short stories

The Things They Carried: More than War Fiction


If you haven’t read at least the title story of The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien, something’s not right. This incredible book of stories resurrects cultural emotions I’ve never fully understood. It’s about Vietnam and soldiers, life, and all that. But [...]

Cathedral: Carver Cuts Up Birdman


Ever since Birdman, Raymond Carver has once again emerged as a “hip” short story writer. Those of us who have studied writing or English, though, will recognize many of his stories because he is just that prominent. Cathedral (the collection) is what I picked up a few weeks ago. While [...]

Rock Springs: Gritty Realities by Richard Ford


I’d put Richard Ford’s Rock Springs in a need-to-read list for every serious writer of literary fiction.  The stories in this collection are visceral, hard-boiled, and wash over the reader like they happened in a memory. I’d put them in the same field as Carver and Denis Johnson, [...]

Winter Roundup | To Read & Review


I’ve spent a good deal of time reading these past few months. Often, it’s the only thing too do when it’s super snowy (as some of you may understand). Now that I’ve got a good stack of recently read and to-be-read books going, I decided to write up little reviews/blurbs [...]

99 Cent Short Stories | Small Gains for Short Fiction?


This ArtsBeat article deserves attention. In short (the theme of the piece), a small publisher is releasing digital short stories in honor of May’s Short Story Month. The catch is that they are selling them for 99 cents each and a new piece is released every day. It’s an interesting [...]

TL;DR & Short, Short Fiction


Too long; didn’t read — a common enough expression on forums and, occasionally, social media. While I’ve always been familiar with the term TL;DR, never have I ever (nor will I ever, hopefully) see it written on the bottom of a short story by a reader in a workshop setting. [...]

The Enigma Writer vs. Niche Author


My post on learning poetry for prose writers got me thinking: What kind of writer am I? Do I spend hours a day on my book because that’s what I see myself doing in the future, or do I avoid short stories, poetry, screenplays, and other mediums because I’m out of practice? I think [...]

Are We Too “Young” To Write Books?


I was talking with a friend in an MFA program the other day about the challenges of novel writing. We traded manuscripts a few months back and, at the conclusion of our dialogue, he said, “We’re too young to be writing books.” I couldn’t disagree more. Upon pressing the [...]

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