The Rise of the Short Story: The New York Times on the New Era of Short Fiction
Interesting post on the success of short stories in the digital marketplace at today’s New York Times:
The Internet may be disrupting much of the book industry, but for short-story writers it has been a good thing. Story collections, an often underappreciated literary cousin of novels, are experiencing a resurgence, driven by a proliferation of digital options that offer not only new creative opportunities but exposure and revenue as well.
Already, 2013 has yielded an unusually rich crop of short-story collections, including George Saunders’s Tenth of December, which arrived in January with a media splash normally reserved for Hollywood movies and moved quickly onto the best-seller lists…
“It is the culmination of a trend we have seen building for five years,” said Cal Morgan, the editorial director of Harper Perennial Originals, who until last year ran a blog called Fifty-Two Stories, devoted to short fiction. “The Internet has made people a lot more open to reading story forms that are different from the novel, and you see a generation of writers very engaged in experimentation.”
The article was written by Leslie Kaufman; the complete text is here.
This hasn’t been my experience yet, unfortunately! Maybe my novelettes aren’t literary enough. >_>
Don’t despair yet! Success, as in most genres, starts at the top and trickles down.
It will fall to bestselling writers to really popularize digital short story collections and other venues.
But once we awaken an appetite for short fiction among the tens of millions of tablet owners out there, I do believe it will have a lot of great benefits for everyone who reads and writes it.