I have a bad habit, sometimes, of generalising about what “writers” are like, mostly based only on my own experience. Last night I got a good reminder that there are many different kinds of writer. I was performing at an event called “Stand up for Books“, organised by the Society of Authors and the Society [...]
Tag Archives | short stories
I was excited to meet Courttia Newland at Bim Literary Festival here in Barbados earlier this year. He’s a British writer, but was here because his mother is Barbadian. I’d read his debut novel The Scholar when it first came out, which I now realise is a long time ago (like, last millennium). Had always [...]
Quick question for you. I’m thinking of making some of my short stories available for download from this site, but am not sure how much to charge for them. So I’ve set up a quick poll, below. I’d really appreciate your vote (oh dear, I sound like a politician). Seriously, though, it would help, and [...]
I found Maybe This Time a very unsettling collection of short stories. I mean that in a good way. Being unsettled is often the prelude to thinking about things in a new way, and to me that’s one of the most important functions of literature. The stories are very varied in style and content, but [...]
This was a very interesting collection of short stories from around Europe. There’s one piece from each country, so it really felt like a broad and varied collection rather than being weighted toward particular countries. One thing I didn’t like is that some of them were extracts from longer pieces, which I don’t think works [...]
A short book of four short stories. I liked the main one, Bon Voyage Mr President. It’s quite a straightforward story, with none of the magical realism for which Marquez is known. The dying ex-president of a Caribbean nation is in Geneva, seeing doctors about a mysterious ailment. A man from his home nation recognises [...]
The final part in my journey through Russian literature. For the original post in the series, please click here. Varlam Shalamov Here we move into the Stalinist era and writing about the Gulag. Through the Snow is a beautiful extended metaphor about writing as walking through virgin snow, with readers coming along behind on tractors [...]
For the original post in this series, click here. Isaak Babel These three stories come from Babel’s posting as the equivalent of an embedded war correspondent with a Cossack regiment in Poland in 1920. They are not compromised or sanitised in any way, however: the convey the full savagery and horror not only of war [...]
For the original post in this series, click here. The Gentleman from San Francisco and In Paris by Ivan Bunin Two stories about abrupt deaths, both beautifully written, both very different. The Gentleman from San Francisco is about the transitory nature of existence. A bit like Dostoevsky’s Bobok, it shows how a lot of the [...]
Continuing my journey through Russian literature: if you want to see the introduction and reviews of earlier stories, click here. Bobok by Fyodor Dostoevsky Not my favourite Dostoevsky, this one. It’s quite a funny little story about a man who goes to a graveyard and hears the dead people talking to each other in their [...]
- The 20 best Caribbean book blogs 1 October 2012
- Liebster Award reloaded 1 November 2012
- The cafe killer 29 October 2012
- The Kindle Report: does it beat paper? 4 December 2012
- The next big thing… 4 January 2013
- We could take a train, be miles away by morning… 6 May 2013
- Ten years ago: Voluntary poverty in New York City 30 April 2013
- Some interviews 22 April 2013
- Giveaway: Granta Best of Young British Novelists 2003 18 April 2013
- How to Improve your Foreign Language Immediately 15 April 2013
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