Here’s my reading list for the Short Works Reading Group. The reading challenge and invitation to other writers and readers who want to embrace and celebrate short works like short stories, essays, creative nonfiction, as well as collections and anthologies. My short works master reading plan is below.
The Short Works Reading Group (#shortworksgroup) is to inspire and motive those writers and readers who, like me, love to read and discuss short stories, essays, and even short novels or novellas. Both fiction and non-fiction reading is encouraged. I’ve loved short works ever since, as a child, I read Edgar Allan Poe’s short story The Tell-Tale Heart and believe the short forms have a lot to offer.
This is a modest, long term reading challenge open to anyone at anytime. A minimum of ten works over five years is requested to join in. Visit the sign-up page for all the Short Works group reading challenge information and guidelines.
My Short Works Reading Group reading list
Here’s my living list of short works. Every year I devour the Best American Series. My favorites collections are the Best American Short Stories, Best American Essays, Best American Science and Nature Writing, Best American Travel Writing, and Best American Mystery Stories. The “Best American” annual anthologies have the best of the published short works for that year. In addition, I’ve added the following titles. I assume I’ll be adding more as I go along — and yes, it is more than ten works.
- Finish date: December 31, 2018
- Most looking forward to read: Flannery O’Connor: Collected Works
Most reluctant to attempt: Selected Stories by Andre Dubus (1988)
- Currently reading: Wharton’s New England by Edith Wharton (1951)
- Last read: The Daemon and the Lottery by Shirley Jackson (1943, audio) – Finished 10/18/14; Review to come
Collections (Short Stories)
- The Best Short Stories of O. Henry by O. Henry (William Sydney Porter) (1896 – 1909)
- The Christmas Novels by Charles Dickens (1843 – 1848)
- The Best Short Stories by Guy de Maupassant (1881 – 1891)
- The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer (14th century) RR
- The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty (1909 – 2004)
- Runaway (short story collection) by Alice Munro
- Selected Stories by Andre Dubus (1988)
- Flannery O’Connor: Collected Works by Flannery O’Connor (1946 – 1964)
- Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King (2010) — Finished 2013; review to come
- A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories by Flannery O’Conner (1955)
- She Loves Me Not: New and Selected Stories by Ron Hansen – Reading now
- Wharton’s New England: Seven Stories and Ethan Fromme by Edith Wharton (1995 collection) — Reading now
- The Troll Garden and Other Selected Stories by Willa Cather
Collections – Poetry, essays & anthologies
- Basho: The Complete Haiku by Matsuo Basho (1662 – 1694)
- Metamorphoses by Ovid 8th century RR
- Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman (1860) RR
- Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov (1951) – Reading now
- Willa Cather On Writing by Willa Cather (1949)
- Aristotle: Poetics by Aristotle (RR) (335 BC) RR
- Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury (1990) RR
- Mystery and Manners: Occasional Prose by Flannery O’Connor (1970)
- The Art of the Personal Essay by Phillip Lopate (1997) RR
- Tolstoy and the Purple Chair by Nina Sankovitch (2012) — Finished 2012; review to come.
Short Works – Fiction
- The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemmingway (1952)
- Xingu by Edith Wharton (1916) – Finished 01/10/13; RR 10/18/14; review to come.
- The Man Without a Country by Edward Everett Hale (1863) – Finished 10/12/13; review to come.
- The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe – Finished 10/12/13; RR 10/18/24; review to come
Short Works – Non Fiction
- Survival Lessons by Alice Hoffman (2013) – Finished 10/12/13; review to come
- How to Achieve Your Goals and Dreams (Short Subjects With Big Impact) by James Scott Bell – Finished 09/24/13; review to come
- How to Manage the Time of Your Life (Short Subjects With Big Impact) by James Scott Bell – Finished 09/24/13; review to come
- Drawing on the Power of Resonance in Writing by Dave Farland – Finished 09/25/13 – review to come
- Million Dollar Outlines by Dave Farland – Finished 09/26/13; review to come
My Short Works challenge to YOU
Why not join The Short Works Reading Group and create your own short works reading plan? So, what do you think about my choices and the short form? Comment below. I’d love to hear from you.
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