Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Short Story Initiative (Getting to Know You Post)

Nancy Cudis, at Simple Clockwork, had been hosting Short Stories on Wednesdays (which she had taken over from Risa at Breadcrumb Reads). Now Short Stories on Wednesdays has morphed into the Short Story Initiative. At the end of every month Nancy will put up a post where bloggers can add links to their own posts on short stories from the past month; she even has suggestions for monthly short story themes, but those are optional, and to participate you can write about any short stories.

To start off the Short Story Initiative Nancy has suggested a getting to know each other post with the following questions:

1. Why do you want to join The Short Story Initiative?
I love reading short stories, and I'd like to connect with other bloggers who have a similar interest.

2. What kind of short stories do you read? Is there a specific genre or culture or nationality you would like to explore through short stories?
Looking through the growing list of short fiction recommendations (at the Reading Lists tab above) I wasn't able to find a type of short story I've liked best. It just has to be a good story and memorable in some way (I haven't yet come across a story with zombies that I like, so maybe 'zombie fiction' is out for me). I read a variety of styles and genres, and I'm branching out to different nationalities and cultures as well. One of my goals is to read as many of the Oxford series of short story anthologies as possible, when they're available at the local library; they offer collections of short stories from cultures around the world (e.g. The Oxford Book of Australian Ghost Stories).

3. Who is your favorite short story writer? Why?
I don't have a single favorite author. Most of the anthologies I read present a mix of different authors, either from a certain culture or writing about a certain theme (e.g. love, crime, cats).

4. What is the most memorable short story you have read?
Tough one... Edgar Allan Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado" for the dementedness of the narrator, Isak Dinesen's "The Immortal Story," Graham Greene's "The Destructors," Alejo Carpentier's "Journey Back to the Source," Mary E. Wilkins Freeman's stories (surprisingly so, because they aren't full of magnificent dramatic events, but they linger in the mind for a long time after).

5. What is your experience with short stories in the past? Is it a good or bad experience?
I don't remember having bad experiences with short fiction. I used to read short stories in high school and liked them well enough, but then hardly read them at all for close to ten years. But last year I dove into them again. I don't remember what suddenly rekindled my interest.

6. Share one book confession when it comes to short stories?
It's harder for me to read short stories online because I get fidgety reading multi-paged works off of a computer screen. I prefer reading out of a book (I haven't tried e-readers yet). Not much of a confession, but there you go.

7. Share something about yourself that has nothing to do with short stories.
I'm mildly addicted to Khan Academy videos.