Day 15 – The List

Welcome to Week 3! You’re still here! I’m very impressed…

This week we’ll be looking at some of the fun ways short stories can be written that are nothing like mini-novels.

The Prompt

Write A Story In The Form Of A List

Ideas for your list story:

  • Shopping List
  • 10 Things I Hate/Love About You
  • To Do List
  • List of books the character has/wants to read, with commentary (also movies)
  • A list of deceased childhood pets
  • A list of your character’s fears

Suggested reading

  • In the video I credited this story to Lydia Davis, but of course it is Jennifer Egan: To Do.
  • You can also look at McSweeney’s list articles, which are a little more snarky commentary than character stories.


This is a great refresher after a week of deep narrative work.

Go and have some fun!


6 thoughts on “Day 15 – The List”

  1. I had a busy day today, so my list was on the short side, but I loved writing this! Also really, *really* looking forward to thinking about more ways in which short stories aren’t like mini novels. Very cool!

  2. For my list I wrote out someone’s Kindle search history, from the time they were in high school until they became a grandparent, trying to show various life events by what types of books they were interested in at different stages of their life.

    Originally I was going to list out actual book titles that they’d bought, but it was taking a long time to get ones that I liked, and it was also leading to some pretty weird Google searches that I didn’t want to do in case the government is tracking me (just kidding! …sort of)

    One thing I’ll say is that, after reading it this morning, I spent all day thinking how easy this prompt was going to be and then it was harder than I thought. Hopefully I’ve learned my lesson. Very fun though, thank you for the prompt!

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