A couple of weeks ago, I came across this ​microstory ​on Instagram. I couldn’t get it out of my mind and wished that I had saved it so I could share it with you. So, I went on an Internet hunt and found it!

Read the original on Tumblr

As the comment below says, this microstory takes you on a rollercoaster blockbuster ride. It is short but compelling, effective and memorable. What makes it so successful?

The Unusual Format

The good news/bad news style of this story pulls you back and forth between happiness and sympathy for the narrator, keeping you on the edge of your seat. You want to know what happens and hope that the narrator ends on good news.

Original Tone

The good news/bad news style of storytelling is original and funny. The tone continues with the Tragic Backstory capitalized with a trademark symbol, and a detailed list of why he is not cool.

Short and Sweet

While this story is only 121 words, it is filled with specific and clever details. It has a cute girl, tragic backstory, lock picking, unicycles, and a fawn. These details pack a punch!

All the Feels

These details are full of emotion. ​Emotion is the engine​ that drives your story. You want to put your characters through lots of emotion to make your audience feel lots of emotion. And we feel it here. He was almost a hero by unlocking the door, but he had showed his true self too many times before to be the cool guy. His emotions of wanting to get the girl, fit in, and be extraordinary are all things everyone feels. We are rooting for this guy even if he has fallen out of several trees.


A good story doesn’t wrap everything up in a bow. It leaves the reader with questions that linger long after the story has finished. These questions are what kept me thinking about this one for weeks after I read it. How has he fallen out of more than one tree? Why did he see a tiny fawn? What happened to it? What kind of workplace is this, anyway? And most importantly, does he ever go on that date with Maggie? Too bad this guy isn’t a novelist because I would buy his book.

Let this story inspire you!

1. When you’re working on ​your project cocktail pitches​. This is a great example of the emotion and intrigue you can accomplish with just a few words.

2. What crazy thing happened to you recently that you can turn into a story? Use it ​as an icebreaker​ instead of small talk when you meet someone new. Or as a scene in a new project.

3. Try writing something in the good news/bad news format.

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