Five Short Stories

So I went and posted all my short fiction over here for you to read. Going back and reading through it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, mostly because I seem to actually have a vision for the style I was trying to develop at the time, and I more or less still like that style. It’s definitely me writing, and some of the decisions I made are very clearly made from a place of total defiance to all of the external pressures and expectations of what short fiction should be like.

Is my short fiction that much different from other short fiction? I’m not really sure, but I know that I never knew where exactly it fit. I tried, at the outset at least, to fit in with all the literary journals and styles that a young writer is supposed to. In college I took a course from Ehud Havazelet and learned two things — I still had a lot of work to do before I had control of my writing (very true) and that the writing I enjoyed did not fit in with the writing all my other classmates seemed to enjoy writing (even more true).

At the same time, I would read short Cthulhu Mythos fiction and not really care about that either. Most of it seemed so derivative and poorly written that I just had no interest in trying to be a part of that movement either. I think my story Independent Coordination, as my one attempt to write in the horror genre, shows me wanting to do something drastically different.

And I think that’s really the crux. I’ve wanted to “be a writer” since I was ten, but that was ultimately because I my head is filled with all these goddamned stories that I really have no other option. I’ve tried to keep them at bay, or even just walk away from them, but my sanity won’t let me. There is just too much to write about, too much to get onto paper.

So looking back on stories I wrote 15 years ago isn’t so bad. Yes, they need editing and I made a specific choice not to touch them in any way before posting them here. But they also show me defiant and confused and just working really hard to figure out how to get the images in my head down on paper. And that’s a pretty good way for a writer to spend his 20s.

I hope you like them.

Do you have any art you created earlier in your life that you still like?

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