Short works have many benefits for writers and readers
Now’s the time to explore short works in both fiction and nonfiction with a new reading challenge called Short Works Reading Group (#shortworks2). I’ve skipped across the blogosphere and haven’t tripped over any challenges focused on short works like short stories and essays, so I’ve decided to start one. Join me.
The wonderful world of short fiction
Short works like short stories and novellas are great fun to read and pathways to finding new authors. Some writers like Chekov, Raymond Carver, and my beloved Edgar A. Poe are well-known for their short works in fiction; however, other great short stories like Edith Wharton’s Xingu are simply long-forgotten gems overshadowed by the author’s longer and more famous works.
Delving into the deep with short nonfiction
Essays are equally enjoyable to read and there are many great nonfiction collections to select for a great quick read or an afternoon of mental entertainment. In today’s world many nonfiction essays and short forms of creative writing are found online. The digital revolution is making it easier to download short works and even easier for writers to publish.
There are many reasons why a writer or an avid book lover might want to give increased attention to short works.
Short works work for today’s readers
With the press of whirlwind lives and information overload, you would think today’s readers would find short works ideal. Instead, some people have even given up reading. They don’t have time to read. I say, try short works.
Short stories and novellas can be just as interesting, intriguing, suspenseful and delightful as anything else on the market. The nonfiction essays and creative nonfiction anthologies and collections contain great work done by gifted writers.
Writers should add short works to their reading lists
If a writer wants to get a handle on a new genre or find new and often emerging writers, reading short works like short stories, short story collections, essays and anthologies is a great path to follow. You can deconstruct a short story in far less time and get a real feel for the inner workings of the material.
Take up The Short Works Reading Group challenge
Short works don’t seem to capture the attention of many writers and readers these days. That’s why I’ve created The Short Works Reading Group project. The minimum requirements are quite modest. I’m hoping other readers and writers who favor the short form will join me and commit to reading, discovering, and sharing short works.
Ready to go short? Go here to learn all the short works reading group information with how-tos and whys.
If you’re a writer and you’re still wondering whether you want to bother reading short stories, see my reasons why reading short stories benefit writers. If you’re wondering why writers should bother reading the classics, here’s my take on the lengthy ongoing conversation among writers.
More reasons to join the short works group
This is a great reading group for anyone who has trouble carving out time to read. Maybe you’ve gotten out of the habit of reading. Short works are a great way to get back into that reading groove. Perhaps you’ve never been much of a reader. Why not start now? Short works are a perfect pathway into reading.
So what do you think about short stories and essays? Do you read them? Maybe you write them. You know my favorite short story: The Tell-Tale Heart. What’s yours? Be sure and comment below and tell me what you think — and read more about the new reading challenge.
Hashtag #shortworks2 | My short works reading plan