Short Story Day is September 21, 2016
Be sure to have your collection ready!
“Short stories consume you faster. They’re connected to brevity. With the short story, you are up against mortality. I know how tough they are as a form, but they’re also a total joy.” – Ali Smith
“All Hail the Short Story”
The dreaded carpool lane at the local elementary school. Halftime during the Saturday-morning kids’ soccer game. Waiting room anticipation at the doctor’s office—then waiting some more in the exam room. You know these well. These are the moments that compile the filler in life, and it’s going fast.
Fill Life’s Micro-Moments with Brief Tales
Life is now lived at breakneck speed. We need a breather. It’s time to relax and indulge in a personal act of pure escapism—by enjoying a short story. Why not fill in life’s micro-moments with brief tales of do-or-dare and make time’s dull intervals all the more richer. For us, the twenty-first-century literati, the short story is the ideal narrative form. In fact, in this hashtag world it is cool to be #ShortStoryHip!
You want to read? Don’t have the time. No worries. Pick up a collection of short story favorites.
Enrich Relatable Experiences with Short Stories
With a Smartphone, eBook, or paperback easily at hand, it is easy to read anywhere. Let us count real reading moments that fill the void of time otherwise wasted:
- Waiting on your cappuccino’s slow barista—taste the richness of fantasy.
- The bus is late again—time travel across the written page.
- Work is a chaotic hassle—escape into the realm of romance.
- The flight’s delayed yet another hour—far-off lands sit open in your hands.
- Terrified at the dentist—use that fear for tales of horror.
- Drudgery of the daily commute—spirit away on distant adventures.
- Alone at lunch break—enjoy the company of quirky characters.
- Dullness of the bathroom—well, it’s now considerably more interesting.
- After your lover leaves—relish the literary companionship of great affairs.
In these and other life-moments, the short story is an entertaining and thoughtful companion—a bite-sized dose of thrills, chills, passion, or humor.
Satisfaction of a Full Story (but with fewer words)
Despite fewer words, the journey into the imagination is complete, as is the satisfying story arc and memorable characters.
A spot kill from drug-pushers to detectives—how Hz hurts.
Michelle Medhat’s “Angel Heart” is both an investigative and a scientific thriller. Beginning with the death of Jem de Laine, daughter of a prominent scientist, Sir Patrick de Laine, due to an overdose of a new drug called Angel Heart the tale takes a sharp turn. Enter Sarah Steiner, DCI and intrepid investigator. Despite her probing into what drug killed Jem and where she might have gotten it Steiner is unable to close the case. What follows is a distraught parent trying to get justice for his daughter’s death. But the dealer who passed out the doctored drug that took Jem’s life had disappeared. It seems there will be no righteousness for poor Jem and her bereft father.
However time passes and events occur that bring the case back into Steiner’s headlights. Little by little she pieces together a complex puzzle that leads to an incredible conclusion. Medhat teases her characters into life, leaving no one behind as she weaves her tale of vengeance. Watching the case unfold I suspected where the story was going but there were surprises yet to be seen. This is a very satisfying detective story with fascinating science to spice things up. Sarah Steiner, DCI is a character I would love to follow in future stories.
The Scream of Silence
“Sticks and stones you may atone, but lies
come back to haunt you…”
Pamela Crane has created a poignant and deceitful tale in her short story “The Scream of Silence”. Developing her characters with artful skill she leads the reader along a path that tugs at the heart strings. Narrator Destiny Childs describes a life of an unmarried young woman who gives her baby daughter up for adoption as soon as she is born. What would normally be the end of the story is actually the beginning of Destiny’s journey of self discovery. Pitiable yet strong she is an oxymoron on two legs. On learning that the baby who was adopted by a wealthy couple has been murdered she sets her mind to discovering who committed the crime. Using the wiles a woman would pick up living a hard life on the streets she pokes and prods, putting clues together with the skill of a professional detective.
As Destiny questions those who knew the dead girl she also learns more about the daughter she relinquished years earlier. Her passion for justice is touching, especially when contrasted with her 15-year old self. She had erased the memory of the day her baby was born and moved through a life fraught with “Theft, prostitution, drugs, depression…”before finding her footing and turning her life around. It is this clean and sober Destiny who is slammed with the news of her daughter’s untimely death. And it is this Destiny who takes up the gauntlet and the challenge to get justice.
This is a well thought out story that carries the reader along, suspecting the outcome but eager to learn how it will be accomplished. Crane concludes with a rewarding end that had me close the book and nod appreciatively.