A Story for our Time: Short

I really love short stories. I like the way they move, their conciseness, their ability to tell me something I need to know in around 20 pages. When I want just a glimpse into someone’s day, I go to Carver. When I want a short story that reads like a novel, there’s none better than Alice Munroe. (How does she get all those people, events and histories into so few pages?) I like to read a whole collection by a single author. Or come upon a new author in an anthology or magazine—it’s like speed dating: Small investment of time may net lasting relationship.
It surprises me that today, when we want everything fast and now, more of us don’t read and appreciate short stories. Here are a few of the reasons why I do:
“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” – Hemingway
“Dusk” – Salter
“All Shook Up” – Boyle
“A Day in the Country” – Chekov
“The Dead” – Joyce
“The Lovely Troubled Daughters of Our Old Crowd” – Updike
“The Year of Silence” – Brockmeier
“The Progress of Love” – Munroe
“Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?” – Carver
“A Lesson in Traveling Light” – Eisenburg
“The King of Sentences” – Lethem

What are your old and new favorites?

—Chris

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