Talking About Short Stories
In one of my other lives, I write fiction.
My newest story has just appeared at Stoneâ€™s Throw, an online literary magazine. Yes, this is shameless self promotion. Iâ€™m hoping some of yâ€™all will find the time to read the issue — and maybe even read some other great literary journals as well. Youâ€™d be surprised how much literary short fiction is out there.
In fact, a recent New York Times editorial by A. O. Scott theorized that the short story might be ready for a rebound, after years and years of being considered all but dead.
The new, post-print literary media are certainly amenable to brevity. The blog post and the tweet may be ephemeral rather than lapidary, but the culture in which they thrive is fed by a craving for more narrative and a demand for pith. And just as the iPod has killed the album, so the Kindle might, in time, spur a revival of the short story. If you can buy a single song for a dollar, why wouldnâ€™t you spend that much on a handy, compact package of character, incident and linguistic invention? Why wouldnâ€™t you collect dozens, or hundreds, into a personal anthology, a playlist of humor, pathos, mystery and surprise?
This is, quite likely, wishful thinking. But Iâ€™d like to believe thereâ€™s still a niche for fiction of the truly fictional variety (rather than the yarns people claim as â€œtruthâ€ throughout the political blogosphere).
What do you think? Anyone here read short fiction? Poetry? Novels? Would you read more if they were more attainable?