Story v. Novel

Folks have been talking a lot lately about the decline of the short story. I think they mean the decline of the short story's readership because short stories seem to be alive and well - fat and happy even. Literary journals are still printing. Kenyon just started an online journal, didn't they? Oh, and Jumpa Lahiri, current mistress of the short story, recently published another short story collection.

Antonya Nelson wrote a nice, succinct, and highly likely explanation for the paradoxical situation of the short story in the market place. Paradoxical situation: the Average Reader wants everything fast - food, weight loss, money, happiness -but they want to read long, big books.

Riddle me that, eh? Nelson's explanation makes sense to me.


  1. I wish I could recall where I read it, but Stephen King wrote something very similar to these thoughts about short stories, the short story market, and readership. It had to have been in the last year or so since it was somehow connected to an anthology of American short stories that he edited for 2007.


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