I have short stories inside me again. They boil and bubble over at the most inconvenient of times, when it is impossible for me to write them down. The flame burns itself out whenever I finally put pen to paper, so that all I accomplish is to jot down a quick summary of the ideas, so it is all captured at least and will continue to simmer. I can only hope that the story boils again the next time I sit down to write.
The spark for this long-lost flame has been my copy of Dzanc Books' Best of the Web 2010. While looking for some fresh reading material without taking a trip to the bookstore this weekend, I found it sitting on my shelf, brand new, corners unbent, spine uncreased. This monster of a volume scolded me for buying it months ago, only to almost immediately forget its existence. Shamed, I shoved it in my bag and declared it my day's reading. Within its pages, I discovered short gems of contemporary literary fiction. Writers I've heard of in magazines I've been rejected by. Writers I've never heard of in literary journals with unfamiliar names. Some spoke to me, others were forgettable. Some I could even finish, others I devoured. But through reading them, I was reminded of a fact that I should be painfully aware of, but choose to ignore for the most part: I don't read nearly enough short stories. For someone who wants to write (and does) literary short stories, my reading tastes tend to run in the opposite direction.
So in an effort to rectify this and to celebrate my rekindled spark, I am declaring August "Short Story Month" here in Happy Writing Land! What this means for me is threefold:
So to recap that means I will be reading a minimum of 62 stories, writing 31 new blog posts, and writing approximately 15,500 words dedicated exclusively to short stories. Aside from this new project, I do intend to continue editing my novel, so don't think I am going to use the month of August for slacking off in that department.
Now, I don't want to keep all the fun to myself, so I plan to do at least 3 giveaways throughout the month -- maybe more! So stick around and join me on my short story journey!
Happy Short Story Month!
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