Frequent listeners may remember a conversation on the show with one of our regular guests, Georgia Richter from Freemantle Press a few weeks back. We were talking about what was coming up this year and the subject got on to the wonderful, concise sister of the novel – the short story. It’s a difficult form to get right but when done right a good short story can stay with you for days.
A few years ago, author Stephen King wrote an a mourning piece in the New York Times where he mourned the fate of the short story- relegated to the dusty, bottom shelf; self-consciously written aware of the dwindling audience. The result, he wrote were pieces “not quite dead on the page, I won’t go that far, but airless, somehow, and self-referring. These stories felt show-offy rather than entertaining, self-important rather than interesting, guarded and self-conscious rather than gloriously open, and worst of all, written for editors and teachers rather than for readers.”
They needed to be liberated from the bottom shelf, he concluded.
Richter – a writer and fan of the medium – predicted a short story come back this year and it seems she might have been on the money. Tonight on the show we speak with Leah Swann about her new collection Bearings published in Affirm Press’ series Long Short Stories.
Also on the show: Nija Dalal's review of Bowl of Cherries, by Millard Kauffman.
Leah Swann, Bearings, Affirm Press - interviewed by Jeanavive McGregor
Millard Kauffman, Bowl of Cherries, published by McSweeney’s - produced by Nija Dalal