The short story is considered by some to be the poor relation of the novel but this couldn't be further from the truth and this week is a good time for the myth to be dispelled. There are wonderful anthologies and collections of short stories around, written by known and lesser known authors, and what better time than National Short Story Week to read some of them or add them to your reading list.
So, what have I been doing for National Short Story week?
This month, I was very excited to publish my own collection Room in Your Heart (romantic short stories previously published in The People's Friend magazine).
First, I had my launch party which, if you couldn't attend, you can read about here
Then, I wrote an article in Writing Magazine about my experiences of putting together my collection for kindle.
Initially, I was only going to bring the story collection out as an e-book but was persuaded to publish it as a paperback as well. I am so glad I did as my collection can now be read by everyone - with or without an e-reader.
Having Room in Your Heart as a paperback has meant that I was able to show the collection to my lovely local bookstore: The Steyning Bookshop. It's a fabulous place to browse and buy books and I was thrilled when the owner asked if she might have a few for her display for short story week - as a self-published author, this is a great honour.
The fabulous Cobblestone Tea House in my village, (where I meet with my friend Tracy once a month for teacakes and writerly chat) and where the seed was sown for the collection, has been really supportive too. They were delighted to promote Room in Your Heart by having my book on show and bookmarks for visitors to take home. I can't thank these local businesses enough.
Having a paperback has also meant I could sell books to members of my local choir and dance groups (I felt very proud when I was asked to sign them). The support I have received from local people has been overwhelming and I am very grateful.
I don't want to finish this post without mentioning the short story magazines. Without them, I would not be doing what I love best - writing short stories! There are fewer now than there used to be but those that still print short stories are much loved by their readers.
Room in Your Heart is a collection of my People's Friend romances and one of my book reviewers said, '... after enjoying them all so much I think that this is one magazine that I really should start reading.' which says it all! You can read her full 5* review here.
But enough about me. I want to share with you two wonderful anthologies which I am sure you'll love:
Fugue a collection of contemporary short stories which includes a story by my good friend Tracy Fells and
Winter Tales an anthology of uplifting stories, by the Write Romantics, with proceeds going to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
There are many more wonderful short story collections which have been written by my writing friends and I would love to name them all but won't as I would hate to leave someone out. What I will do though is leave you with this thought: whatever your reading tastes, find some time to read a short story this week - I'm sure you won't be disappointed!