More Short Stories Online

Short stories are the form in which many writers hone their craft. And while each year’s Best American Short Stories and Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy anthologies compile some of the best of that year, they don’t highlight all of what gets published and is worthy of note. So much depends on who edits an edition in any given year, and no group of editors can read everything. Here are some online journals offering short stories to read online; you can be your own judge of what the best stories are!

Agni cover imageAgni, co-edited by Sven Birkerts and William Pierce, publishes literary fiction, nonfiction, poetry, essays, interviews, and reviews, and has a reputation for publishing emerging as well as established writers. Check out this recent piece: “A Viral Exchange, Under Lockdown” by Charles Bardes and Tom Sleigh. Continue reading “More Short Stories Online”

Short and Sweet: Stories to Savor while Social Distancing

As is the case for most folks these days, I am spending a lot of time alone. Under normal circumstances this would be the perfect time to tackle my to-be-read pile, but between phone and video catch-ups with friends and family and a seemingly endless amount of news to absorb, I’ve been finding it difficult to fully immerse myself in novels.

If like me you find yourself simultaneously sheltered in place but short on attention, it might be time to check out some short story collections. From standby classic authors to exciting contemporary voices, there’s enough here to give you a temporary break from current events, or at the very least, from social media.

Continue reading “Short and Sweet: Stories to Savor while Social Distancing”

Speculative Short Stories to Read or Listen to Online

Friday the 13th of March was a dynamic scene at the Central Library, with patrons queuing for help to find good books to read during the library’s closure, and the DVD aisles packed with browsers. I miss assisting patrons in person in finding a great story to read or watch – though do visit my colleagues at I at Your Next Five Books where we continue to advise readers and listeners online. Fortunately, there are many other ways to enjoy stories right now.

If you have internet access, here are some places to find speculative stories – e.g. science fiction, fantasy, horror, magical realism, slipstream, and anything in the realms of the imagination. Because it times like these, we need stories that take us away from our current realities, don’t you agree?

Tor.com is a publisher of books, yes, but they also post full-text short stories, as well as blog posts about books and popular culture weekly. Stories are updated in the carousel at the top of the site. Recent stories stories have been written by the likes of Maria Dahvana Headley, Charlie Jane Anders, Harry Turtledove, Garth Nix, and Neil Gaiman. Continue reading “Speculative Short Stories to Read or Listen to Online”

Le Guin, Allende, Bradbury & More, This Spring at Thrilling Tales!

This Spring Thrilling Tales, the library’s popular story time for grown ups, is branching out with new monthly evening events in addition to our regular lunch hour gatherings. Now in its 15th year, the program celebrates the joy of story with live readings of compelling, intriguing, wondrous and suspenseful stories. Here’s what’s coming up in the months ahead.

Continue reading “Le Guin, Allende, Bradbury & More, This Spring at Thrilling Tales!”

Never mind Hallowe’en: Christmas is the Original Haunted Holiday.

It’s that time of year again – a time of ghosts and goblins, of sudden chills and flickering candle flames at the stroke of midnight, of frights and haunts and things that go bump in the night. No, this isn’t a leftover post from Hallowe’en. For the Victorians, the spookiest holiday of the year was Christmas. Here’s British writer Jerome K. Jerome in 1891:

“There must be something ghostly in the air of Christmas — something about the close, muggy atmosphere that draws up the ghosts, like the dampness of the summer rains brings out the frogs and snails… Nothing satisfies us on Christmas Eve but to hear each other tell authentic anecdotes about specters. For ghost stories to be told on any other evening than the evening of the twenty-fourth of December would be impossible in English society as at present regulated.”

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Continue reading “Never mind Hallowe’en: Christmas is the Original Haunted Holiday.”