  2. Great story…you had me wondering when those rats would show up…oh my on your head in the middle of the night…and a family to boot! yuck! I had mice last fall and my cat was of no use, she just wanted to play…so traps and peanut butter worked.

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  3. Yikes a rat on your head?! Creepy! That actually happened to me in my first apartment, but a spider. *shivers all over* I like the twist at the end, I sure hope they eventually caught him. And if you’re looking for places to cut words, you do repeat lines but worded differently. You could easily cut some of them, use slightly simpler sentences (acceptable in flash fiction, it actually builds it more) and I bet you could get it down to 150! nice job.

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