Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Perfection of a Short Story

This weekend I had the opportunity to read some of my favorite short stories out loud to my husband. He wanted to understand my passion for writing and the most obvious way for me to explain it to him was to show him, firsthand, some of the stories that have moved me most deeply. 

I've never had the opportunity to read these stories out loud. With the exception of all the picture books and chapter books that I've read out loud to my kids at bedtime, all of my reading has been a very solitary experience, so it was a thrill to be able to not only relive some of my favorite words, but to speak them, to slow down and savor them.

There are dozens and dozens of short stories that have really resonated with me over the years, but there are a few that I come back to over and over again:

A Good Man is Hard to Find by Flannery O'Connor 
White Angel by Michael Cunningham 
Bullet in the Brain by Tobias Wolff
The Fourth State of Matter by Jo Ann Beard (really an essay)

Are there any short stories that you revisit time and again?


  1. Short stories have never been my love. Interesting when I teach English and have touched on many throughout my years. I love getting to know characters, their settings, and their conflicts too much, I think. Short stories don't allow me 'in' enough.

  2. I'm looking foward to doing this when my kids get a bit older. How fun!

    Have a great Monday, Kate. ☺

  3. I was about to write our my favourite short stories when I realized - I already collected them all together in a post here:

    Special attention to Martel's one - The Facts Behind the Roccomatios. Great read.