Just like a lot of things in this world, stories come in all sizes. When I was younger, nothing short of a novel length tale really got my juices flowing. Whether it was because I had more time for such an investment or perhaps my imagination needed more time and complexity to take flight, I suppose I’ll never know.

Once I started writing, I became drawn to more succinct pieces. A whole serial came out of my imagination before I even realized how short each segment turned out. Now I enjoy reading short story collections more and more, too. It’s as if I find more of a powerful punch in brevity.

The trick with authoring such material is finding a publisher. I understand that the endeavor, while not impossible, can be especially tough depending on the genre. That said, a very encouraging mentor suggested I write my own short story anthology. The challenge is intriguing. Selling a collection as a fledgling artist might be a real trial in its own right, but the reward of writing cannot be discounted. I hope you’ll wish me luck.

What about you? Whether as a reader or a writer, do you have a preference about the length of story you would rather read?

2 thoughts on “Size Matters

  1. I suppose for me, it's about writing first and business second. I never have much luck if I worry about where I'll sell something: even things that start out as good ideas become heavy weights and I stall. (Conservator is like that, as are Faerrie Story and Ripples).

    As for anthologies of short stories, I think one should write them if they see them. Then, one could pitch individual ones to magazines, and anthologize later; find a house for the anthology in todo; or some third option like self-publishing or blogs.

    As for my preferred length as a reader, it depends on the story and the author. I'm a voracious reader, so I love series, but there are short story collections I love as well – two by Ursula LeGuin are my favorites, as are several from Ray Bradbury and one from Isaac Asimov.

  2. What a thoughtful and fabulous commentary! You mention not only useful advice but great authors. Thanks for this!

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