A blog by an independent author with a particular interest in short stories.
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Love, Murder, Etc. by Kathleen Valentine
About Kathleen Valentine and why she likes the short story genre:
To me a good short story is a microcosm of experiences both sensory and intellectually. As a writer of short stories I try to create a small world, much like one might find in a snow globe, that is precise, exquisite and satisfying. Whether it is a story about love or about a crime or just the story of one person's experience, I want to give my readers a rich experience, a glimpse into my character's world. Though I have published novels and non-fiction, I love the art of the short story for its ability to create a complete little world that can interest readers without a great investment of their time. People today lead busy lives and often do not have the time to commit to a novel. But a short story can be like a mini-vacation in which they can slip away and leave everything behind for just a little while.
Summary of this work:
My book love, murder, etc. contains 8 short stories, some about love, some about murder, some about both.
She's a banshee screaming, sugar-starved monster, and her zookeeper has left you all alone with her.
That's what's running through twenty-nine-year-old Henry Dalton's mind, when his five-year-old stepdaughter, Rebecca, enters the room and utters these fatal words. "Where's Mommy?" Review:
This is a touching story about two people in need of love and forming an unlikely family. Henry Dalton, the protagonist, is your very typical bachelor that has absolutely no interest in having a family. He's just "a guy" that wants to date Rebecca's mom.
The circumstances of Dalton taking on Rebecca as his charge border on unrealistic by how fast everything occurs. I felt like more time could have been spent exploring Rebecca's mother. It wouldn't necessarily change the result of the story but perhaps add more emotional depth to the events that follow.
Still, the story has a good pace to it. I enjoyed seeing Dalton's progressio…
How did you become interested in short stories? By reading great ones; the first book of short stories I remember really impressing me was 'Dark Feasts' by Ramsey Campbell. I got it from a second-hand bookshop in Cleathorpes (small town on the Lincolnshire coast) when I was about fifteen and think I read about half of them in the back-seat on the ride home with my parents. 'The Companion', what a story! So when I started writing, that's what I wrote. I kind of had this naive idea that that was what writersdid, even those who wrote roaringly successful novels. And in fact even now I struggle to think of any great author that didn't at least dabble in short stories.
As an author, do you think writing short stories is worthwhile? Why? Short stories are pretty much all I write (I wrote a novel when I left university; it was a wannabe Martin Amis piece of rubbish). If you're asking are they "worthwhile" from an artistic point of view, then yes absolutely.…
How did you become interested in short stories? As a reader, I fell in love with short stories as a kid. Especially Edgar Allen Poe. Then Lovecraft and anything bizarre and weird I could get my hands on. I plowed through magazines like Ripley's Believe It or Not, but really I became an indiscriminant reader, consuming anything and everything. Unlike most authors, I wasn't pounding away at a typewriter in the womb. I didn't start writing until my mid-30's. Wow, that's ten years ago now. After writing several deservedly unpublishable novels I started on short stories and began having lots of fun. My goal this year is to create 50 new short stories. I'm currently writing my seventh and having a blast doing it. As an author, do you think writing short stories is worthwhile? Why? Absolutely. The problem many authors I've talked to have is they have too many ideas. Writing short stories allows you to explore more ideas in a shorter amount of time. As far a…