This is my first time with a new blog hop, Celebrate the Small Things, and what could be smaller than a short story? Once there were so many short story magazines that many writers made a full time living at them. Then the magazines disappeared, and the few who were left didn’t raise their pay rates in decades.
Author and writing-coach Lawrence Block in 1979 wrote in ‘Writing the Novel: From Plot to Print’ that young writers ought not to bother writing even one short story. They should go straight to the novel.
I followed that advice with the result that I’ve written a large number of novel-beginnings with no endings. Not surprising. As a poet I mostly write short poems. I’ve even started writing haiku in the past couple of years. And so for many years the only thing I’ve published were poems and I felt like a failure.
Recently I was sick and a kindly doctor actually prescribed some hardcore pain pills for the accompanying pain. In the drug-fog I watched television reports of the race riots in Baltimore and I thought that the color of people’s skin was about as significant as the color of their shirts. There might as well be headlines: ‘Green-shirted Man Dies in Custody of Red-shirted Police Officers’.
Which in my drug-altered state led me to a weird idea of a city with people in all sorts of exotic skin colors, blue, violet, aqua, orange, red…. and the people change their skin color by means of skin shirts. I wrote the story and have now got with it to the point that I put it up as notes on my Facebook page, so a few friends of mine could read it and perhaps give me reactions before I do the final edits before e-book publication.
You are welcome to read it also (and more than welcome to ‘like’ my author page): https://www.facebook.com/notes/nissa-annakindt-poet-aspie-cat-person/the-skin-shirt-a-short-story-thats-not-about-race/449762488528479 As of this moment the first two parts of the story are up, and the third and final part will be published tomorrow. I also have a book cover— simple, but functional.
I’m wondering if perhaps the new publishing age we live in will create a renaissance for the short story. We can self-publish them as e-books, and even make them available for free (on Smashwords at least, Kindle insists on 99 cent minimum.) And writers of novels can write a short story in the same world as their novel, and make the story a ‘free sample’ for their full-length book.
Do you read short stories? Have you written one? How do you feel about short stories, as a reader or as a writer?
Find the other ‘Celebrate the Small Things’ blogs here: http://lexacain.blogspot.com/2015/01/celebrate-small-things.html
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Are you a writer, and do you feel your author blog could be better, or have more traffic? I feel the same way. And so I’ve started on a massive blog-improvement project which I am documenting in my blog post series Antimatter Blogs: How to Make your Blog Explode.
Each week (or so) I will post about something practical in relation to blog improvement. For example, next time I think I will cover how to use Twitter to get more blog readers.
‘Antimatter Blogs’ also has a linky list, which is at: http://linalamont2.blogspot.com/p/antimatter-blogs-linky-list.html It’s on a Blogger blog since WordPress.com is notoriously uncool about making these type of lists appear in posts. Once we get a few ‘Antimatter Bloggers’ on the list, it will be a great place to consult if you are looking for blogs to comment on.
To participate in the Antimatter Blogs blog improvement project:
- Follow this blog, using whatever method you use to follow blogs.
- Sign up on the linky list.
- Begin to follow the suggestions to help your blog improve and get more traffic.
- Suggestion One: Comment on other people’s blogs daily
- Hashtag #AntimatterBlogs