Short Story Collection Abstract

I will be doing a creative writing research project that will culminate in a portfolio of three fictional short stories. The stories will be inspired in part by experiences by the cultural differences I notice during a two week trip to Ireland, as well as ideas of struggle, home, and growth inspired by my aunt, who I will be traveling with. I hope to answer two larger questions in these pieces. First of all, I would like to build off of what I learned during my Freshman Monroe Project, in which I wrote a piece that was over 30,000 words long. While completing that project I developed the patience and planning skills necessary to write a longer piece. This year I want to answer the question: what are the best ways to cut a narrative down to the bare essentials, and make my story more powerful? My second question builds off the first: how can a writer create believable, complex characters in such a small narrative?