Sunday Slush: July 15 2017 Submission Notes

Been seeing this ending a lot in recent submissions for flash:

“xxx,” (s)he said.
Then voice is described.

For example:

“I love you,” she said.
Her voice was tiny, like a trinket.

Why it might be okay to end that way?

Well, it is trying for something good, wethinks. Things like subtext, metaphor, that expansion of meaning. And it sure sounds like an ending, doesn’t it?

Why the journal might not love this kind of ending?

Sometimes flash uses language to hide the fact that not much is happening by pairing charged, urgent imagery with an undramatic, not-very-significant action. Here, that snippet of dialogue that doesn’t resolve anything or contain any new insight is linked to figurative language that makes it sound “literary” and thus of some significance. The concern here is that it doesn’t achieve that, and thus it reads as a “phony” ending, pretending something that it cannot deliver.