Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Short Story Love

My well loved short story collections. 
In honor of the start of Camp NaNoWrimo and my endeavor to write a short story anthology, I thought I’d point you toward some short stories available online that have left a mark on me as a reader/writer.

As an English graduate, short stories were my bread and butter during my academic days. In some ways, I learned to love short stories more than I do novels. All texts, whether 1,000 words or 100,000 words, require a level of bravery and talent to leave any kind of mark on the world, but I think a short story has a lot of work to do in a very limited space that gives them a certain appeal unobtainable by longer novels.

If a short story can elicit some kind of visceral emotion from me within their short pages, I hold them to a different level than I would a novel that did the same. There is no room for background, slow building, or space to grow a strong bond between reader and text in a short story. It’s all action, and if done right, powerful, lasting action.

—That’s not to say I don’t love full-length novels. I’m a reader of all—

I’ve fallen in love with many short tales, but these are my favorites:

            If you read any on this list, let it be this one. It has Christian undertones, some might say overtones, like most of Tolkien’s work, but it’s also simply a story about people, about appreciating your neighbor and looking at the world through their eyes. It’s also about an artist, a pastor, death, and a leaf.

This one had me in a moral quandary. If you’re a lover of Utopian/Distopian stories, give this short one a read and decide what you would do. It’s about a perfect society, what is responsible for that perfection, and what one would do in the face of that thing which makes it perfect. I’m writing in circles, just give it a read.

            Another moral quandary story. This is about a town that holds a lottery once a year as a ritual to bring prosperity to the town. I won’t tell anymore, but it’s definitely worth a read.

            This is about a sick woman who is locked away in a house in the country at the advise of her husband to help her get better. Strange things happen in her isolation and the ending is just creepy perfection. Read it.

Honorable Mentions:


  1. I'm aspiring to be able to publish a book of short stories myself, so I do try to seek out other writers' works and learn from them. My personal favorite short story is by Edgar Allen Poe, though I find most people haven't read it. It's called The Narrative of Gordon Pym, and it's one of Poe's longer works, but I love it all the same.

    1. I've never read that one, but I think it might be considered his only novel. Poe was my first favorite author. I love most everything I've read by him.

      I love meeting fellow short story writers. I don't find too many. Thanks for reading!!

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