shining the spotlight on short story collections
Issue 8 June 2008 of The Short Review is now up – lots of ideas for summer reading if you’re in the northern hemisphere and books to keep you warm in the winter months if you’re down south.
This month’s issue is brought to you by the numbers 3, 13 and 18. There are phantasms, bodies, apologies and meetings, a bumper seven author interviews, some lies, some truths, some very tiny gems, a little fantasy and a lot of great writing.
You Have Time for This
a celebration of the richness that can be packed into the brevity of five hundred words or less…
ed Mark Budman
Ryan Seacrest is Famous
A successful blend of pop culture and lad lit…..
by Dave Housley
Balancing on the Edge of the World
A temperament both in control and struggling with private rage, corrosive humour, then a gentle, dry empathy….
by Elizabeth Baines
The Dream Lover
He describes the miserable burdens of humanity, but his approach is humorous, not grim – a bit like Graham Greene with jokes…
by William Boyd
How They Met
Teens fall in and out of love and lust while navigating the minefields of school, parental expectation and sexuality
by David Levithan
13 Phantasms & Other Stories
A smorgasbord of Blaylock’s best short fiction
by James P. Blaylock
Apologies Forthcoming A sensual immersion in the Chinese Cultural Revolution, with stories that expose the everyday hardships of citizens…
by Xujun Eberlein
Bodies in Motion
The first collection I read for which the label novel-in-stories felt appropriate.
by Mary Anne Mohanraj
18 Lies and 3 Truths: 2007 StoryQuarterly Annual
An assortment of stories, some of which sparkled more than others, especially those from newer writers whose trajectories are surely on the rise.
ed by Tom Jenks, Carol Edgarian, MMM Hayes
The Cusp of Something
An original and often beautifully written collection, which challenges and occasionally frustrates readers with its lyrical prose and complex characters.
by Jai Clare
“I very consciously organized the order of the stories, with the one page fictions teaching the reader that Black Tickets was an unusual book”
“I chose what I consider my best stories – and those with some kind of thematic development.”
“I constantly worry about boring the reader. I think this psychology helps me developing a more captivating plot and pace”
“When writing Bodies in Motion, my advisor, looking at an early draft, said that I seemed to be writing for white people, because I was doing a lot of explaining of Sri Lankan culture.That really startled me,…”
“It honestly blows my mind to imagine what my junior-year-of-high-school self would have thought had someone told him the story he was writing would be published twenty years later in a collection by Knopf… and that it would be his eighth book”
“Jennifer [the publisher] also strongly encouraged me to make the story Bare the first story, so the first four words of my collection are ‘I shaved my balls…’.”
“It was interesting to see the different ways in which my stories “talked” to each other according to the order in which I placed the rest of them – creating different rhythms of mood or style or situation..”