Novels turned short stories

“Lots of short stories are actually the first chapters of novels.” —Pat Barker A nice observation on short stories by a contemporary British novelist. It says something about the lure of short stories, that readers are often left wanting more. Even a short story leaves readers invested in their characters, and sometimes wanting to follow…

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Alice Munro on small town stories

“The writers of the American South were the first writers who really moved me because they showed me that you could write about small towns, rural people, and that kind of life I knew very well.” Alice Munro I like this quote from short story writer Alice Munro. And if anyone knows how to tell…

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Book Review: Queen Idia’s Africa – short stories

I enjoyed this collection of  short stories. These connected stories all imagine a contemporary society in which Africa has developed as a wealthy continent, and is working to finance the development efforts in the lesser developed regions of Western Europe and America. This overseas development aid is largely intended to stop the flow of desperate…

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Happy National Short Story Week 2016!

It’s that time of year again, National Short Story Week 2016 – running 14-20 November! Short story readers and writers like me always appreciate efforts to concentrate much-needed attention on the short story. That’s one of the reasons I always look forward to this week. And I often tend to set aside short story collections…

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Book Review: Fall of Poppies

This series of short stories set during World War I, Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War was bound to be right up my alley. I love short stories and I love historical fiction, and I have a particular weakness for stories set during this time period, an era of marked upheaval as…

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Coca Cola, chocolate bar … and a short story?

Viva la France! If we hadn’t reach that conclusion alone in these weeks after the events of Paris last month, we would have arrived there by the admirable appreciation of culture and literature in that country. France – and specifically the pretty, southeastern mountain city of Grenoble – is the first city ever to offer…

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Last chance to submit for the Writers Abroad anthology

I’ve already posted about the call for submissions for expat writers or former expat writers. The Writers Abroad anthology, Kaleidoscope, is accepting works of short fiction, flash fiction and poetry. But the deadline is looming for submissions. You have until Monday, 15 June to submit your work. So writers, get polishing work you’ve already done, or…

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London’s calling … all lovers of short stories

There are many reasons to visit the cosmopolitan city of London. But for lovers of short stories, 18-21 June 2015  is an ideal time to make it there, since these are the dates for the London Short Story Festival. There will be lots of the big names in short stories attending, speaking about their craft…

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