Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Short stories help

There are so many things to write about. Thank you, first, for all your lovely comments on my post about Cleo, and for your wonderful emails too. It gets a little easier each day. And short stories help me, as they always do. I just read The River Nemunas from Anthony Doerr's astonishingly wonderful collection, Memory Wall. I didn't know the story would be about death and grief, and it tackles these so lightly yet so powerfully, and it felt absolutely true, absolutely right to me, now, even though it is about a 15-year-old American orphan living in Lithuania with her grandfather. That is the power of fiction, isn't it?

I am busy preparing for ShortStoryVille on Saturday, for the session I am chairing on reading short stories. Is there anything you would like me to ask our three panel members, Scott Pack, David Hebblethwaite and Clare Hey, all of whom are readers but not short story writers? I have quite a list of questions myself, but more are welcome, leave a comment here. A whole day of short stories is definitely keeping me going right now, I love nothing more than talking about them and spending time with other people who love nothing more than talking about them. I'm also reading later, together with some other wonderful local authors, and haven't decided yet what to read. I will leave that til the last minute. Something older, something new, perhaps something with a cat in it, but then there's the risk I will blubber, so perhaps not.

I will write about my time at Hawthornden soon, but here are a few pics as tasters until then:


Vanessa Gebbie said...

What lovely pics. I assume your illustrious name will go on the door of Bronte too, soon?!

Question, although I expect a zillion others will be asking the same thing - ..."Do the panel approach reading a short story in the same way as they would a longer piece of fiction? If not, what is the difference in their reading process?"

Tania Hershman said...

Thanks, V - that's a good one. If we don't get to it, you could ask that yourself!

Tim Love said...

Charles May's recent post might be a good source of questions - about the popularity of short stories; about facts, science and short stories, etc.