I was inspired to start writing a string quartet, because I love the the expressive possibility of the 4 instruments; violins, viola, and cello. Along with the possibilities for harmonization. I was inspired by Shostakovich's String Quartet no.8, particularly the 2nd mvmt, with its dissonance, and rapid changes in style from frantic pizzicato, to low, and slow overlapping harmonies. I was also inspired by Richard Strauss's Metamorphosen for 23 strings, which deviates from traditional Western harmonic progressions, through its continual evolution of sound, and uses a beautiful and expressive polyphony, that still harmonizes.
In the submitted composition, there are a series of 3 ideas I have developed, where I employ chromaticism, dissonance, and those strong, mutating harmonies as inspired by Strauss. Initially, I was under the impression that a piano would accompany the quartet, but I decided that the string quartet would be my preferred format, so you'll notice a short piano, introduction at the beginning.
I'm looking for help with structuring a larger work, as well as, advice as to the length, and telling a story through my music. As well as, technical aspects like writing counterpoint, harmonization, etc.