So, you're not really a short story reader. You've been reading your Summer novels for a while now, and you'd like to see why I'm so gung ho about short stories. That's cool. It's okay. I can help you with that.
Well, if you're a regular reader here on the blog, you'll know that I'm a huge fan of short stories and that they are, in fact, my favorite medium for writing and reading prose. I simply love the art required for short fiction.
How to read a short story collection
Step one -- open to the table of contents.
Step two -- read the list of titles.
Step three -- pick one that sounds interesting.
That's right. Totally ignore those 1s, 2s, and 3s in the "chapter" numbers. They don't matter anymore, not one bit.
That feeling you're getting giddy and euphoric on... that's called freedom. You're no longer bound to follow the order the sections appear between the covers. Read the end first. Read the beginning last. Read from the middle out. Jump around from story to story. Pop around like popcorn (the old Jiffy Pop stuff, not microwave). Read all the short ones first. Read all the long ones first. You do you. There are no rules.
Step four -- if you're not enjoying the stories you've read, close the book and pick up a different collection.
Whoa, now... Don't get crazy. Once you start reading you have to finish all the pages, right? Nope. That's the beauty of short stories.
Also, if you don't have time to read a novel per week or month or whatever timeframe you assign yourself, then just jump around with several collections of stories. You feel like you're cheating on your "main read" because there is no main read. Not this time.
See? That's true freedom, baby. Drink it deep. Breathe in it. Roll around and get it all over your jeans. It's okay.
Okay, so where do you start?
Well, here's my list of single-author short story collections to get you started. I mean, if you want to read, then you want to read the best. Right?
That's it for me. What are your favorite short story collections?