I'm talking about the Short Story, Barflys. I have two fingers of Macallans at my side as I ponder this quandry (It's been bothering the hell out of me for sometime) and I thought Crimespace would be an excellent place to pose this question. I find, if I leave this realm of Murder and Mayhem, that the Short Story holds little respect in other forms of literature. People seem to treat it like the red-headed step-child of fiction. This upsets me. Most of the stories I remember with passion and amazement from my 20's and before, are short stories written by the greatest names in literature. And most of them scared the crap out of me, too! Name any great writer from the 1930's on back and everyone of them practiced, and many excelled, at writing a Short. It was rarely either/or, they were practiced in tandem. Since WWII, though, it's been snubbed and ridiculed by many as if you are lacking as an author without a blockbusting novel under your belt. And look at the extremes some authors are willing to go through (i.e. Patterson) to stay on the top! Now, I wonder why the main place for it's survival seems to be our little niche in literature. Short Stories seem to be made for Crime writing and all it's sub-genre. Is it because the subject matter being portrayed needs a harder, less verbose edge and the basic design of a Short is perfect for those of us writing it? We have to cut to the chase, get rid of the frills, because our creations demand it? At any rate, Thank God it's still appreciated by Crime fans. I love the format with a passion and I would hate to see it lost for good.
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