“How many times have people used a pen or paintbrush because they couldn’t pull the trigger?”—Virginia Woolf, from Selected Essays
“a very strange but emtional short story about for one another. this novella may not appeal to everyone due to it’s unorthodox sexual content but if you can look past that the story may be worth the read.”
From a How to Shake the Other Man Goodreads review. In addition to the novella’s brilliance, it also has a special knack for identifying homophobia.
“The most solid advice for a writer is this, I think: Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell. And when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”—William Saroyen
Jules Archer for #shortstorymonth
To celebrate Short Story Month, we’ve asked some awesome writers, editors, and other literary types to weigh in on their favourite stories and collections, and what makes a piece of short lit great. Today, writer Jules Archer.
What makes a short story great?
For me, a great short story has an instant hook. Whether it’s a character, a sentence, or a plot, something always hooks and draws me in. Usually, if the first sentence makes me keep reading, I know I have a keeper. From there, I just want a well-told story. Killer language. Sparsity. Twisted tales. Humor. Nothing normal is always good. I admire the short story form for getting so much into a cramped space. If you can do it right and freakishly, you have my attention.
I really am in love with The Paper Bag Princess by Rebecca Jones-Howe at Manarchy.