Short Stories

Mystery and Reversal: The Art of a Story’s Middle

I’m thinking today particularly about those of us who write short stories. I know from my own experience, as well as from that of my students, that we often begin a story with a good deal of enthusiasm only to find it faltering in the middle. We spend so much time talking and thinking about the beginnings and endings of stories that we neglect strategies for what to do between the two. This is a post, then, about what to do in the middle of a short story. We first have to think about what the middles of our stories [...]

By | 2017-12-04T08:01:27+00:00 December 4th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Compression and Expansion in the Short Story

I heard Hilma Wolitzer say once that writing a novel was easy; you just brought in all the family. Her point was that the form of the novel invites a larger world than that of the short story. The novel makes room for a large cast of characters and events as well as a broad stretch of time. This isn’t to say that the novel always expands, nor is this to say that the short story always restricts. I do, believe, though, that the short story often depends on compression for its power. And yet, the short story must be [...]

By | 2017-08-28T07:31:15+00:00 August 28th, 2017|Blog|0 Comments