Monday, 23 April 2012

Short Circuit - The Art of the Short Story

On Saturday I was in a noodle bar in Brighton with my current Swenglish host, and we happened to bump into two very fine writers at the neighbouring table.

The writers were Vanessa Gebbie and Tania Hershman who have been very inspiring to me when it comes to the art of the short story.

There have been many debates over the last couple of years whether the short story is dead or whether it is having a revival. I won't go into the debate, but I definitely think that short stories have a place in our society and culture.

What I love is to dip in and out of story collections, being able to finish something in one sitting that I can carry with me for the rest of the day, or week or month or year if I find something really good. Even a story short as a paragraph can be entertaining and open your mind to new ideas.

The best book I've ever come across about short story writing is Short Circuit - A Guide to the Art of the short Story which is full of essays and useful tips from some of the best story writers in the UK and beyond.

I'm not getting much time for fiction writing as I'm in the middle of my Swenglish project, but now and again I get a flash of inspiration and jot an idea down. At the moment 500 word-stories are working really well for me.

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