March 5th, 2008

Egyptian hieroglyphics

Coming up short?

I noticed an interesting flap on Galleycat about the "health of the short story." First there was a video by Story Prize judge Larry Dark where he describes the short story as a vibrant art form and says great stories are being written evener year. Apparently this sparked bitter e-mail responses that the market is moribund and no one can make a living as a short story writer anymore. Today's post points out a number of excellent short story writers who are selling stories, saying in effect, the short story is alive and well, although it also says it isn't just money that makes a writer "successful."

As someone who rarely reads short fiction (almost never mainstream short fiction) I don't feel qualified to state whether the short story has a pulse or not. My comment is that what makes stories "live" is not that writers can sell them but that people read them.