Sample Fiction Format
Lee Ann Mortensen
Word Count: 1500
Stories of course use paragraphs with a tab in front of each paragraph (unless you are being
somehow experimental, then all rules are off). Stories are usually also double spaced, and have
pagination on each page with a header which as you will notice above is my last name. With my novel,
I use one word from the title as my header. Some magazines say this is the kind of header they want,
so pay attention to their submission guidelines. You should submit your work to me in this format.
This would be my second paragraph. Notice that I will tab at the begining of each paragraph to
signal a new begining. Some new authors wonder how to decide on paragraph breaks in fiction.
Like poetry, I think paragraph breaks depend on the rhythms you want to convey, and the pauses. Tabs,
or paragraph breaks, imply a shift in tone, or a shift in point of view, but not all authors use them for
this reason. You have to read it out loud and see where you think you would like a break.